GI Joe: Retaliation appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.35:1 on this 4K UHD Disc. Few problems cropped up in this satisfying Dolby Vision presentation.
Overall definition worked well. A few shots – mainly those with heavy use of visual effects – could seem a bit soft, but those didn’t dominate.
Instead, the majority of the flick appeared accurate and well-defined. I saw no shimmering or jagged edges, and the image lacked edge haloes or print flaws.
What would a modern action flick be without teal and orange? A refreshing surprise, but not a refreshing surprise I found here, as Retaliation opted for the usual palette.
As tedious as this can be, at least the disc reproduced the hues well. HDR gave the tones extra emphasis and punch.
Blacks were deep and dark, while shadows showed nice clarity and smoothness. HDR brought added range and impact to whites and contrast. The light softness made this a “B+”, but I still felt pleased.
No equivocation greeted the terrific Dolby TrueHD 7.1 soundtrack of Retaliation, as it excelled. With nearly-constant action, the movie offered nearly-constant auditory material that filled all tbe channels… well, nearly constantly.
This led us to an exciting sonic experience from start to finish. The various speakers provided lots of information that filled out the movie and blended together in a seamless manner.
Bullets, explosions, vehicles – you name it and it blasted all around us. This formed a dynamic soundscape with a lot to offer.
In addition, audio quality seemed strong. Music was bold and full, and even with a lot of looped lines, dialogue remained crisp and natural.
Effects appeared lively and vivid, with clear highs and deep lows. I felt totally pleased with this excellent soundtrack.
How did the 4K UHD compare to the original Blu-ray? Both came with the same 7.1 audio.
Though taken from a 2K source, the 4K Dolby Vision disc worked better, mainly due to stronger colors and blacks. This never became a stellar release, but it surpassed the prior BD.
In terms of extras, we find an audio commentary from director Jon M. Chu and producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura. Both sit together for this running, screen-specific look at story/characters, cast and performances, stunts and action, various effects, sets and locations, cinematography and a few other areas.
Overall, we get a pretty good track here. At times, the participants deviate into too much praise and happy talk, but those elements don’t dominate. Instead, we find a reasonably enjoyable and informative look at the film.
The remaining extras appear on the included Blu-ray copy, and under GI Joe: Declassified, we find eight featurettes. These fill a total of one hour, 12 minutes, 56 seconds and encompass “Mission Briefing” (10:02), “Deployment” (6:07), “Two Ninjas” (7:34), “The Desert Attack” (8:26), “Cobra Strikes” (8:57), “The Lone Soldiers” (7:44), “The Monastery” (9:57) and “Fort Sumter” (12:09).
Across these, we hear from Chu, di Bonaventura, executive producers Herb Gains and Erik Howsam, producer/Hasbro president and CEO Brian Goldner, Hasbro VP Aaron Archer, screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick, Hasbro lead GI Joe brand designer John Warden, military advisor Harry Humphries, stunt coordinator Steve Ritzi, production designer Andrew Menzies, costume designer Louise Mingenbach, visual effects supervisor James Madigan, Hasbro VP Global Brand Mgmt. Derryl DePriest, and actors Channing Tatum, Dwayne Johnson, Joseph Mazzello, DJ Cotrona, Adrienne Palicki, Ray Park, The RZA, Elodie Yung, Byung-Hun Lee, Ray Stevenson, Bruce Willis and Jonathan Pryce.
We learn how Chu came onto the project and what he brought to it, goals for the sequel, story/character areas, sets, locations and production design, costume, vehicle and weapon design, stunts and action, military realism, cast and performances, various effects, and a few other subjects.
“Declassified” digs into a bunch of good topics and does so in an involving way. We get a nice mix of interviews and footage from the set in this useful program.
Three Deleted Scenes run a total of three minutes, 59 seconds. We find “Pakistani President Assassinated” (1:06), “Interns” (0:54) and “Arlington” (1:59). Given the length of these clips, you shouldn’t expect much from them.
“Pakistani” offers a little teaser, while “Interns” lets the fake president have a little fun. “Arlington” shows a promise made by the Joes to redeem their fallen colleagues. None are bad, but none add much.
After GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra launched the franchise in forgettable fashion, I hoped the sequel would give it some oomph. Unfortunately, GI Joe: Retaliation offers another dud, as it gives us bloated action with precious little excitement. The 4K UHD delivers fine picture and audio as well as a nice collection of supplements. While this stands as a solid 4K, the film itself disappoints.
To rate this film visit the prior review of GI JOE: RETALIATION