The Invisible Man appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.37:1 on this 4K UHD Disc. I felt quite pleased with this appealing presentation.
Overall sharpness seemed strong. A little softness occasionally affected some shots, but those were minor instances, as the majority of the flick looked pretty accurate and tight.
I witnessed no issues with jaggies or moiré effects, and edge haloes were absent. With a nice layer of grain, I didn’t suspect any heavy-handed digital noise reduction usage, and print flaws remained absent.
Blacks looked deep and taut, while shadows showed clear, smooth tones. The disc’s HDR added nice impact to whites and contrast. This was a splendid image.
Though not quite as good, the DTS-HD MA 2.0 monaural soundtrack of Invisible Man worked well for its age. Speech could be a bit brittle, but the lines seemed reasonably natural, and they lacked any substantial edginess or other concerns.
Effects came across as decent. Those elements could seem rough in louder sequences, and they never boasted great dimensionality, but they were more than acceptable for their age.
The occasional instances of music showed fair clarity, and the track lacked much source noise; some light popping and background interference occurred, but nothing substantial. This was a more than competent track for an 88-year-old flick.
How did the 4K UHD compare to the Blu-ray version? Both came with the same audio, but the visuals offered modest upgrades. The 4K eliminated the minor print flaws from the Blu-ray and looked a bit better defined.
Don’t expect a revelation, though, as the BD already offered age-defying picture quality. The 4K became a mild step up in quality.
When we go to extras, we get an audio commentary from film historian Rudy Behlmer. For this running, screen-specific piece, he details the genesis of the original HG Wells novel, aspects of story/characters, cast and performances, visual effects, related films, filmmaker biographies, and some additional production notes.
As a commentator, Behlmer is money in the bank, as he always provides thorough, engaging examinations of the films he discusses, and that remains true here. Behlmer seems informed but not stuffy, as he delivers a spirited examination of the movie. I love Behlmer’s work and he makes this another strong commentary.
Hosted by Behlmer, Now You See Him: The Invisible Man Revealed runs 35 minutes, 19 seconds. The program provides notes from actor Claude Rains' daughter Jessica, Gods and Monsters director Bill Condon and actor Ian McKellen, James Whale’s friend Curtis Harrington, and film historians David J. Skal and Paul M. Jensen.
“Revealed” covers the HG Wells novel and its adaptation for the screen, notes about Whale and his career, cast and performances, visual effects, the film’s reception and sequels. “Revealed” moves through its subjects quickly but well, so it delivers a good overview.
100 Years of Universal: Unforgettable Characters lasts eight minutes, 19 seconds. It features a slew of movie snippets as a narrator tells us about different roles. It’s mildly entertaining but it essentially exists as an advertisement.
We get Production Photographs presented as a running piece. We find a conglomeration of posters, lobby cards and shots from the set that fills a total of four minutes, 28 seconds. It gives us a good collection of elements.
Within the trailer gallery, we locate promos for Invisible Man Returns, Invisible Agent, and Abbott and Costello Meet the Invisible Man. Unfortunately, no ad for Invisible Man itself appears.
A second disc provides a Blu-ray copy of the film, It includes the same extras minus the trailer for Abbott.
Although The Invisible Man isn't a great horror film, it's a fun and clever one that works well eight decades after its original release. The 4K UHD offers excellent visuals, good audio and a small but nice set of bonus features. This becomes a terrific release for an entertaining flick.
Note that as of October 2021, the 4K UHD version of Invisible Man appears only as part of a four-movie “Universal Classic Monsters Icons of Horror Collection”. In addition to Invisible Man, it also includes Dracula, Frankenstein and The Wolfman.
To rate this film, visit the prior review of INVISIBLE MAN