Green Book – 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review

Green Book Poster

Whether or not you buy into the film’s controversy, it’s undeniable that Green Book is still a heartfelt, entertaining, and hilarious. Much of that has to do with Tony Lip and Dr. Don Shirley’s sweet friendship. They’re basically the Odd Couple with the way that their personalities are total opposites of each other. Sure, their character arcs are a bit predictable, but with Green Book, it’s not about the story; it’s about the journey.

In this case, the journey is a road trip—a subject matter that director Peter Farrelly just happens to be an expert of. The director of such road trip films as Dumb & Dumber and Kingpin takes the best parts about those films (chemistry and comedy) and is able to add heart and drama to the mix. But the film isn’t a hard drama that some people wanted this story to be. Yet that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Seeing the development of a warm friendship like this just uplifts spirits. It’s the type of feel-good film that you can watch as a pick me up.

The film wouldn’t be as successful as it is without the genuine chemistry between Mahershala Ali and Viggo Mortensen. Mortensen is sensational as Tony Lip. His crude behavior and Italian accent is something that we really haven’t seen from him before. It’s a bit refreshing to see him in such a different kind of role.

Yet the best thing about Green Book is Mahershala Ali. Much like Shirley, he gives such a virtuoso performance. He’s able to navigate through his character’s complicated personality while also being on-point with his deadpan comedic timing. Not to mention, he just has this natural warm personality that’ll make you connect with him and his character.

Overall, Green Book is a fantastic feel-good film about a friendship between two very different people. Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali both give masterful performances that elevate this film to a completely different level.

Movie Rating: 4.5/5 atoms

Green Book - Linda Cardellini and Viggo Mortensen

Green Book hits Ultra HD Blu-ray with an HDR transfer and a 2.00:1 aspect ratio. The picture contrast is great in this release as there’s good depth to the overall picture. Because of the contrast, the brightness pleasantly vibrant. Not to mention, the bright areas are devoid of any bloom as well. With the black levels, they’re a deep black. Unfortunately, there is a good amount of crush found during the nighttime scenes. However, that issue doesn’t seem to be apparent during the daytime scenes.

Because of the nature of the film, a lot of the film features an Earthy color palette. As a result, the color saturation doesn’t pop but it does look natural. When it comes to detail clarity, the details are crystal clear as you can see the tiniest of details. However, the edges are on the softer side instead of the crisp side. Film grain is there but not apparent. Overall, this is a superb release.

Video Rating: 4.5/5 atoms

Green Book - Mahershala Ali

Green Book hits Ultra HD Blu-ray with a Dolby Atmos and a core 7.1 Dolby TrueHD Master Audio track. This review will reflect Green Book‘s Dolby Atmos track. Because of the nature of the film, Dolby Atmos is completely wasted here. Since this is a drama, you won’t find a lot of dynamic panning, LFEs, or overhead effects in this audio mix. There are a few instances of atmospheric effects appearing in the soundstage but it doesn’t happen a lot. It basically happens when there’s a crowd of people onscreen to provide applause or chatter to a scene. Yet that’s basically it.

Even the music doesn’t quite envelop you and music plays a big part in the film. The music primarily comes from the front channels and not from the surround or overhead speakers. Nevertheless, at least the sound object placement is accurate and the dialogue is crystal clear.

Audio Rating: 4/5 atoms

Special Features
Green Book - Mahershala Ali and Viggo Mortensen

Green Book‘s Ultra HD Blu-ray has the following special features on it:

  • Virtuoso Performances
  • An Unforgettable Friendship
  • Going Beyond the Green Book

“Virtuoso Performances” is an EPK-style featurette that has very little in-depth information about Tony Lip and Don Shirley. It’s a featurette that provides basic information and gives a lot of love to Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali. “An Unforgettable Friendship” is another EPK-style featurette but “Friendship” goes more in-depth than “Virtuoso” does. Here you get more of an inside look at the origins of the story. “Going Beyond the Green Book” takes a look at the history of the Green Book during the Jim Crow era. It’s an intriguing look at a part of history that’s rarely known nowadays.

Special Features Rating: 3/5 atoms

Overall, Green Book definitely deserves to be in contention for this year’s Best Picture race. It’s a fantastic buddy film that paints both characters in a courageous and positive light. The picture quality is superb but the audio mix doesn’t take advantage of the benefits of the Dolby Atmos format. You can find good pieces of information in the featurettes but there’s just not enough quality to cancel out the lack of featurettes.

Overall Rating: 4/5 atoms

This Blu-ray was reviewed using a retail/advance copy/unit provided by Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.

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