Review: The Nun (4K)

When a young nun at a cloistered abbey in Romania takes her own life, a priest with a haunted past and a novitiate on the threshold of her final vows are sent by the Vatican to investigate. Together they uncover the order’s unholy secret. Risking not only their lives but their faith and their very souls, they confront a malevolent force in the form of the same demonic nun that first terrorized audiences in ‘The Conjuring 2,’ as the abbey becomes a horrific battleground between the living and the damned.

Plot: A priest with a haunted past and a novice on the threshold of her final vows are sent by the Vatican to investigate the death of a young nun in Romania and confront a malevolent force in the form of a demonic nun.

Director:  Corin Hardy

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1

Runtime: 96 min

Rating: Rotten Tomatoes 27% & IMDB 5.5/10

Unboxing (see below)

Bonus Features

  • A New Horror Icon
  • Gruesome Planet
  • The Conjuring Chronology
  • Over 10 minutes of deleted scenes

Review:

There is little to no grain seen in this release from Warner Brothers which has a great 4K video presentation and was given a HDR color grade in HDR10. The main story of The Nun place in Romania, so most scenes take place in the woods in and around a broken down Church, cemetery and various ‘rustic-like’ locations.

The Church they’re visiting is very old and there are aspects of the grounds that have fallen apart with many appearances of rubble — broken and destroyed. So much so, that the little bit of green grass and moss standout over the dull colors on the ground and around the Church. When it comes to the surrounding grounds and woods — the greens in these various scenes look as they are supposed to with added use of HDR. They POP! a little more because of the general lack of color.

This entire movie always an atmospheric vibe in the works. Dark corners and low-lit hallways in the Church and a “wet-dullness” everywhere outside. That means there isn’t much color on the screen and there’s always some use of low hanging (or on the ground) fog for effect.

As usual, the UHD brings out a lot of fine detail like sweat, pores and beard stubble on the characters faces — even down to the stitching of fabric on their clothing and blood. (Simple things like a dull blue or red shirt really stand out with the lack of color.) There was even a great amount of depth in a lot of the close-up conversations with smooth transitions and no distortion whatsoever.

Now on to what I was keeping a close eye on the most — the black levels. As you already know or expect, this movie has a lot of dark scenes, so I was really hoping that the blacks would be very deep and inky. Were they?

When it came to the UHD, there were some scenes where I felt like they should have crushed really hard, but they didn’t. BUT…. BUT…. After watching the UHD, I put in the Blu-Ray and went back to visit a few of the darkest scenes. One thing I can note is that the ‘black levels’ are way more problematic on that disc. The detail, quality and black levels are completely superior on the UHD.

A scene like the priest trapped in the coffin wasn’t what I imagined on the Blu-ray, it just wasn’t dark enough, but the lighting looks as it should on the UHD. That same thought came to mind every time a lantern was being held — the warmth and dimness of the light could be felt and the darkness was absorbed on the UHD.

Some scenes to point out on the UHD where blacks did crush hard was near the end with The Nun emerging in the water, or the creepy scene where Sister Irene is possessed and inside the worship circle. Nice!

Continuing with that one scene that really stood out to me: Chapter 10 where the demon itself is emerging from the water. You get some deep blacks and great lighting in this low-lit scene mixed with some green color variations coming from the water. Not only is it a pivotal scene, but an amazing shot.

Conclusion:

This movie is at the bottom when it comes to the The Conjuring series, but it still made a boat load of money at the box office. One thing’s for sure — this isn’t the last of the series and most likely, not the last of The Nun. Personally, I felt that this movie needed less jump scares and more “dragged out uneasiness…” if that makes any sense.

Rather than scare you ‘in the moment,’ I wish it haunted you and stuck with you long after the movie ended.

As I mentioned multiple times, this movie isn’t full of color, so the eye-popping scenes won’t be in abundance. If you’re looking for razor-sharpness, this won’t do the trick for you – but it does get the pass for a solid 4K UHD release.

As a horror fan, I love that the genre is doing great in the box office and getting the 4K treatment, so I could be bias on my level of excitement.  If you’re a fan of the series and looking to add this to your collection, I recommend the 4K edition as it boosts everything the format provides. (Definitely the best way to watch it.) If you’re in the middle, give it a rent or wait till the price fits your budget.

Otherwise, grab it when it releases tomorrow, December 4th!

Cheers,

Matt.