4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review: 8 Mile (2002)
In suburban Detroit, 8 Mile Street separates the black neighborhood from the prosperous white suburbs. For Jimmy and his gang, hip-hop is the only way out. He has real talent as a rapper, but to realize his dreams, he must overcome his stage fright during “rap battles”, where rappers compete with rhyming shots in front of an overheated audience.
NB: Image comparisons (.jpg compression, 8-bit) are strictly for illustrative purposes and are not representative of what Ultra HD Blu-ray will display on your calibrated UHD HDR screen.
Eminem had received with You lose Oscar for Best Original Song. 8 miles (2002) celebrates in this year 2022 its 20th anniversary. On this occasion, Universal provided the 4K remastering of Curtis Hanson’s feature film. The shooting was supervised in 35mm. The film is presented on this Ultra HD Blu-ray edition in HDR10.
If Eminem bursts the screen in 8 miles (2002)this is all the more the case on this remastered version enjoying a sharper definition. Visually, this title perfectly illustrates what one is entitled to expect from an Ultra HD Blu-ray edition worthy of the name. It is a high quality remastering that Universal offers us. And also a genuine update in comparison to the previous Blu-ray (VC-1) which suffered from a still uncertain level of definition (including curiously very soft shots on the last section). The rough images of 8 miles always convey a visceral dimension. The temperature remains cold. It suits the various underprivileged neighborhoods of Michigan. The HDR calibration respects the main lines of the previous proposals, without radical changes but with a more than substantial improvement in contrasts (regular peaks over 1000 nits measured). Skin tones are more nuanced and warm, without over saturation. The steel blue hues of the urban environments crossed remain elegant. And highlight clipping is also more precise. (the flames of the house fire in chapter 9).
The full definition potential of the original 35mm negatives seems to have been recovered. And whether it’s Jimmy, his alcoholic mother Stephanie, or young Alex, faces appear firmer and deliciously defined. Just like the daytime outdoor shots in Detroit neighborhoods or at the press shop. Without forgetting the scenes inside the caravan which also benefit from this general refinement. The film grain, dense and tight, displays a much more beautiful texture than on the HD counterpart of 2009. This structure – strongly silver – is one of the other highlights of this superb transfer. You should not be disappointed with the result obtained.
In HDR10, the brightness level of the brightest pixel in the entire stream (MaxCLL) stands at 1254 nits. An average value of brightness peaks was measured at a respectable 532 nits. Similarly, on the entire feature film, 85.72% of the shots are composed of highlights (with a median measured at 165 nits). Regarding HEVC video compression, the average bitrate was measured at 72487 kbps.
Universal did not just reproduce the audio section identically. The original version of the film benefits from a remix in DTS:X format. We find it with a core DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 (24 bit, 5650 kbps). The low register remains musically balanced, without excess. It’s still a solid mix that mainly draws its game from its excellent musical battles. The hip-hop score that weaves the musical backdrop also opens up the soundstage with robust surround channels. While other sequences, more imbued with realism, are illustrated with efficiency: the nightclub scenes, the sequence of the fire and the few visits to the factory (forged from more vehement bass). The rest of the film is calmer, with priority dialogues and a less extravagant spatialization.
The French version remains unchanged. It is found in DTS 5.1 (half-rate, 768 kbps).
– The realization of the 8 Mile
– Exclusive and uncensored rap battles
– Superman music video
With the exception of the bonus section which remains unchanged, it is a very elegant upgrade and on all registers (audio/video). The gain in definition is tangible, and the HDR calibration is modern and very harmonious. Eminem fans will be delighted. Highly recommended!