Potter and The Sorcerer's Stone
Potter and The Chamber of Secrets
Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban
Potter and The Goblet of Fire
(2005/Years 1 through 4/Warner 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray sets)
A/B+ Sound: A/B+ Extras: B Films: B+/B/B+/B
hear about franchises all the time, but most of them are tired
package deals. However, you have those that become huge hits and
Harry Potter is now up there with Star Wars (as of this posting, both
have eight main films and one hit spin-off, ironically) as one of the
most successful franchises ever. The James Bond films are far ahead
as the biggest ever and is still having huge blockbuster hits. Last
year, we had the pleasure of covering Potter universe prequel
Beasts and Where To Find Them
as well as Harry
films 5 through 8 on the new 4K Ultra HD format, which you can read
more about here....
eight films in the series are sold separately and now also are in a
single 4K box set as pictured in the upper right hand corner, BUT
NOTE: THE BOX SET DOES NOT INCLUDE EACH SET'S SECOND BLU-RAY OF
so you have to buy all eight films separately to get all the extras.
Warner is now releasing the first four films in J.K. Rowling's Potter
franchise in stunning new 4K transfers that easily best all previous
releases on Blu-ray in the new 4K format. The films have
surprisingly, hardly aged, with many of the digital effects still
realistically shining through even in 2160p and the new color
correction that Warner Brothers gave each entry for this new release
is a huge improvement.
years after his debut in bookstores all over the world, Harry Potter
still remains a pop culture phenomenon and one of the most beloved
young adult fantasies of all time easily. For those 'Potter-heads'
out there, you're probably thinking ''great, now I have to buy them
all again'' (a feeling that Star
fans have all but become numb to at this point with countless
re-releases on different formats, though visual effects are no
updated over and over here as they used to be for those films), but
for those who maybe haven't seen them yet this is definitely a good
time to check them out. Comparable to The
Wizard of Oz
(the MGM classic now owned by Warner, reviewed elsewhere on this
site) for its excellent fantasy narrative, there's a lot to like
about these films.
world of Harry Potter begins with the faithful screen adaptation of
directed by Chris Columbus (the Home
the film was a huge success in the box office and with audiences
alike, even those nit-picky skeptics. Filled with an enormous cast
of colorful characters and mind blowing production design, there's no
question that this is a strong way to start out an epic franchise of
this stature. In retrospect, especially seeing the cast grow over
the span of the film saga, makes these films rare and unique.
Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) is an orphan boy that is finally coming
into his teenage years. Stuck living with his dreadful Aunt and
Uncle, he is soon invited by Professor Dumbledore (the late Richard
Harris) to attend his first year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and
Wizardary. After meeting Hagrid (Robbie Coltrane), he soon is
introduced to a whole new world that he never knew about and soon
discovers that he is not only rich, but famous amongst the magical
community. He soon befriends Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint) and Hermione
Granger (Emma Watson) and together the trio end up solving their
first mystery together surrounding the mysterious Sorcerer's Stone.
Chamber of Secrets
not quite as impressive story-wise as the first film, there's still a
lot to like about The
Chamber of Secrets,
with Director Chris Columbus at the helm for the last time in the
franchise. Some stand out moments happen in the first act which
feature Ron's flying car and a bumpy re-entrance to Hogwarts thanks
to a nasty tree.
the Potter-verse has a Jar Jar Binks-like CGI character in the shape
of Dobby - a house elf. Realistic in one respect, the house elf is a
bumbling idiot like Jar Jar and is about the size of Gollum from Lord
of the Rings.
When Dobby visits Harry at in his real-world home, he warns Harry
not to return to Hogwarts. Haunted by weird noises, students at the
skull being attacked, and various other threats, Harry must enter The
Chamber of Secrets to solve the latest mystery plaguing him.
more thoughts on this film, try the link to our previous Blu-ray
Prisoner of Azkaban
Director Alfonso Cuaron's entry in the franchise is arguably the
strongest and my personal favorite for its spooky Halloween setting.
Introducing Gary Oldman in one of his most well known roles as the
deranged killer Sirus Black, this Potter film is darker than the
first two and shows a more mature young cast with several memorable
Potter ends up back at Hogwarts after an interesting bus ride on the
way there. On the bus, he hears about the murderer Sirius Black
(Oldman) who is hell bent on killing him. If this wasn't enough
stress, Harry and his friends are blossoming into teenagers and are
still a little rusty on their magic. But when a new teacher shows
up, Harry and his friends discover there's a bizarre connection to
Black that's a little closer to home than they expected.
Goblet of Fire
fourth year at Hogwarts focuses on a grand Triwizard Tournament
between three rival magic schools (Hogwarts, Beauxbatons and
Durmstrang) and the looming threat of his arch nemesis Lord Voldemort
(Ralph Fiennes) growing ever so near. Featuring (soon to be Twilight
superstar) Robert Pattinson and directed by Mike Newell (who made the
box office bomb Prince
in 2010, but has had his critical and commercial hits otherwise),
is a fun ride but not as strong as the previous film.
four feature films were shot on 35mm film and are presented on 2160p
HECV/H.265, HDR (10; Ultra HD Premium)-enhanced Ultra High Definition
disc that your home entertainment system can hopefully deliver. Each
film has a pristine 2.40:1 widescreen aspect ratio and stunning DTS-X
11.1 upgrades (Stone
was issued in 8-track SDDS/Sony Dynamic Digital Sound and Sorcerer
was in 6.1 mixes, so the previous Blu-rays were not delivering all
the tracks to begin with, plus the mixers have to consider sound for
IMAX blow-ups)/DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 7.1 lossless mixes, which
best previous versions. Also included in each set is the aged 1080p
transfer and DTS-HD MA 5.1 mixes only (save 6.1 on Sorcerer)
on the regular Blu-rays which, when put side to side in comparison
with the 4K, show significant difference in quality.
scores to the films really stand out, with John Williams' exceptional
music on the first three films and Patrick Doyle stepping in for The
Goblet of Fire.
Hardcore Potter fans will be sure to pick up the individual
soundtracks as well as they make for great companions to reading the
books. Also included are Digital HD copies of each film.
Features include (on 1080p Blu-ray discs which were released in a
massive Making of Harry Potter featurettes - ''Creating the World of
One - The Magic Begins
Two - Characters
Three - Creatures
Four - Sound and Music
set features the 4K UHD disc and two Blu-rays: one Blu-ray devoted to
extras and the other one just for the film itself.
in all, the Harry Potter films are solid proof that there is a
significant and noticeable improvement with the new 4K UHD format.
These films are all very well made with high production value and
great digital effects that stand the 2160p test. This is worth an
upgrade if you're a hardcore fan or if you're new to the franchise,
this is a good way to dive in and see them the way they were intended
to be seen.
films continuing over the next several years, which serve as prequels
to these films, the Potter Universe is showing no signs of slowing