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Category:    Home > Reviews > Science Fiction > Drama > Thriller > Aliens > Horror > Life (2017/Sony 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray)

Life (2017/Sony 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray)

4K Picture: A- 1080p Picture: B+ Sound: A Extras: B Film: B

It may be more than a coincidence that Ridley Scott's Alien: Covenant and Daniel Espinosa's Life (2017) were released only a few months apart, as there are many similarities between the two. That doesn't necessarily mean that Life is a bad film, even if it does borrow heavily from Scott's Alien franchise and many other 'space monster films' of the like, but it's no doubt elevated by its star power in great performances by Ryan Reynolds, Rebecca Ferguson, and Jake Gyllenhaal as the leads. The film also stars Hiroyuki Sanada and Ariyon Bakare.

When a group of Astronauts on a space mission discover a living being on Mars (a first for mankind) and bring it onboard their ship, they immediately try different tests to see if it can be reanimated and brought to life. When adjusting its atmosphere, they soon see that the being not only gains consciousness, but starts to grow as well. Quickly, it becomes apparent that its intentions are not friendly. Killed off one by one by the being, the desperate crew races to free themselves of this malicious creature before its too late, for it was this alien being that caused all life to be extinct on Mars and could do the same to Earth... the final destination for this space mission.

Slight spoilers below...

It's no doubt that the film plays on many screenwriting tropes and tries to work against what the audience is expecting, since it's initial storyline isn't all too original. One way it does this is by killing off one of its stars early on in the film, a technique that was first utilized by Hitchcock in his classic Psycho with the killing of Janet Leigh. The film stalls a bit in its second act with a great misdirection for the climax, one that I didn't quite see coming upon first viewing. It's not too often nowadays that you get a truly 'downer' ending and it, in some ways, even draws comparison to The Twilight Zone in its level of unsettlement for the audience.

Life is a great candidate for the new 4K UHD format and it really shines here in 2160p high definition with HDR (high dynamic range 10-bit color) and a widescreen aspect ratio of 2.39:1 and a fantastic sounding Dolby Atmos 11.1 lossless track (which plays as Dolby TrueHD 7.1 lossless on older home theater systems) that will immerse you into the film with its extensive sound design. If you don't have Dolby Atmos at home, don't fret as a DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 7.1 lossless track is on the disc as well though not as impressive on the regular Blu-ray. Similar to the recent 4K release of Sony's Passengers (reviewed elsewhere on this site), details in space are highly textured with HDR dynamic range bringing life-like details to life like never before and besting the also included Blu-ray transfer of the film in 1080p.

A digital UV copy of the film is also included.

Special Features include...

Deleted Scenes


''Claustrophobic Terror: Creating a Thriller in Space''

''Life: In Zero G''

''Creating Life: The Art and Reality of Calvin''

''Astronaut Diaries''

While not entirely original, Life is an interesting addition to the alien genre with a frightening Blob-like creature that is relentless and emotionless. A solid cast all around, hopefully this film will get a bit more respect now, as opposed to its initial lukewarm theatrical release.

- James Lockhart



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