Jam 4K (1996/Warner 4K
Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray)
Ultra HD Picture: A- Picture: B+ Sound: B+ Extras: C+
concept of Space Jam (1996) is a pretty ingenious one.
Combine (then) NBA star Michael Jordan (and other popular at the time
sports stars and comedians), combine them with classic Looney Tunes
characters, and craft an interesting narrative that crosses live
action with animation ala by Who Framed Roger Rabbit? (1988)
into a surefire blockbuster. This original Space Jam film was
a big success at the time, and I'm surprised that it has taken two
decades for there to be a sequel: Space Jam Legacy (2021).
Warner Bros. has reissued this first film here on the 4K format and
it looks and sounds fantastic. Be ready to have flashbacks of your
childhood if you grew up in the '90s as I did.
film also stars Wayne Knight, Theresa Randle, and the voice of Danny
DeVito. Bill Murray, Larry Bird, Charles Barkley, and Patrick Ewing
appear as themselves. Space Jam was produced by Ivan Reitman
and directed by Joe Pytka.
Jordan is kidnapped and sucked into the Looney Tunes universe in
order to help Bugs Bunny and his friends win a basketball tournament
to save them from nasty aliens.
Jam is presented in native 4K (2160p) with an HEVC / H.265 codec,
a widescreen aspect ratio of 1.85:1, and audio mixes in lossless
English Dolby Atmos 12-track and English Dolby TrueHD 7.1 (48kHz,
24-bit), and HDR (high dynamic range.) There is also a 1080p Blu-ray
version of the film with lesser quality and all of the bonus features
below. The soundtrack was a bit hit at the time, and certainly dates
the film a bit, but it's corny enough to work.
Commentary from director Joe Pytka, Bugs Bunny (voiced by Billy West)
and Daffy Duck (voiced by Dee Bradley Baker)
"Jammin" with Bugs Bunny and Michael Jordan
videos including Seal's "Fly Like an Eagle" and
Monstars' anthem "Hit 'Em High"
is a nice release in conjunction with the new Space Jam sequel, and
looks great on the 4K UHD format. This original film is a nice
little film for the time and remains a fun family film that kids and
adults can both enjoy. We certainly know that not every Looney Tunes
project has been a success over the years, but this one certainly is.