The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift is often seen as the weakest link in the series but if I’m being honest, I think it gets way too much hate, and it’s one of my personal favorites in the franchise. Let’s not also forget the very catchy Tokyo Drift song as well! The film still holds its own with its cool racing action and a decent story that takes the franchise into an awesome film serial. Universal Studios Home Entertainment has released the film on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray in a two-disc physical media combo pack with a Digital Copy code. This new release features an excellent 4K HDR10 presentation and a highly satisfying DTS:X soundtrack, but it also includes the same set of supplements as the previous Blu-ray release.
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift transitions into Ultra HD with a mostly good-looking HEVC H.265 encoding. However, compared to its Blu-ray counterpart, the 4K release just barely ekes out a win. The 2160p transfer, upscaled from a 2K digital intermediate, is perhaps the weakest in the muscle-car lineup, looking a bit softer than the others with several poorly-resolved sequences sprinkled throughout, most notably during the panoramic aerial shots of the city. Nevertheless, the overall picture enjoys a welcomed uptick with slightly better definition in the clothes, buildings, and various vehicles, The intense drifting action maintains great clarity as well.
The black levels are appreciably richer, showering many scenes with excellent, silky shadows while bathed in a consistent thin layer of natural grain, providing the 2.35:1 image with a lovely film-like quality. However, delineation within the darkest corners could be stronger, and there seems to be a smidge of very mild, easy-to-miss posterization in the faces of some cast members during nighttime scenes with lots of heavy shadows. Moreover, contrast doesn’t show a major upgrade, but the 4K presentation is certainly brighter with slightly crisper whites in many spots, making city lights a bit more resplendent and brilliant. But it’s not by much when compared to the HD version or other UHD releases of similar quality, and specular highlights provide an attractive gloss and sparkle along the cars but significantly better detailing. The HDR10 presentation is nonetheless a win, boasting an improved and a bit more brilliant palette. The cars animate the movie and action with an eye-dazzling array of sumptuous candy reds, sleek chrome yellows, chartreuse greens, and a surprising variety of grays.
Visuals Review: 3.5/5
Drifting out of the audio garage, Tokyo Drift cruises into home theaters with a supercharged and ridiculously thrilling DTS:X soundtrack, sporting a fantastic upgrade over its DTS-HD counterpart. Admittedly, the first quarter of the movie taking place in Arizona doesn’t immediately jump out and impress, but once the film takes us to the fast-paced streets of Tokyo, viewers are thrust into the action, as random traffic noise travel throughout the surrounds. Other effects subtly and flawlessly pan from the fronts to the sides and rears to create an awesome sense of envelopment. While the music bleeds across the ceiling channels, atmospherics move through the overheads, enhancing the visuals into a subtle hemispheric sound field.
In addition to the awesome use of the surroundings, the design benefits from the extra-breathing room with a broader, more spacious soundstage. Background activity convincingly and fluidly moves between the three front channels and into the top heights, generating a highly-engaging half-dome wall of sound. The ear-piercing noise of the engine, the screeching of the tires, and the howl of the streets of Tokyo is enough to erupt throughout your living room.
Audio Review: 3.8/5
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift may not be the most popular entry in the franchise, but it has raced into the hearts of many fans and still offers plenty of high-octane action and a decent story that sets the stage for future films. The 4K Ultra HD physical media release boasts an excellent audio and visual upgrade, with some slight improvements over the previous Blu-ray release, making it a recommended purchase for fans and an excellent addition to any home theater collection and collectors of this physical media franchise.
|Disc Type||Two-Disc UHD Combo Pack|
|Disc Format||UHD-66 Dual-Layer Disc / BD-50 Dual-Layer Disc|
|Video Resolution/Codec||2160p HEVC/H.265, HDR10|
|Release Country||United States|
|Audio Formats||English DTS:X, English DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1, French DTS 5.1, Spanish DTS 5.1, Portuguese DTS 5.1|
|Subtitles/Captions||English SDH, French, Spanish|
|Special Features||Audio Commentary, Featurettes, Music Video, Deleted Scenes, Trailer, Blu-ray Copy, Digital Copy|
|Movie Studio||Universal Studios|