Toy Story 4 – Ultra HD Blu-ray Review

Toy Story 4 Poster

When I originally reviewed the film, I said this was the best Toy Story of them all. Upon several viewings my thoughts on the film changed slightly. Not only is the film the best Toy Story of them all but it’s one of the best films of the year.

This is a vastly different Toy Story. Although Woody has been the main character in the first three films, this is the first time where the film primarily focuses on Woody. Besides Bo Peep, everyone else are supporting characters. This means that most of the original cast of characters are left on the wayside.

At the same time, this focus on Woody lets us see what makes Woody tick. Woody grows more as a character and you can see him change as a character. After three films, you would think that Woody is a fully fleshed out character already. Little did we know that there’s more to Woody’s story than we originally thought.

Like Captain America, Woody has a strong moral compass and is willing to make sacrifices for the greater good. But like Cap in Endgame, this is the first time we see him do something for himself rather than for the good of all. So you see him come full circle and complete his story.

At the same time, we get to know more about Bo Peep. The film fleshes out more of her character and makes her a main character instead of a supporting character. Although some films tend to shoehorn in the strong female protagonist character to “stay woke”, Bo Peep’s transformation came naturally. After all, if you had to survive on your own for several years then you’d be independent too.

The greatest thing the film has ever done is introducing new characters and making us forget about the old ones. The new characters are all memorable and the primary source of laughs and entertainment in the film.

Overall, Toy Story 4 is simply a perfect piece of cinema. Yes, the Toy Story franchise is perfect from the first film to this film. Yet Toy Story 4 improves on everything that came before. It’s near impossible to improve upon The equally perfect Toy Story 3. Somehow Pixar is still able to pull off the impossible and conclude a franchise that is all-in-all flawless.

Movie Rating: 5/5 atoms


Toy Story 4 - Tony Hale

Toy Story 4 hits Ultra HD Blu-ray (see it on Amazon) with an HDR transfer and a 2.40:1 aspect ratio. For an Ultra HD Pixar release, the picture looks a bit off compared to the others. First of all, the picture has reasonably high brightness and a slightly linear contrast. Things like the carnival lights jump off the screen but the picture looks a tiny bit flat. Thankfully, there isn’t any bloom in these bright areas. Due to this high brightness, the dark areas are a lighter shade of black compared to other Ultra HD releases.

The colors don’t necessarily pop off the screen but the natural realistic colors are rich and colorful. On the other hand, the details are so incredibly clear. All the tiny little textures on the toys are clean and crisp. You can see this on the bit of fur on top of Ducky’s head. Overall, the picture quality leaves much to be desired.

Video Rating: 4/5 atoms


Toy Story 4 - Tim Allen, Jordan Peele, Keegan-Michael Key, Tom Hanks, Ally Maki, and Annie Potts

Toy Story 4 hits Ultra HD Blu-ray with a Dolby Atmos and a core 7.1 Dolby TrueHD Master Audio track. This review will reflect Toy Story 4‘s Dolby Atmos track. The entire mix can be summarized in one word: Subtle. There are a few instances where the dynamic audio, LFE, and atmospherics come into play. The times that it shows up, it’s soft and subtle. The only time where the atmospherics are distinct is when the scene is at the carnival. At the same time, the subtle overhead effects cover the soundstage like a dome. There are a few times when it’s distinct like the opening scene in the rain.

The one distinct constant, though, comes from Randy Newman’s score. The score consistently fills up the soundstage and his crisp and warm score covers you like a blanket. Also, the dialogue is distinct and is mostly relegated to the front center speaker. Overall, the audio mix is subtle but clean sounding.

Audio Rating: 4/5 atoms

Special Features

Toy Story 4 - Keanu Reeves

Toy Story 4‘s Ultra HD Blu-ray disc doesn’t have any special features on it. However, you can find the following special features on the Bonus Features Blu-ray disc:

  • Bonus Features
    • Let’s Ride with Ally Maki
    • Woody & Buzz
    • Anatomy of a Scene: Playground
    • Toy Views
      • Carnival Run
      • View from the Roof
  • Toy Box
    • Gabby Gabby & Her Gang
    • Forky
    • Duke Caboom
    • Ducky & Bunny
    • Giggle McDimples
  • Deleted Scenes
    • Introduction
    • Scamming Playtime
    • Bo Knows Hippos
    • Desperate Toys
    • Knock-Offs
    • Recruit Duke
    • She’s the One

“Let’s Ride with Ally Maki” is a fun over-the-top featurette which takes a look at the voice recording process. You will learn a thing or two (or twenty) by watching this. “Woody and Buzz” takes a short but sweet look at the relationship between Woody and Buzz in Toy Story 4. The featurette gives an inside look at the character arcs of both characters.

“Anatomy of a Scene” is such a fantastic in-depth look at the work done to create a scene. From the fun minor details to early animation footage, you will learn A TON about the playground scene. If you’re a budding animator or a cinephile then this is an absolute must-watch for you. “Toy Views” is a fun little POV run through of two locations in the film: The carnival and the roof of the antique shop.

“Toy Box” provides an inside look at the brand new toys in the film. The voice actors, animators, and filmmakers divulge a ton of information about their respective characters. The deleted scenes are storyboard animations accompanied by an introduction by director Josh Cooley. With Toy Story 4 being a perfect film already, none of deleted scenes really added to the film. You do, however, hear about how the film evolves through the storyboard process.

Special Features Rating: 4/5 atoms

Overall, Toy Story 4 is a perfect film that has something for everyone. The video and audio are a bit lacking. However, the special features are a mini-lesson in the process of animated filmmaking. You’ll learn a lot by watching the features on this release.

Overall Rating: 4.5/5 atoms

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

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