Damien Chazelle’s superb triple Oscar-winning drama Whiplash receives a long-awaited Australian release on 4K Ultra HD. So, does it keep the beat, or is it all out of whack?
The story: In what is essentially the Full Metal Jacket of music films, ambitious jazz drumming student at an elite music conservatory Andrew Neiman (Miles Teller) is placed in the top jazz ensemble by an overbearing, perfectionist and rather terrifying teacher (J.K. Simmons), who pushes his perfectionist young charge to the limits of obsession about his craft.
“Either you’re deliberately out of tune and sabotaging my band, or you don’t know you’re out of tune, and that’s even worse.”
The 4K disc: Whiplash hits 4K Ultra HD bang on, with a detailed presentation that often belies its 2K roots. The application of HDR definitely aids in this achievement, with significantly improved black levels over the original Blu-ray release, and extra bursts to the reasonably muted colour palette that definitely look the part.
Somebody in the art department seemingly got sent the wrong memo, for while the packaging claims only DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 mixes in English, French and German (it also has a prominent “Full HD 1080” logo, 1080p description and standard Blu-ray region B indicator, none of which, of course, apply), great news is that a quite superb Dolby Atmos audio mix accompanies proceedings. Dialogue is tightly focussed at the front, with some impressive surround work bolstering the many outbreaks of music, while the overhead speakers add spaciousness to the ambience without going all Animal from The Muppets on proceedings.
This is a solo 4K Ultra HD disc release, with no extra features.
Release date: July 7, 2021
Format: 4K Ultra HD
Starring: J.K. Simmons, Miles Teller, Melissa Benoist
Want to know what to get next? Check out STACK‘s 4K Ultra HD specifications guide.