A Wrinkle in Time 4K Blu-ray Review
By Chris Heinonen on
Summary: More than 50 years after Madeleine L’Engle’s young adult novel “A Wrinkle in Time” was awarded the prestigious Newbery Medal, the big-screen retelling of this TIMELESS classic takes audiences on a transformative journey, exquisitely illustrated through jaw-dropping visual effects, a stirring musical score and diverse, star-studded cast. Three celestial guides, Mrs. Which (two-time Academy Award® nominee Oprah Winfrey), Mrs. Whatsit (Oscar®, Golden Globe® and Emmy® winner Reese Witherspoon) and Mrs. Who (Emmy nominee Mindy Kaling), come to Earth to share their wisdom and love with struggling eighth-grader Meg Murry (Storm Reid) as she journeys across dimensions with classmate Calvin (Levi Miller) and younger brother Charles Wallace (Deric McCabe) in search of her father (Chris Pine), a world-renowned physicist who mysteriously disappeared four years ago.
Movie Review: I read A Wrinkle in Time as a kid, but I have to attest I remember nothing about it anymore. So with no book experience to use to judge the film upon, it is a decent family film but also one that feels like it skips over things. The last 30-45 minutes I was confused about many things and had to ask my wife and 8-year-old son (who both read the book before watching the film) to explain what I had missed. They both enjoyed the film, perhaps more than I did because they were able to follow the last act better from having just read the book. Our 6-year-old also enjoyed the film and didn’t find it to be too scary, even though we thought the ending might have bothered him.
Technical Review: A Wrinkle in Time was shot on Arri Alexa cameras at 3.4K resolution, with an unknown digital intermediate resolution. It did have a Dolby Cinema release, but the home version is only HDR10. The overall image is quite good, but not as sharp as the absolute best films. Some of the VFX shots, the matching houses in particular when they visit Camazotz look fairly fake and flat against the background.
The scenes that stand out for HDR, in particular, are the beach scene, also on Camazotz. With bright, vivid colors on umbrellas, clothing, and towels, it offers a far better palette in HDR than you get on Blu-ray. It is also one scene where I feel the film only being mastered at 1000 nits instead of 4000 nits or with Dolby Vision might be a negative in the next few years. The scene looks good, but with more nits could pop off the screen even more. There is plenty of use of HDR highlights, including multiples scenes with the sun in the background that just lights up the room. I did notice a couple instances of slight banding, but it was gone in a second. Overall a good looking film.
The Atmos soundtrack is, in a nice change for Disney, quite good. The Atmos speakers are particularly well utilized, offering up lots of immersion during the film. The subwoofer channel could sometimes reach a bit lower, but it isn’t like the recent releases that seem to lack all sorts of dynamics.
- A Journey Through Time – Take an up-close look at the making of this magnificent movie with Director Ava DuVernay, Oprah Winfrey, and the cast and crew.
- Deleted Scenes (with optional director audio commentary)
- Ant on a String
- Aunt Beast
- Meg Learns About Calvin’s Dad
- Audio Commentary
- Director Ava DuVernay
- Producer Jim Whitaker
- Co-Screenwriter Jennifer Lee
- Production designer Naomi Shohan
- First assistant director Michael Moore
- Editor Spencer Averick
- VFX supervisor Rich McBride
- Original Songs/Music Videos
- “I Believe” performed by DJ Khaled featuring Demi Lovato
- “Warrior” performed by Chloe x Halle
Review System: Sony X900F LED LCD, Sony UBP-X800 UltraHD Blu-ray Player, Oppo UDP-203 UltraHD Blu-ray Player, KEF Ci5160RL-THX Fronts, Ci3160RL-THX Center, 2x Ci200RR-THX Surrounds, 4x CI200RR-THX Atmos Speakers, Anthem MRX 1120 Receiver, SVS SB-4000 Subwoofer.
Good image and audio, very good use of Atmos channels.
Film can be confusing at times, not as razor sharp as some recent transfers.
A Wrinkle in Time was an enjoyable viewing for my whole family, and the disc is good but wish it had either Dolby Vision or a higher peak nits level to be better prepared for the future.