Categories: Movie Reviews

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets – 4K UHD Blu-Ray Movie Review


In the 28th century, Valerian and Laureline are a special ops team charged with maintaining order throughout the human territories. They are sent to the ever expanding city of Alpha, where species from all across the universe share technology and culture, to track down a dark force that threatens the peaceful existence of the City of a Thousand Planets. This marauding menace threatens not only the city, but the entire known universe as well. Filled with action and stunning special effects, this film is brought to you by the director and creative mind behind The Fifth Element.

Lionsgate Studios
2017, 2160p UHD, Dolby Vision, Dolby Atmos, Rated PG-13
2.40:1 Aspect Ratio, 2 hours and 17 minutes
Starring: Dane DeHaan, Cara Delevigne, Clive Owen, Ethan Hawke and Rutger Hauer
Directed by: Luc Besson



Violence: Yes (nothing graphic)
Sex: Sensuality
Language: No


In general, I have always liked Besson films. They are both imaginative and usually action packed. This story has both of those elements in spades, but the story (based on a comic book) overly drawn out on what was really a simple plotline. Just cramming a film with visual effects and action doesn’t make up for the fact that the story was overly padded and could have taken half the run time to tell.

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The story also rises and falls on the protagonists. Besides looking bored most of the time, I never felt the chemistry between Valerian and Laureline. This lack of chemistry takes away the emotional involvement of the audience. Also, because the plot is derived from a comic book, the movie felt like it was geared to a teen audience. I realize that Besson was having fun, but was it necessary to have this go on for nearly two and a half hours?


Though a 2K DI was used, the film looks visually stunning with wild splashes of neon colors and jet-black backgrounds. Though your brain may be unengaged, your eyes will never tire from watching the screen.  With the addition of Dolby Vision, the contrast is jacked up and the specular highlights are quite intense.

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Details are razor sharp without any aliasing or artifacts. Skins tones are quite natural and the CGI effects are wonderful to behold. The soundtrack is suitably dynamic and rich with surround sounds. There are plenty of opportunities for your sub to sit up and speak out. This is demo quality stuff. Too bad the movie itself is a bit of a mess.


Besides a BD and digital copy, you get: Citizens of Imagination, Enhancement Pods, Art of Valerian Photo Gallery, A Teaser Trailer and Final Trailer.

Jim Milton

Jim Milton has been interested in high fidelity since his college years in the late 70's. It was there that he first became interested in classical music. He has been part of choral music, both in opera and oratorio and is an avid collector of classical music from the Baroque through the Romantic periods. He enjoys an occasional night at Boston Symphony Hall or attending an organ concert at Merrill Auditorium in Portland, ME. Currently he is the director of Nuclear Medicine at the North Shore Medical Center, located just outside of Boston. He also serves as an adjunct professor for Salem State University where he teaches a course in nuclear instrumentation. During his leisure time, he enjoys listening to his music collection and an occasional movie with his wife of 30+ years. Living on the longest stretch of sandy beach north of Boston offers him plenty of opportunities to take a relaxing stroll or soak up some sun. "Remember, acquiring good A/V gear takes lots of time...but doesn't necessarily take lots of money."

View Comments

  • It was a visual feast in 3D at the cinema. It was a natural choice for that format. Too long as most films are these days

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Jim Milton
Tags: 4K Movie ReviewBlu-ray MovieValerian and the City of a Thousand Planets

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