La La Land saw the “return” of the musical, and Hugh Jackman’s spectacular The Greatest Showman continues the lung-busting spectacular trend. But how does it perform on 4K Ultra HD? Is it “Whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh!”, or “No, no-no-no-no”?
The story: Melding biography with poetic – or lyrical – licence, The Greatest Showman tells the story of one Phineas Taylor – or P.T. – Barnum (Jackman), who through circumstance as much as brilliance invented the travelling circus. He also gave a home to many “misfits” of his era, one in which difference was even more rallied against by the small-minded than it still is today in oh too many circles. From his actual family to his newly-assembled extended one, the story is told with frequent outbreaks into song, delivering a refreshingly modern take on the classic musical format – and melded with some often stupendous action.
“No one ever made a difference by being like everyone else.”
The 4K disc: A colourful movie demands a colourful transfer, and the one here certainly fits the bill. Detail is superb in this 4K release, with HDR adding an extra layer of wonderful visual oomph – and colourfulness – to proceedings. It really looks majestic. Meanwhile, from the opening “WHOMP!” of the “Whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh”-infested The Greatest Show, it’s implied that listeners are in for an aural treat, and depending upon your tolerance for musicals – but if you don’t like them then you’re probably not watching this – that is what you get with this Dolby Atmos mix. The subwoofer aids the doof of Benj Pasek and Justin Paul’s songs perfectly, while the circus really goes to town in the surround and Atmos speakers. Three extras also appear on the 4K disc, being a commentary with director Michael Gracey, a menu whereby you can jump straight to any of the songs, plus subtitles so that you can sing along with Hugh and pals.
Release date: May 2, 2018
Format: 4K Ultra HD
Starring: Hugh Jackman, Michelle Williams, Zac Efron
Want to know what to get next? Check out STACK‘s 4K Ultra HD specifications guide.