G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra – 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra

Growing up in the late 80s and early 90s, Hasbro’s G.I. Joe action figures were my go-to choice for toys. Needless to say, when the G.I. Joe movie was announced, my hype for the film went through the roof. Unfortunately for Joe fans, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra is not what we wanted in a live-action flick. After all, when you add a mouth to Snake Eyes’ mask, then that’s when you know things are not going to end well. 

One of the huge problems with the film lies with its shlocky storyline. Blame it on the writer’s strike or its rushed production timeline, but the movie’s script features terrible dialogue and inane, nonsensical plotting. The forced connection between Duke, Baroness, and Cobra Commander isn’t believable by any stretch of the imagination. Not to mention, the addition of the sci-fi element is not a welcome change to the franchise. The success of 2007’s Transformers may have influenced the sci-fi tone of The Rise of Cobra. The exo-suits and the nanomachines sound like something that fits in the Transformers universe, but not in the G.I. Joe universe. 

Overall, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra is one of the worst live-action adaptations of all time. The movie is as bad as such hated classics as The Last Airbender and Dragonball Evolution. It’s as if the filmmakers ignored what made the G.I. Joe toy line so popular and decided to add their own spin on it. As you know, that usually never works out for the final film. Just ask casual moviegoers when it comes to Marvel and DC flicks. As you can imagine, The Rise of Cobra was such a disaster that it practically ruined the career of director Stephen Sommers. He hasn’t made a studio film since 2009 and hasn’t made a film since 2013. Thankfully, they learned their lesson with G.I. Joe: Retaliation.

Movie Rating: .5/5 atoms

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra - Channing Tatum


G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra hits Ultra HD Blu-ray with an HDR transfer and a 2.40:1 aspect ratio. The contrast for the picture is incredibly high, so the whites are brilliant, and the blacks are deep black. Bold colors showcase the wild color palette of the wildly absurd film. The green and red look good here and are a bit brighter than the rest of the palette. Details are crisp, but it does come with one big downside. The clarity of the picture also accentuates the dated and shoddy visual effects of the film. Overall, this is a decent video upgrade over the Blu-ray release from 2009.

Video Rating: 4/5 atoms

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra - Sienna Miller and Byung-Hun Lee


G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra hits Ultra HD Blu-ray with a 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track. When things get chaotic at the 8-minute mark of the movie, the soundstage comes alive. The accurate use of explosions and Cobra weaponry fills up the surround channels. The audio mix also features distinct atmospheric effects that add more immersion. The score is loud and sounds dynamic across all speakers. Even through all of the chaos, the dialogue can still be audibly heard. Overall, this is a good audio mix despite the lack of Atmos or DTS:X.

Audio Rating: 4.5/5 atoms

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra - Ray Park, Rachel Nichols, Saïd Taghmaoui, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, and Marlon Wayans

Special Features

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra‘s Ultra HD Blu-ray disc has the following special features:

  • Audio Commentary with Director Stephen Sommers and Producer Bob Ducsay

So yes, the DVD release of The Rise of Cobra had more bonus features on it, and none of it appears in the Ultra HD Blu-ray release. Director Stephen Sommers and producer Bob Ducsay talk quite a bit about the G.I. Joe’s rushed scripting and production schedule due to the impending writer’s strike. As you’ll learn from the commentary, the duo is in denial that the rushed schedule didn’t compromise the film at all. Multiple arguments were made by them over the quality of the picture, and it just simply shows you that they still don’t get it.

Special Features Rating: 1/5 atoms

Overall, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra is one godawful movie. It’s so bad that Channing Tatum has publicly said that he hates this movie. The picture is a slight upgrade over the previous Blu-ray release, and the audio mix is a simple port of the 1080p Blu-ray release. Also, the bonus features are still lacking from the earlier Blu-ray release.

Overall Rating: 2.5/5 atoms

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra is now available in stores on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray.

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

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