Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 4K Blu-ray Review
“Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the DVD I reviewed in this Blog Post. The opinions I share are my own.”
Studio: Warner Brothers
Release Date: March 28, 2017
Run time: 146 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2:40
Disc Spec: 2 BD / Digital HD
‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One’ is the beginning of the end of one of the most popular and beloved book/film franchises in history. In the seventh entry in the film series, Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) along with his two best friends Hermione (Emma Watson) and Rupert Grint have to fight time and evil as they discover that the three of them have to track down and destroy the missing Horcruxes. Along the way, the three friends learn about the dark secrets of Dumbledore as well as the three most powerful objects in the wizarding world known as the Deathly Hallows. Suspense ensues..
There is a tangle of different plots that keeps the narrative going forward, but they are of such simple design that the ideas never really bog you down. It’s more a case of “find the MacGuffin” which is actually a refreshing change from the complicated relationships of Harry, Ron and Hermione, who all hate each other now apparently. The story itself is relatively linear; Harry and the team must find and destroy some pieces of evil Lord Voldemort’s soul, which have been hidden away in keepsakes and scattered about (though usually found in locations that were important to the dark lord). There’s also the Deathly Hallows themselves, which are explained in a rather lovely animation sequence, as three magical devices that, when combined, can defeat death itself.
Voldemort obviously wants to get his mittens on these Deathly Hallows, while the heroic trio are more concerned with finding a means to destroy an unbreakable locket, which contains a piece of his aforementioned soul. It’s simple stuff, but allows for plenty of emoting on the kid’s side, as the burden of their quest becomes too much to bear. Cracks begin to appear in their relationship, especially between Harry and Ron, while Hermione actually holds the gang together- although, it’s fair to say, she is the source of most of the trouble. Indeed, this new instalment has a lot of sexual undertones- and at one point throws subtlety completely out of the window, when Hermione becomes a cold, hard dominatrix- possibly channelling Galadriel’s temptation of the one Ring. Speaking of which, the new Harry Potter, like the majority of the previous instalments, borrows heavily from Tolkien lore, most notably with the corrupting power of Voldemort’s locket, which the trio take turns in carrying round their necks. The locket is one of the primary contributing factors to the cracks in the trio’s friendship, ratcheting up the tension and the melancholy in equal measure. While the film is host to many a famous face, the young stars; Radcliffe, Grint and Watson do an admirable job, their acting lending the fantasy a healthy injection of realism.
Movie Quality: 9.5/10
The print is presented in 4K/2160p with a 2.40:1 aspect ratio. ‘The Deathly Hallows-Part 1 and Part 2’ are the best looking Harry Potter film in the franchise. My jaw dropped to the floor upon initial viewing of the original Blu-ray release but now I can say the same with the 4K Blu-ray release. Colors are absolutely eye popping and jump off the screen like you would not believe. I felt that the HDR here has more of a presence than it has in the previous 6 films, especially ‘The Half Blood Prince’. Gray’s, Brown’s and Green’s dominate the color palette throughout the entire film. Details are fantastic, especially with the setting looking so realistic that you really felt like you are in the middle of all the action. Black levels are deep in this film and stand out very nicely with the color palette used. While there is more grain that is apparent here in both Part 1 and Part 2, it never becomes a hindrance in anyway for the grain haters. The one plus to the grain is that we get even more detail in the image quality. The HDR is also more noticeable here in between the magic spells, the flames, and even looking at the basic scenes into the sky also shows off some really vibrant colors that carry a nice warmth to them.
Video Quality: 10/10
The audio is presented in DTS:X. Just like the previous releases here on 4K BD, the audio gets a nice bump over the previous Blu-ray releases. The rears get a ton of activity throughout the movie between dialogue, the score, and action sequences. I was quite impressed with hearing the various magical affects in the soundfield sound so life like. What is rather impressive is the use of the center channel where all the dialogue comes through. All of the dialogue and action pieces come through so clean that it is amazing with what can be done on the audio front. If you were looking to upgrade your Blu-ray release for the video and audio, you will not be disappointed at all.
Audio Quality: 10/10
- Maximum Movie Mode [HD]
- Focus Points [HD]
- The Seven Harry’s [HD]
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1: Behind the Soundtrack [HD]
- The Wizarding World of Harry Potter: Promotional Trailer [HD]
- On the Green with Rupert, Tom, Oliver and James [HD]
- Dan, Rupert and Emma’s Running Competition [HD]
- Godric’s Hollow/The Harry and Nagini Battle [HD]
- The Frozen Lake [HD]
- Additional Scenes [HD]
Special Features: 7/10
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is a good movie, there’s plenty of exciting set pieces, sharp wit throughout and lots of time to develop the characters in interesting ways. Just remember that it is actually darker than you’re expecting it.
Overall Rating: 9/10