Chimichangas. (I’m told that’s a thing.) Deadpool is one of the first 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray discs that you can buy, and it’s definitely the newest theatrical release that you can get hold of. As well as just being a good — if brutal — movie, it’s also one of the two 4K movies that you should go out and buy if you want to justify your big expensive 4K TV to your friends. Of course, if you already have one.
This movie is one of the best to test out your new 4K TV with. The Blu-ray version of Deadpool — 1080p at 24 frames per second — is impressive enough on a 4K Ultra HD TV, which points to the quality of the movie’s mastering itself. But load in the 4K Blu-ray, and on a new 4K TV I guarantee you will be impressed. If you’ve seen Netflix or YouTube streaming in the past, consider that you can comfortably stream that H.264 video stream at 25Mbps per second. New 4K Blu-rays are over 100Mbps, and that’s using the twice-as-efficient HEVC H.265 codec. That means (back of the envelope maths here) eight times the detail, and I’d absolutely believe that figure. There are some scenes — mostly slow pans over Mr. Pool’s suit — that are just about the most detailed thing that I’ve seen on a television screen.
Deadpool makes for great source material, with a mix of CGI and real action. If you’re trying to watch a TV critically, and give it a really good test of its capabilities, having a combination of smooth animation and cinematic real-world motion is the way to go. Deadpool’s mix of CGI is mostly limited to specific scenes — a lot of the action is real, which is useful — and it really does give a good demonstration of both how good CGI can look if done well, and how good proper real-life cinematography can be. There’s also plenty of detail in some especially dark scenes, which are always the best way to stress any TV to its fullest. Deadpool was filmed at 3.4K, and that’s a significant jump in native quality versus the 2K master files that some other early 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray discs are coming from. Bravo, 20th Century Fox.
It’s just a good — if obviously silly — movie too, which helps. Deadpool is one of Marvel’s most fun and most interesting characters, and despite that hard-MA rating that the movie has, Deadpool is fun without needing the excessive gore of its title sequence and opening few minutes. Ryan Reynolds is exceptionally good as the masked titular character, and the supporting team is equally well cast. You’d easily be forgiven for being more than a bit sick of superhero movies in the last couple of years, but I actually found Deadpool a breath of fresh air. I’m not a
comic book graphic novel aficionado, so my experience of the character is limited, but I certainly feel like the movie did its unkillable anti-hero justice. It has a fair amount of replayability value, which in my line of work is crucially important.
You’ll obviously need a 4K TV and 4K Blu-ray player to take advantage. We’ll be setting up a specific 4K movie-reviewing and 4K gaming setup in the near future at Gizmodo, but for the time being this review was done using a 65-inch Samsung Series 9 flat SUHD TV — the UA65KS9000, which is fully compliant with the recommended Ultra HD Premium specification, which includes HDR10 and Rec.2020 luminance, contrast and colour gamut support. To play the disc itself, we used a similarly compliant Samsung UBD-K8500 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray player. Your mileage may vary, but we found this a very effective combo for showing off Deadpool in its amazing image quality. But there’s that caveat again — to watch this movie, and any other 4K Blu-ray, you’ll need a HDR-compatible TV. But trust me, it’s worth it.
Deadpool is already out on 4K Blu-ray, and it’ll cost you about $45.