The pairing of Tim Burton and Batman worked a treat in 1989, so it was time for another go round in 1992. But here in 2019, how does Batman Returns fare on 4K Ultra HD? Is it purr-fect, or will it have you in a flap?
The story: It’s time for a new baddie to hit town – introducing The Penguin (Danny DeVito)! Fresh from the sewers, he’s after a little respect. Sure, he may have a tragic backstory, but he’s a jerk now, so it’s up to Batman (Michael Keaton) to do his sworn Gotham City protector thing and deal with the flappity-flippery menace – and his co-conspirator, supposedly respectable businessman Max Shreck (Christopher Walken). Then there’s the arrival of the slinky Catwoman (Michelle Pfeiffer), who catches Bruce Wayne’s eye. But is she a good kitty, or a b-a-a-a-d kitty?
“Just the pussy I’ve been lookin’ for!”
The 4K disc: Burton’s second Batman outing lands on 4K Ultra HD just how it should, with a native 4K transfer. Not only that, but it’s a truly stunning native 4K transfer. This most Burtonesque of the director’s two films featuring the DC hero looks magnificent on the format. Overall, Gotham City is a very dark, very bluish world, yet the detail afforded both by the crisp 4K transfer and the skilfully balanced HDR is a treat for the eyes. Darkness reveals detail usually lost on home video, while those brighter occurences – of special note are the Christmassy events near the beginning – pop pleasingly. While there is film grain, it’s so fine as to not even be noticeable, unless you jam your schnozz right up close in your screen’s face. This really is a divine presentation.
Audio certainly doesn’t let the side down, either. A new Dolby Atmos mix shines, bringing a spread of sound – from Danny Elfman’s inimitable score to the regular outbreaks of noise – to proceedings that belies its lesser-channeled roots. Everything coexists to deliver a perfect balance of quiet, loud, soundtrack and dialogue.
While an audio commentary from Tim Burton is the only extra feature on the 4K disc, an included Blu-ray delivers a bevy of bonuses. These include a making-of, galleries featurettes and a video of Face to Face by Siouxsie and the Banshees.
Release date: June 5, 2019
Format: 4K Ultra HD
Starring: Michael Keaton, Danny DeVito, Michelle Pfeiffer
Read our review of Tim Burton’s Batman on 4K Ultra HD here.
Read our review of Joel Schumacher’s Batman Forever on 4K Ultra HD here.
Read our review of Joel Schumacher’s Batman & Robin on 4K Ultra HD here.
Want to know what to get next? Check out STACK‘s 4K Ultra HD specifications guide.