directed by Nobuhiro Yamashita
Japan 2005

 

What distinguishes Nobuhiro Yamashita's Linda Linda Linda from the crowd is a refreshing modesty. Rather than the usual underdog struggle against the odds culminating School of Rock style in the obligatory spectacular stage show and a fat recording contract, Linda Linda Linda's story revolves around four highschool girls for whom learning how to play a single song in time for the school festival is the ultimate challenge.

Known for his deadpan comic minimalism, director Yamashita is an expert at turning the uneventful into the resonant. His previous films Hazy Life (Donten Seikatsu, 1999), No One's Ark and Ramblers all featured aimless youth with nothing better to do than walk or sit around. Plot was never a part of the young director's vocabulary, but the films were all the more memorable for its absence. Compared to these films, Linda Linda Linda is a move toward a more conventional narrative, but only slightly. It sees Yamashita shaking off the Aki Kaurismäki comparisons, but holding on firmly to his own peculiar idiosyncracies, resulting in a film that is refreshing both for the genre and for the director.

With the school festival coming up, three girls decide to form a rock band. Plans are quickly thwarted by the departure of their guitarist, who claims to suffer from an indistinct hand injury but actually fears for her carefully polished nails. Bassist Nozomi (real-life musician Sekine) and designated drummer Kyoko (Maeda) soon find stray keyboard player Kei (Kashii) to fill in on the six-stringer, which leaves only the crucial position of vocalist vacant. After several refusals, they decide to take on the very first passer-by as their singer. Conveniently ignoring the fat otaku who is indeed the first to cross their paths, the choice befalls their carefree Korean classmate Song (Bae). But Song can hardly speak a word of Japanese, let alone sing it. A discarded tape of Linda Linda, the mid-80s hit song by pop punks The Blue Hearts, makes them look beyond their considerable shortcomings as musicians, and while the other three start learning their respective parts, Song sets off for the nearest karaoke bar to rehearse.

Excerpt from Midnight Eye located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: 23 July 2005

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews

DVD Review: Viz Media (US Version) - Region 1 - NTSC

Big thanks to Luiz R. for the Review!

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Distribution

Viz Media

Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 114 min
Video

16:9 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.98 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate

Audio Japanese Dolby Digital (2.0)
Subtitles English, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Viz Media

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 16:9

Edition Details:
• Dual Layered DVD
• Director & Cast
• Culture Tips
• The Blue HEarts Audio FAQ
• Trailers

DVD Release Date: May 8th, 2007
Keep Case

Chapters 12

 

Comments:

Although there are no pluses here this is still a very nice release by Viz Media. I haven't seen any other release by them, but the overall dual-layered quality here is acceptable if marginally flawed by a non-progressive transfer.  

The interlaced image is a bit too noisy, but mostly it looks fine and I didn't find these problems distracting enough to keep me from enjoying any part of the movie.

The sound is a basic 2.0 and since this movie is strongly attached to sound, I wish the sound was better. But it is fine, no problems here also. Extras are listed above.

 - Luiz R.

 



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