The Bad Guys is a non-stop comedic thrill ride in an animated form that has a wonderful cast of characters both consisting of animals and humans that is set during a couple of big heists. Taking its cues from past crime movies and a certain Kubrick film, The Bad Guys is a blast for the whole family to enjoy with some exquisite animation. The 4K transfer with HDR looks incredible and the Dolby Atmos audio mix sounds wonderful. The bonus features are worth the watch as well. Highly Recommended!
Based on the best-selling children's books by Aaron Blabey, The Bad Guys has transitioned into the feature film realm with a hilarious and meaningful story that contains stellar voice casting and top-notch animation with a super-quick, cool pace. The criminal masterminded bad guys here are led by the suave pickpocket Mr. Wolf (Sam Rockwell) who leads his team of other animal friends, including Mr. Snake (Marc Maron), Mr. Shark (Craig Robinson), Ms. Tarantula (Awkwafina), and Mr. Piranha (Anthony Ramos) that pays tribute in the best ways to iconic heist films. All ages are welcome in this movie as The Bad Guys satisfies everyone's funny bone along with some great messages about friendship, loyalty, and of course, change.
Directed by the lead animator of all the Kung-Fu Panda movies (Pierre Perifel) and written for the screen by Etan Cohen (Tropic Thunder, Idiocracy), The Bad Guys takes its shape, which is molded by some fantastic movies that came before it. The film starts out with a wonderful and hilarious homage to Pulp Fiction that quickly turns into Ocean's 11 territories. Even the characters joke, "Never go full Clooney". It's easy to see elements of Edgar Wright at play here with some intense, fun editing magic along with some Fast and Furious type of absurd action and even a little bit of Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange in relation to a criminal changing to a good citizen. Of course, some of the references will go over the younger generation's head, but for those adults, these jokes will land perfectly.
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Vital Disc Stats: The Ultra HD Blu-ray
The Bad Guys con their way to 4K + Blu-ray + Digital Copy via Universal Studios. The discs are housed inside a hard, black plastic case with a cardboard sleeve. The artwork features the animated characters of the movie in their '70s wardrobe. There is an insert for a digital code.
The Bad Guys deliver a wonderful 2160p UHD 4K transfer with an HDR enhancement. Of the 1080p presentation and this particular one - the 4K is the clear winner.
The colors are more nuanced and well-balanced here, and with the HDR being used, the '70s style palette looks even richer and bolder. Feeling like a film that is set a few decades ago, the browns, beiges, yellows, and tan colors really accentuate that mid-century modern feel perfectly. The warm sunny glow of the exterior animation shots has a nice amber tint to them that never bleeds into the white suits or brown fur. Contrasting colors of blue uniforms, green emeralds, and colder colors are bold and fantastic. The reds, purples, pinks, and other primary colors shine brightly in all animated lighting conditions. Black levels are always inky and rich without any bleeding or murky shadows. White levels have the '70s glow to them as well.
The detail is a rather filmic appearance, which is a breath of fresh air from the usual digitized animated movies that release. Individual hairs on all the animals can be seen easily and other textures in the animated clothes and background objects look amazing. Set in that nostalgic '70s style, the detail has what appears to be a little grain on it, which gives the animation a ton of depth. This is an excellent-looking video presentation and is the best option to watch. There are no issues with banding, video noise, or aliasing.
This release comes with an amazing Dolby Atmos track that prioritizes balance and atmospherics rather than just loud noises. The sound effects are boisterous and dynamic with some nuanced sounds of technology sounding off, action sequences imploring explosions, vehicle chases, and debris falling down. Each of these sound elements comes with fantastic use of low-end bass that has a glorious rumble to it and never moves into an over-bearing, rocky territory. The score and needle drop always add to the film's fun and suspenseful comedy and utilize the full speaker systems.
Atmospheric sounds of animals running around, people talking or screaming, along with those cartoonish noises all sound wonderful. The height speakers give way to the bigger action sequences and animals running around on different height levels, along with some great reverb voices that are made to sound loud. This is a great-sounding Dolby Atmos track with a clear dialogue track that comes with zero issues.
There are about 58 minutes of bonus features included here with an additional audio commentary by some of the crew. There are some fun highlights of the cast in character and some info on how the film was made. These are worth a look.
The Bad Guys is a high-octane, super-fun, and highly entertaining animated film for the whole family that is modeled after some great heist movies and one certain Kubrick film. The voice-acting is superb and the animation is out of this world. This is a great, original animated movie that everyone will enjoy. The 4K image with HDR looks excellent and the Dolby Atmos track is a knock-out. The bonus features are worth the time as well. Highly Recommended!