When the world is tearing itself apart, don't bother turning to world leaders - King Arthur's descendant will save us! The Kid Who Would Be King is a nice throwback adventure film to a distant time when kid's movies were a little dark and scary. Some clunky exposition keeps this from being a truly great movie, but the movie has plenty of heart and is a lot of fun. 20th Century Fox delivers a strong Blu-ray release with a decent enough video presentation a solid audio mix as well as an okay assortment of bonus features. If you need something for the middle-aged kids in your home, this Kid is an easy one to call Recommended.
Who doesn't love a little sword and sorcery magic? The Kid Who Would Be King aims squarely at the depressing overload of dire news media and hopes to give you a little light with some kid-friendly family adventure fun. It works as a solid throwback to 80s era movie making where kids could get into all sorts of danger and still somehow save the world. The cast of child actors is great. I could have done with some more Patrick Stewart but even a little P.S. goes a long way. The film may be clunky on the front end but it's worth the time you give it to see to the finish. CLICK HERE to read my full review of the movie.
Vital Disc Stats: The Blu-Ray
20th Century Fox delivers The Kid Who Would Be King to Blu-ray in a two-disc Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Package. The discs are housed in a 2-disc eco-friendly case with identical slipcover artwork. The disc loads to trailers for other upcoming 20th Century Fox releases before arriving at an animated main menu with traditional navigation options.
If I didn't watch the 4K UHD HDR10 presentation first, I would probably say that The Kid Who Would Be King features a pretty solid 2.39:1 1080p Blu-ray presentation. But in all honesty, I have a hard time saying that here. While this Blu-ray is certainly solid material, it's hard writing about it in a positive light when I know there is a version out there that offers pretty damn significant improvements. On the plus side of things, the detail levels are solid. While not as sharp or clearly rendered as the 4K, facial features, set design work, and some of the film's effects work shine through nicely. Where I have a have to kick this transfer a bit is in the colors department. While this disc doesn't enjoy the obvious benefits of HDR, it doesn't exactly sparkle and shine on its own strengths either. Flesh tones just looked pale and a bit lifeless to me and primaries more or less only covered the basics. They're the right shades but none of the life. It was also odd to see that some of the CGI effects stood out here more than they did on the 4K disc. Morgana's underworld layer, in particular, was an odd hodgepodge of practical and digital effects that never blended well. Usually, I'm not so overly critical of the differences between a 4K disc and a standard Blu-ray, but it's difficult not to in this case.
If there's one this thing Blu-ray release gets right is the impressive DTS-HD MA 7.1 audio mix. While it may not quite enjoy all of the overhead and atmospheric touches of the 4K disc's Dolby Atmos track, it stands tall and proud on its own. Dialogue is clean and clear throughout even during the heaviest of action sequences where you have clashing swords and the slick Electric Wave Bureau score. I was really impressed with sequences in downtown London and then the cuts away to pastoral northern England. In the city you get this terrific claustrophobic effect and then when the kids move north we everything feels more open with object placement in the far off distance. Levels are spot on without any need for monitoring once you get it at a comfortable level.
See our 4K UHD Review for our thoughts on the bonus features, but here's the full list of what's included:
Origins of a King
The Two Merlins
Hair, Makeup, and Costume Tests
The Kid Who Would Be King gallops onto Blu-ray a solid piece of 80s-era kid-friendly adventure filmmaking where there's plenty of action and comedy and the right amount of scares and peril. It may not be Attack the Block, but it's nice to see Joe Cornish behind the camera playing around with some great characters.
20th Century Fox's Blu-ray may not sparkle and shine as much as the 4K UHD disc, but it still holds its own with a killer audio mix. Bonus features are a bit thin for how much content there is but they're worth looking through. If you're looking for some family-friendly action/adventure entertainment, The Kid Who Would Be King should fit the bill - just give it a few minutes to get going. Recommended.