Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard: 4K Ultra HD
(Ryan Reynolds, Samuel L. Jackson, Salma Hayek, Antonio Banderas, Morgan Freeman, et al / 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray + Digital / R / 2021 / Lionsgate Home Entertainment)
Overview: In the Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard, bodyguard Michael Bryce (Ryan Reynolds), hitman Darius Kincaid (Samuel L. Jackson) and his wife Sonia (Salma Hayek) are back as the mismatched, high-octane trio, that are once again forced together into another life-threatening mission to save Europe from a vengeful and powerful zealot (Antonio Banderas).
4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Verdict: Lionsgate Films is expanding their 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray catalog offerings this month with the release of the euphorically mesmerizing, and gloriously colorful Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard in the expansive 4K Ultra HD video format this August 17th, 2021.
For my money, this Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard: 4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray + Digital combo packs sharpness takes a fairly large step forward from others in their 4K Ultra HD catalog and even comes with HDR (High Dynamic Range) for the complete 4K Ultra HD experience, of course.
So, what we have is Spiral presented to us as a two-disc combo pack with a sheet for a Digital HD Copy. Other stand out points you should know are: Codec: HEVC / H.265, Resolution: Native 4K (2160p), HDR: Dolby Vision, HDR10, Aspect ratio: 2.38:1 and Original aspect ratio: 2.39:1.
Featuring Dolby Vision and HDR10 for brighter, deeper, and way more lifelike colors, as with most all 4K UHDs, everything that we watch features these qualities - but somehow, this film gloriously shines within them all.
Noticeably crisper with the overall clarity receiving an obvious boost here on this release, what is more is that it is enjoyably noticeable.
For as well as some new nuances to the somewhat drab palette courtesy of Dolby Vision we also get to witness sudden bright pops of color; notably the detail levels are definitely improved throughout as what repeatedly caught my attention was the improvement in shadow definition in the many dark scenes (such as in the Where Is Your Shirt? scene, when Ryan and Salma are discussing how to get past some armed guards, but the lady manages to do it all - whilst losing her shirt!).
Indeed, the picture enjoys the fruits of the added resolution in terms of bringing out the aforementioned extremely fine facial and some of the yellow graded material - like the Who Were You Talking To? scene, where Ryan is on the phone - after a huge car chase escape - and Salma creeps up behind him, confronts him (whilst Samuel L. is laid back on the hood of the car), the outdoor, grassy countryside layout ending in a hail of fired tranquilizer darts!
As for the audio, well we have a veritable smorgasbord of choice here: English: Dolby Atmos, English: Dolby TrueHD 7.1 (48kHz, 24-bit), Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1 (640 kbps) and French: Dolby Digital 5.1 (640 kbps).
Overall, this is a very strong 4K HDR Blu-ray presentation, and, for the most part, the audio track remains fairly similar to its DTS-HD counterpart; with much of the action occupying the surrounds with outstanding directionality and placement where effects flawlessly pan between the sides and rears.
OK, well, as for the actual movie, well, in truth, the Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard is a rather good, fun action comedy film that may have less laughs than the first movie, but is still chock full of fun and so action packed that makes it an entertaining summer blockbuster film of the highest order!
What worked? The film is very fast moving. So fast moving that it skips out any story development like an introduction to Antonio Banderas villain character! And his agenda of causing destruction!
But then having Ryan Reynolds Michael Bryce character going on sabbatical to help face up to, and ultimately accept that he is close to losing his bodyguard license seems a little left of center.
And then we get Salma Hayek’s character showing up with bad guys in almost every scene! Chasing them and leading them into shoot outs all whilst she just wants to save her husband (Samuel L. Jackson). Next thing you know they are chasing a device that the bad guy wants and have to come together, peacefully, to help save the world!
So yeah, it is beyond action packed with lots of shoot outs, bike and car chases and oh-so many fight scenes that it is totally entertaining from start to finish.
Indeed, for my money the film tries to be bigger than the first with lots more going on with plot. It even has an Interpol agent played by Frank Grillo who was very much underused in the film, in my humble opinion.
It may not have many laughs or overall veins of humor than the first, but it still was a lot of fun on screen with the cast ensemble, that’s for sure.
I mean, come on now, seeing Ryan Reynolds, Samuel L. Jackson, and Selma Hayek nitpick at each other throughout, about family, relationships, past trauma and so much more (especially in the scene when she is driving the car!) is just to die for (if you will pardon the expression here!)
As for Antonio Banderas, well, sure, he does play a good villain, but he is also made up (appearance wise, especially the hair) a little cartoonish for my liking!
Anyway, so, overall, what worked best? The overall plot may be forgettable and doesn’t even need to be looked into too hard, but when you get heavily veiled support characters played by the likes of Morgan Freeman, well, you know your movie has some mighty fine gravitas!
Taking a peak at a couple of the Special Features and for me the stand outs are the Ryan, Sam, Salma: One F’d Up Family Featurette (where we get nothing but the f-bomb being dropped in every other sentence (if not them all!) and the oh-so funny Gag Reel; that sees Salma smacking Ryan’s glasses off each take so much so that he becomes terrified of her next rehearsed slap! This is a Widescreen Presentation (2.40:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:
• “Ryan, Sam, Salma: One F’d Up Family” Featurette
• “Gone Soft: The New Michael Bryce” Featurette
• “Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard: #stuntlife” Featurette
• “On the Set of Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard” Featurette
• Gag Reel
• Theatrical Trailers
Join the mayhem on Digital July 23rd, 2021 and on 4K Ultra HD™ Combo Pack, Blu-ray™ Combo Pack, DVD, & On Demand August 17th, 2021 from Lionsgate®.
The 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack, and DVD of The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard will be available for the suggested retail price of $42.99, $39.99, and $29.96, respectively.
Bloopers [Official Video]
The Stunts [Official Video]