The Boss Baby 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review
It’s been a rough go for non-Pixar animated movies and the latest film to disappoint young audiences is THE BOSS BABY. The film is sort of a mash-up of STORKS and CATS AND DOGS, where babies are somehow “made” (which gets confusing since the mom was pregnant) and the baby delivered to the family we’re following is actually a secret agent of sorts. It’s a halfway decent idea for a kids movie, but it’s executed poorly and takes some weird turns, negating any positives it may have developed over the course of 90 minutes.
In this world, babies are made by a company called Babyco and are constantly in competition for cuteness with a company called Puppyco. It’s unclear if the world knows they’re competing with each other or how exactly babies and puppies are “made”, but let’s just roll with it. We’re following Tim and his family as they get ready to welcome a baby into their lives. Tim has the good life as an only child, but with the arrival of a new baby, his world gets turned upside down. Tim eventually learns the truth that the baby is actually Boss Baby, who was sent from Babyco to spy on Tim’s parents, who work for Puppyco to try and learn the company’s plans. In the beginning, Tim and Boss Baby dislike each other, but they learn to work together once Tim learns Boss Baby will go home once he fulfills his mission.
The parameters of the world should have been explained a little better. The 2001 film CATS AND DOGS explored a similar situation but with a secret war between cats and dogs. That film did a decent job of explaining what was going on while THE BOSS BABY made things a little confusing. Are all babies secret agents? Are all babies able to talk to each other? Things like that seem trivial, but as the questions piled up, it became harder to take the film seriously. I fully understand this is a kids movie (based on a kids book) and I’m not the target audience, but even kids movies have to respect their audience.
There were some redeeming qualities; there were a couple of laugh out loud moments and squeezed in between the weirdness was a good message of love between siblings. I also appreciated some animation decisions from director Tom McGrath, who incorporated some stylish animation as we looked through the eyes of an imaginative 7 year-old. And of course Alec Baldwin as The Boss Baby was a perfect choice and he was able to reprise his role from GLENGARRY GLENN ROSS, complete with the throwback line “cookies are for closers”.
If THE BOSS BABY felt a little awkward in the trailers, that awkwardness carried over into the final film. The idea was okay and we get a few funny moments from seeing a baby dressed in a suit, but the weirdness never rubbed off enough to fully enjoy the film. I also don’t think I’d let my young kids watch it, partly due to the aforementioned weirdness and partly due to the adult oriented jokes that don’t always work.
4K ULTRA HD BLU-RAY REVIEW
Video: I’m a broken record when it comes to 4K reviews of new animated films, but it holds true once again with THE BOSS BABY. The video presentation looks fantastic, but it also looks fantastic on Blu-ray, so the upgrade here is very minimal. You’re going to be hard pressed to notice any upticks in detail or color depth. Again, that’s not a knock on the 4K, it’s just the nature of modern day animated films; they look spectacular in almost any format.
Audio: The Dolby Atmos track, on the other hand, is a nice upgrade over the DTS track on the Blu-ray. Surround channels are used often and efficiently and overall the sound feels more full and immersive.
This title was reviewed using a Samsung UBD-K8500 with a Sony XBR75X850C TV.
The 4K UHD does not contain any new features, but it does include a Blu-ray of the film, which includes the following special features:
Featurettes/Clips (21:34): I’m lumping these 8 different featurettes/clips/add-ons together because alone, they’re not worth much. They’re kind of random add-ons to the movie, including some mock infomercials, a three minute short, an orientation video and some overviews of the story and cast.
Happy Accidents: Deleted Scenes (11:30): The director talks about a few scenes that didn’t make the cut. These aren’t finished scenes, but it’s fun to hear what almost made it in.
Gallery and Trailer