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4K Ultra HD Review: The Fabelmans

February 14, 2023

By John Corrado

Please note that this is a review of the 4K Ultra HD release of The Fabelmans. For my full thoughts on the film itself, you can read my original review from TIFF right here.

My favourite movie of 2022, Steven Spielberg’s Oscar-nominated The Fabelmans is now arriving on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray and DVD this week from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.

Spielberg’s film is a semi-autobiographical portrait of his childhood seen through the eyes of young Sammy Fabelman (Gabriel LaBelle), as he falls in love with making movies as a way to process his tumultuous family life.

It’s beautifully acted by the cast, including Michelle Williams and Paul Dano as Sammy’s parents, Seth Rogen as his uncle, and Judd Hirsch in a brief but memorable appearance that got him a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination. The film is up for a total of seven Oscars including Best Picture, with Spielberg in the running to win his third directing trophy as well (and I personally would have given it another three or four nominations at least for production design, editing, cinematography, and Dano).

This is Spielberg in introspective mode, offering a poignant reflection on his childhood and family, while also reminding us how much of a master craftsman he is behind the camera. It’s a wonderful film, that offers a complete package of entertainment and emotion, brought to the screen with some great writing, performances, and moments of movie magic. The 4K disc does a fine job of capturing the natural grain of the 35mm cinematography (with some 8mm and 16mm footage as well), and offers the best choice for at-home viewing, complimented quite nicely by the trio of bonus features.

Film Rating: ★★★★ (out of 4)

Bonus Features (4K Ultra HD):

The 4K disc includes three wonderful bonus featurettes on the production, and watching them reminded me why I love the movie so much. A regular Blu-ray is also included in the package, which ships with a slipcover.

The Fabelmans: A Personal Journey (11 minutes): Spielberg and co-writer Tony Kushner talk about drawing from his personal experiences in writing the script, where the name comes from, and the themes of family and ultimately forgiveness running through the story.

The Fabelmans: Family Dynamics (15 minutes, 28 seconds): Spielberg talks about casting actors to play the closest people in his life, as the cast members discuss bringing their roles to life with the help of old home movies, while all speaking highly of Spielberg’s process.

Crafting the World of The Fabelmans (22 minutes, 4 seconds): A deeper look at different technical aspects of the film including the production design and costumes as well as Janusz Kaminski’s cinematography and John Williams’s Oscar-nominated score, as Spielberg talks about the process of getting to meticulously recreate his childhood and teen years on film.

The Fabelmans is a Universal Pictures Home Entertainment release. It’s 151 minutes and rated PG.

Street Date: February 14th, 2023

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