The new 4K standard of viewing movies and television (and games) is now entering the mainstream, I don’t believe you can buy a new TV that isn’t 4K at this point. When a new format roles around people can be found guilty of buying up everything that’s available at first, since there is so little, to test their new equipment. I’m guilty of it too but sometimes it isn’t worth it with early ‘remasters’, despite temptation. And these reviews are to help recommend in one direction or the other. As far as the ‘Bourne’ movies go, this is the first in 4K that I would cautiously give the green light on.
Up until the recent movie came out, I thought that the Bourne series was remarkably consistent in quality. It’s not often you find a movie franchise where 4/5 releases are good. Maybe Mission: Impossible is one of the few others that can also say that. In Ultimatum the selling point is Bourne coming full circle, finding answers and finding his real name, this keeps it fresh but at the same time uses up all the stock in the Matt Damon story arc – didn’t the fifth movie just feel like a pointless re-hash in comparison?
It’s just more of the same really. More control rooms desperately trying to locate the ‘lethal weapon’, breakneck pacing, jarring camerawork and, to me, a genuinely good story that reflects a growing rot at the top of western governance. I think beyond this movie though, they really needed to ditch the whole ‘assassin dispatched to take out Bourne’ thing, this was the last time they should’ve gone to that well. It was fine in the first three, but predictable in the subsequent two movies.
My only complaint, again, is that the camerawork and editing can get ahead of the viewer. There are good action sequences but they don’t meet their full potential because of that. By the way, you can read our interview with Joey Ansah here, where he speaks in depth about his fight scene with Matt Damon in this movie.
If you read the first two reviews in this series that I posted, The Bourne Identity 4K UHD Blu-Ray Review and The Bourne Supremacy 4K UHD Blu-Ray Review, you’ll remember that I didn’t recommend purchasing either of these releases because the new 4K print was pretty sub par to what you’d expect as a compliment to your new television’s capabilities. Here, I’d cautiously recommend that Ultimatum should probably be considered.
The other two movies look somewhat flat, tired and lacking detail and perhaps the second is more guilty than the first. This movie appears somewhat more fresh, with a little more depth, strong contrast and more ‘urgent’ detail. Let’s say that if this was a standard 1080p Blu-Ray release, A/V aficionados would probably be raving about it. But as a ultra high definition release, I don’t know if they’d be so impressed. To me, this is at the bottom of what should be ‘acceptable’ as far as UHD/4K goes. I’m still kind of disappointed though.
I believe we’re looking at a movie that is capped at 2K digital here, unless I’m mistaken. Is that the problem? Is that acceptable?
For those on the fence, the movie also comes with the usual 1080p second disc and mobile download codes. So once again, if you’re don’t already own the movie and want it, this is the version you should buy. The usual deleted scenes and features are here on the old secondary disc, but less are available than the second movie.