Beetlejuice 4K Blu-ray review

Sep 11, 2020- Permalink

In 1998, if you said “Beetlejuice!” three times the crazy character played by Michael Keaton would show up. In 2020, the same incantation gets you a Beetlejuice 4K UltraHD combo pack with a Blu-ray copy and a digital code. Warner Brothers Home Entertainment provided me with a copy of the movie to review, however, the opinions below are my own.

The movie, directed by Tim Burton, centres around a recently deceased couple (Geena Davis and Alec Baldwin) who are trying to get the current living occupants out of their former home. When ghosts need the living to vamoose, they of course hire a bio-exorcist. In this case, that job is handled by Beetlejuice (Keaton), who uses his crazy energy to scare the Deetz family, portrayed perfectly by Jeffrey Jones, Catherine O’Hara, and Winona Ryder.

The 2160p HEVC / H.265-encoded transfer is presented in the original 1.85:1 aspect ratio. Beetlejuice’s imagery is mostly practical effects, using make-up, prosthetics, and models, and this new transfer captures them all with great detail and clarity. Skin textures, textiles, and the stunning sets all look great. The colour palette is well-served by the HDR10 colour enhancement which makes the vivid primary colours pop even more. The black levels are nice and deep and there’s no evidence of digital noise or compression artifacts that would effect the fine film grain visible in the transfer. Quite simply, Beetlejuice looks great.

Your ears are offered a veritable United Nations of sound track options. There are English Dolby Atmos and Dolby TrueHD 7.1 tracks, a Chinese Dolby Digital 5.1 track, and French, Canadian French, German, Italian, Latin Spanish, Castilian Spanish, and Czech Dolby Digital 2.0 tracks. The subtitles are equally diverse, with English SDH, French, German SDH, Italian SDH, Spanish, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Korean, Mandarin (Simplified), Mandarin (Traditional), Norwegian, Swedish, and Thai options. The main English track makes great use of its expanded soundscape, tossing you into the middle of the wacky escapades unfolding onscreen. Danny Elfman’s score sounds great with excellent dynamic range and clarity. Dialogue is centred and well-prioritized.

The extras are a little slim. Besides the digital code, there’s a copy of the film on Blu-ray, which is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio. This disc is the 2008 release and the special features are only on this disc. They include the theatrical trailer, an audio-only version of Elfman’s score, and three episodes of the Beetlejuice animated series.

An exceptional 4K video presentation and solid audio presentation make up for the deficit of extras. Beetlejuice in 4K is definitely worth adding to your home entertainment library.