Disney+ stands out among streaming services with many 4K viewing experiences.
Whether it be the vast majority of Marvel Cinematic Universe movies, the Star Wars saga or Pixar, there’s some mass entertainment for everyone. And you won’t find it anywhere in better resolution.
This is more or less going to be a list of favorites from the Disney+ catalog, as the 4K list is rather expansive (h/t Reviews.org).
The original Star Wars trilogy
With the most recent films having been in movie theaters worldwide, their arrival on Disney+ isn’t as exciting. The prequels were fine — some Star Wars fans like them more than the most recent trilogy — but…
Let’s be honest: everyone was waiting for this when it was revealed Disney+ would bring all Star Wars flicks to its catalog. And it doesn’t disappoint!
All the George Lucas-ordered Special Edition modifications notwithstanding, it’s amazing to see the O.G. Star Wars in Ultra HD.
While 1977’s A New Hope is the very first, many regard The Empire Strikes Back as the best film in the saga. Both of them look brilliant, and seeing the speeder chase from Return of the Jedi in 4K gives you a whole new appreciation for it.
Who Framed Roger Rabbit?
It’s so awesome to see this stunning blend of animation and live action in the highest-available definition. You’d think the conversion might be a bit rough. Not the case.
Who Framed Roger Rabbit? is a modern classic noir, loosely based in part on the plot of Chinatown. Roger Rabbit is one of many animated characters, who coexist with humans in this alternate reality.
Having a director like Robert Zemeckis steer the ship is part of what makes this movie work so well. Also, he calls on his Back to the Future actor Christopher Lloyd to deliver an against-type villainous performance.
Just seeing this 1988 movie stand the test of time in Ultra HD is stunning enough. But stay for the story, because it’s full of heart, wit and slapstick all in one.
Um, so, once upon a time, we made a list of best Netflix movies to watch stoned. I feel like this doesn’t really mesh with the Disney brand.
Having said that, I mean, if you’re still looking for a psychedelic 4K viewing experience, look no further than this film.
The fact that Dr. Stephen Strange guards Earth from the dark forces of the multiverse, by its nature, lends to trippy visuals. But oh man, you get the full effect of it in 4K, that’s for sure.
Beyond the purely special effects elements, there’s a ton of trademark quip Marvel humor. It’s also so interesting to hear it delivered by titular British star Benedict Cumberbatch in a neutral American accent.
Among Pixar’s films, this might be the most mature, heartbreaking, grounded and human. It feels like a pivotal moment in the studio’s catalog as the movie between WALL-E and Toy Story 3.
Both of those were so well-received and are gorgeous in their own right — no doubt among Disney+’s best in 4K. However, there’s something about Up that’s transcendent.
We’re not only talking about, you know, the house that floats away with a giant collection of balloons. Up can get viewers so down, yet leave such an inspiring, beautiful message of hope.
I realized I’ve left this off my “best Disney+ movies for adults” list. Perhaps I underestimated how animated movies could factor in. That’ll change in short order!
The highest-grossing movie of all-time. There’s a number of reasons people went to see this in theaters so much. Well, yes, darn near all the Marvel superheroes were together at once.
But it’s a great, three-hour epic that wraps up a 22-film arc and is a total game-changer for the comic book movie genre.
In 4K Ultra HD, Avengers: Endgame lives up to the experience of seeing it in a theater. The world-class special effects and CGI, not just in battle sequences, but in creating Hulk and Thanos, look great in 4K resolution.
It’s really worth checking out again — even if you’ve seen it a zillion times already.
CHECK OUT: New on Disney+ this month (March 2020)
Toy Story 4
The latest entry in the Toy Story franchise arrived on Disney+ on February 5. In case you missed it at the theater or didn’t think Woody, Buzz and the gang could pull it off again, it’s worth digging into now.
Toy Story 4 improbably follows up its predecessor with a poignant, moving story — especially in the final act of the movie. You’ll likely be moved to tears by what transpires, as it sets up another possible ending to the saga.
I’ll hear an argument for just about anything in the National Geographic category on Disney+ to be featured here, but Free Solo has to be seen to be believed.
Legendary rock climber Alex Honnold undergoes the most meticulous preparation to scale El Capitan in June 2017. The catch: he does so without any rope or harness to catch him.
A deserving Oscar winner for Best Documentary Feature, Free Solo is an exploration of human limits. Honnold obviously lived to tell the tale, so it’s not really a spoiler. But it’s a nail-biting thrill ride of drama.
CHECK OUT: The Mandalorian Season 1 Review
HA! With how much we love Star Wars, did you think a best 4K streaming list from Disney+ wasn’t going to feature Mando? And more importantly, Baby Yoda?
Season 1 of The Mandalorian was mostly brilliant. Any speed bumps could be forgiven thanks to the presence of the eponymous bounty hunter’s de facto son.
Creator Jon Favreau restored the Fandom Menace’s faith that Star Wars could still thrive under Disney. He’s already shooting Season 2, where we’ll no doubt get more answers about the little kid and Mando.
The Mandalorian was a big reason for Disney+’s original subscriber boom, but left fans hanging in suspense by releasing weekly episodes. Now, you can binge it in all its stunning, 4K glory.