Transformers: The Last Knight 4K Blu-ray
By Chris Heinonen on
The Last Knight shatters the core myths of the Transformers franchise, and redefines what it means to be a hero. Humans and Transformers are at war; Optimus Prime is gone. The key to saving our future lies buried in the secrets of the past, in the hidden history of Transformers on Earth. Saving our world falls upon the shoulders of an unlikely alliance: Cade Yeager (Mark Wahlberg); Bumblebee; an English Lord (Sir Anthony Hopkins); and an Oxford Professor (Laura Haddock). There comes a moment in everyone’s life when we are called upon to make a difference. In Transformers: The Last Knight, the hunted will become heroes. Heroes will become villains. Only one world will survive: theirs, or ours.
No one has ever watched the Transformers movies for their stellar plots and acting, but The Last Knight falls short of even the previous films. Clocking in at almost 2:40, the movie manages to be incredibly long to pack in everything the producers could think of, but still managing to leave parts of the plot unexplained. I’m still not totally sure who every character in the film was at the end, which is never a good thing.
Since it is a Transformers film, and a Michael Bay film, everything blows up that can blow up. If a rock hits another rock, it causes a huge spray of sparks as if there was a secret fireworks store inside of them. The pinnacle of the effort paid to the acting is that often Mark Wahlberg, who is supposed to be from Texas in the film, falls back into his Boston accent but there isn’t any effort to reshoot or redub that audio.
As a film, Transformers: The Last Knight falls short of the prior films, which wasn’t a huge bar to clear. But if you like giant robots fighting and things exploding, The Last Knight has you covered.
The Last Knight was shot almost entirely on Arri Alexa 65 cameras, which offer 6.5K of resolution, for presentation in IMAX. The digital intermediate is only 2K, which isn’t surprising given the heavy VFX nature of the film, as a native 4K DI would take far, far longer to create by comparison. The disc also includes a Dolby Vision version of the film for compatible TVs (hurry up on the firmware Sony!) and players.
Despite being a 2K DI, the image here is basically perfect. I had to confirm multiple times that it is only 2K as the overall sharpness and clarity is outstanding. Using the Alexa 65 provides a clean image without the grain seen in other recent titles that is distracting. HDR is used extensively and looks fantastic. It has a 4000 nits mastering level, and in many explosions and images, you can see a lot of white clipping showing where it will likely benefit as TVs get better at displaying more nits. A large number of metallic objects in the film pop off the screen, and the huge number of pyrotechnics that Michael Bay likes to use look great in HDR.
Moving to the Dolby Vision version on a Vizio M55-E0, colors are very rich and lush and some of those explosions that I said were clipping on my A1E OLED have slightly more detail despite the lower nits count on the Vizio. I didn’t see any issues with letterbox bars being lighter as some people have seen on other Dolby Vision titles or displays, but most of my watching was on the Sony A1E and not the Vizio. Overall despite the lack of a 4K DI, this disc is reference quality and blows away other films using a 2K DI recently.
The soundtrack is nothing short of fantastic. From the opening medieval sequence that has arrows flying through the air around your head to the continual giant robot battles that make up a Transformers film, there is nothing to complain about. Bass is present and deep, voices are easy to understand, and I was put right into the action in my theater. All around Transformers: The Last Knight is a reference quality 4K Blu-ray disc to show off your home theater.
- Merging Mythologies
- Creating Destruction: Inside the Packard Plant
- Climbing the Ranks
- Uncovering the Junkyard
- The Royal Treatment: Transformers in the UK
- Motors and Magic
- Alien Landscape: Cybertron
- One More Giant Effin’ Movie
- Transformers: Combiner Wars
Sony A1E OLED, 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, Power Sound Audio XS30se Subwoofer.
Reference quality image and audio, superb HDR, Dolby Vision included.
The film itself is a letdown, a 4K DI would be nice but isn't missed that much.
Transformers: The Last Knight is a reference quality 4K disc that looks and sounds amazing. If you happen to have Dolby Vision or Atmos it takes advantage of those, and it will show what your home theater is capable of.
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