Movie Review: SAVING PRIVATE RYAN 20th Anniversary (4K Ultra HD Combo Pack)

SAVING PRIVATE RYAN was directed by Steven Spielberg from a screenplay by Robert Rodat and stars Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Edward Burns, Tom Sizemore, Adam Goldberg, Ted Danson, Giovanni Ribisi, Jeremy Davies and Barry Pepper. The movie also features appearances by Vin Diesel, Paul Giamatti, Nathan Fillion, Bryan Cranston and Dennis Farina.

Saving Private Ryan is filled with breathtaking imagery, including the astonishingly realistic recreation of the D-Day invasion. Captain John Miller (Tom Hanks) takes his men behind enemy lines to find Private James Ryan (Matt Damon), whose three brothers have been killed in combat. Surrounded by the brutal realties of war, while searching for Ryan, each man embarks upon a personal journey and discovers their own strength to triumph over an uncertain future with honor, decency and courage.

The first thirty minutes of this gritty action-packed WWII drama are as violent and deadly of an opening that a movie has ever had when U.S forces storm the Utah Beach on D-Day. After the Normandy Landings, the movie follows Captain John Miller and his small company of soldiers who set out on foot and go deep behind enemy lines to locate and retrieve Private James Ryan whose brothers have been killed in action.

Captain Miller’s goal is to get Private Ryan home alive but this dangerous mission proves to be a nearly impossible task because Captain Miller and his men are heavily outnumbered in their fight against enemy forces. They also learn a lot about each other during this intense tour de force. Most of the brave men lose their lives during this emotional journey, but in the end and with a little luck, Private Ryan does make it back home alive and the mission was ultimately accomplished but not without sacrifice.

The packaging comes with a slipcover/o-card. These Ultra HD movies all come in black keep cases which helps them easily standout from the popular blue cases that have been around since day one. The front features the artwork you see at the top of the page and the back includes movie details, some images and list of special features. The UHD disc features some matching artwork and the two Blu-ray discs have a blue finish and feature the movie logo. Inserting the disc, the menu screen was simple and easy to navigate. The picture and sound quality for this 4K upgrade were crisp and clear. I didn’t have any issues with the video and audio for this release. Fans will be able to experience this movie like never before with the 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack (plus Blu-ray and Digital HD) release. This features four times the resolution of Full HD and High Dynamic Range (HDR) that delivers the brightest, most vivid and realistic color and greatest contrast.

Bottom line is, I really enjoyed revisiting Saving Private Ryan and it’s a reminder that it’s definitely one of the greatest war movies ever made. This is another Spielberg classic that ranks way up there with some of my all-time personal favorites over the years and it seems like the legendary filmmaker has tackled every genre there is and shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon. The director captured the brutal violence and raw grittiness of the movie that gives it an edge above the rest and it’s complimented by some stunning cinematography and well executed action scenes. There’s also this incredible cast that delivers some outstanding and emotional performances here and they’re to be applauded for their work. The settings and locations were also spot on and really helped to bring this classic war story to life on screen. The authenticity and realism of it all is nothing short of impressive. All in all, I’d have to say Saving Private Ryan continues to be one of the best, if not the best, war movies ever made and it looks and sounds amazing in UHD so be sure you crank it up when you press play. Movie fanatics that have already upgraded their home entertainment centers (screens and players) to watch 4K movies are sure to enjoy the experience. Saving Private Ryan celebrates its 20th anniversary by making its debut on a 3-disc 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack (plus Blu-ray and Digital) on May 8th.

Distributor: Paramount Media Home Distribution

Run Time: 169 Minutes

Rated: R

4K Format: 2160P Ultra High-Definition 16×9 Widescreen (1.85:1)

4K Audio Status: English Dolby Atmos / French and Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1

Blu-ray Video: 1080p High-Definition 16×9 Widescreen (1.85:1)

Blu-ray Audio: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 / French and Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1

Subtitles: English SDH, French and Spanish

Special Features: Good Stuff! The impressive list of extras are all located on their own Blu-ray disc (no extras on the UHD disc) and include more than three hours of previously released bonus features that take viewers into the past for a look at the real-life events that inspired the film and behind-the-scenes to explore the challenges of bringing that past to life.

  • An Introduction (02:35)
  • Looking Into the Past (04:40)
  • Miller and His Platoon (08:23)
  • Boot Camp (07:37)
  • Making Saving Private Ryan (22:05)
  • Re-Creating Omaha Beach (17:58)
  • Music and Sound (15:59)
  • Parting Thoughts (03:43)
  • Into the Breach: Saving Private Ryan (25:01)
  • Theatrical Trailer (02:!6)
  • Re-Release Trailer (02:05)
  • Shooting War (1:28:05)
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