Shazam! 4K Blu-ray Review
|Pros||Fun, enjoyable story for the whole family, audio and video that are just top-notch.|
|Cons||It's too bad the digital intermediate looks to only be 2K given it has a 3.4K source.|
|Summary||Shazam is fun, lighthearted superhero entertainment that the whole family can watch. The audio and video are both first-rate and it'll be fantastic for showing off a home theater.|
|Negative Formats||ARRIRAW (3.4K)|
|Peak Brightness||Dolby Vision|
|Stars||Mark Strong, Zachary Levi, Asher Angel|
|Review Date||July 16, 2019|
We all have a superhero inside us, it just takes a bit of magic to bring it out. In Billy Batson’s (Asher Angel) case, by shouting out one word—SHAZAM!—this streetwise 14-year-old foster kid can turn into the adult superhero Shazam (Zachary Levi), courtesy of an ancient wizard. Still a kid at heart—inside a ripped, godlike body—Shazam revels in this adult version of himself by doing what any teen would do with superpowers: have fun with them! Can he fly? Does he have X-ray vision? Can he shoot lightning out of his hands? Can he skip his social studies test? Shazam sets out to test the limits of his abilities with the joyful recklessness of a child. But he’ll need to master these powers quickly in order to fight the deadly forces of evil controlled by Dr. Thaddeus Sivana (Mark Strong).
Shazam! Movie Review
Shazam! comes from DC and is almost nothing like their previous films. The closest would be Aquaman, as it is fairly lighthearted throughout. It was almost too laid back for my wife, who thought the first bit of the film might aim too much towards kids and not adults. While the film is overall fun and enjoyable it isn’t perfect. Dr. Sivana is a very black-and-white character that doesn’t show any evolution over the film. He’s just bad and that is it. A subplot revolving around Billy’s mom is resolved too cleanly and easily for my liking, but those are minor issues. Everyone in the family will enjoy Shazam and I don’t have any issues watching it with my younger kids.
Shazam! Technical Review
Shazam was shot on 3.4K Arri cameras and no mention is made anywhere about a digital intermediate format. I tracked down the projection notes for the digital cinema release, and it was only available in 2K formats for theaters, so I’m going to assume that the DI is only 2K as otherwise, a 4K version is typically available. The disc also features a Dolby Vision layer and overall it looks fantastic. There are plenty of highlights here in HDR, from Shazam’s costume to his ability to shoot lightning to the lights of a carnival at night. I found nothing at all to complain about with the transfer here, watching it both on an LG C9 OLED and a Vizio PQX.
The Dolby Atmos soundtrack is just fantastic, using every channel to the best of its ability. You get atmospheric effects when it calls for it, as a cavern has a feeling of spaciousness and a bit of an echo around you. Battle scenes have enemies moving all around your head, and there is plenty of low-end impacts when the subwoofer is called on. The soundtrack here is wonderful and on a technical level the only area the film falls short in is not having a 4K DI.
Shazam! Special Features
- Shazam Exclusive Motion Comic
- The Magical World of Shazam
- Super Fun Zac
- Carnival Scene Study, Shazamily Values
- Shazamily Values
- Who is Shazam?
- Deleted Scenes
- Gag Reel
Shazam! Review System
LG C9 OLED, Panasonic UB820 UltraHD Blu-ray Player, KEF Ci5160RL-THX Fronts, Ci3160RL-THX Center, 2x Ci200RR-THX Surrounds, 4x CI200RR-THX Atmos Speakers, Anthem MRX 1120 Receiver, Power Sound Audio Subwoofer.