So, again a caveat - I watched this last week on an aging (but still pretty darn decent) 1080p PJ, with no HDR and just over 1,500 hours on the bulb (damn, I'm tight.....). How does this stack up against the UK disc? Surprisingly well actually, even on a 1080p display. I didn't do a full A/B comparison but I watched the film first in its entirety on UHD and then went back and did a flick between the first 5 mins of the UHD and the UK BD playing in 2D.
Firstly, as expected, colours pack far more of a punch - the solid reds of the opening credits look far richer and vivid on the UHD than the BD (where they looked significantly paler in comparison). The initial slo-mo scene backs this up too, with the UHD colours looking brighter, richer and warmer without any sign of other picture issues that usually accompany such changes, such as colour bleed, etc. In terms of detail, there's not a huge amount of difference but it is there to see - on the initial hostage scene, where Dredd saves the pregnant hostage, the edge of his badge on the BD looked to have a touch of the jaggies about it: only a touch mind, but it also had a few minor artefacts around it as well. This had all but gone on the UHD version - the edge was significantly cleaner, with the artefacting gone completely and the jaggies now reduced to only being visible with me actually walking up to the screen.
Taking this sample as being representative of the whole film, I think we can say that the UHD definitely improves on the image of the UK BD significantly even on 1080p kit.......but it doesn't suddenly turn this image into a crystal clean, treat for the eyes. Its still a touch soft, with not massive amounts of fine detail on show even in extreme close ups. But, this is perfectly in keeping with the directors intent - its still got that gritty, grainy, textured feel to it which is exactly what it should have. For me this a definite improvement on what we had in this country and I can only image how much better this could look with HDR/WCG and a full on 4K TV.
Of course I got the disc for the Atmos track and as many have already said, its a corker. The opening DNA Films logo pans over you right at the start in a way the upmixed regular 7.1 track just doesn't (its like the difference between hearing an actual sound and then hearing an echo of it). The track retains all the good bits of the previous one (great placement, gut punching LFE, clear dialogue, nicely balanced music, etc) and just polishes it with the addition of that overhead layer - both in terms of direct sounds (Ma Ma's PA speech for example) and enveloping you with ambient sounds. Its a cracking soundtrack, perhaps not quite up to Pacific Rim/Deepwater Horizon of superb, but not far off.
The film? Still as great as it ever was - getting the tone and the characters right was the most important thing and the areas where the Stallone film utterly failed. So it was such a surprise that this film got both absolutely spot on - that OTT mega violence had to be in place for Dredd and its still as gloriously OTT (but never straying too far into absurd like something say Shoot 'Em Up or Deadpool) as ever. Dredd himself is impeccable - its the way in which he deals with Ma Ma's final ultimatum that is the best example of how right they got him: the law IS everything, with everything else completely irrelevant, no matter what the cost.
Plot is almost irrelevant - as long as they got tone and characters right, I'd have watched anything. Yes, I'd maybe have liked more of the comic world (I love the Dark Judges totally) and yes, it did echo something of The Raid, but ultimately the plot was totally what was needed to get the tone and characters right. Judge Anderson did more than enough than just being the 'our entry into this world' character and Heady just scares the crap out of you no matter what she does (and by scares I mean in a way). Oh and Urban kills it. All in, the film works just as well as it did 5 (my god count 'em.....!) years ago - its a total cracker from start to finish.
Summary - the disc offers up a suitable improvement both aurally and visually even on my aging legacy kit and as such should be considered a recommendation for fans of the film. Given that it seems to be so stupidly cheap at the moment, means its even more of a recommendation. Buy it and then give your old rubbish disc to someone else and maybe we'll help get that sequel greenlit......maybe.