Directed by Darren Grodsky + Danny Jacobs
USA 2008

 

In a perfect world, childhood friends and Humboldt County co-directors/writers Grodsky and Jacobs would be at the forefront of a cinematic revolution that would blast wide the doors of onscreen unself-consciousness and herald the return of some seriously deep, green, sticky-sweet American introspective filmmaking. Alas, the world is ever more imperfect, and of late we've seen everything from Zach Braff's smart heartache Garden State to the Duplass Brothers' paranoiac love song Baghead attempt to define what it means to be young and free in a world that seems, day by day, moment by moment, increasingly old and shackled and utterly, irreversibly mad. Certainly no one has graduated to within striking distance of Mike Nichols and Elaine May, much less Hal Ashby or even Roger Corman's countercultural biker broadsides. But the green, unassuming beauty of Humboldt County comes seditiously close and manages it with less histrionics, fewer obvious plot twists, and more sublime, generation-spanning performances than most anything outside of the real Humboldt County, Calif. (America's No. 1 producer of marijuana, medical and otherwise, should you wonder). Strong plays an emotionally gut-shot med-school washout who is cast adrift, aloft, and ultimately alive by an extended, cannabis-farming family led by genre stalwart Dourif and Six Feet Under's Conroy. His screen debut is one of the most genuinely affecting twentysomething touchstones since Benjamin Braddock went off the deep end.

Excerpt from the Marc Savlov at the Austin Chronichle located HERE

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Theatrical Release: March 7th, 2008

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DVD Review: Magnolia Home Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC

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Distribution Magnolia Home Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC
Runtime 1:38:18 
Video 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.53 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 English (Dolby Digital 5.1), English (Dolby Digital 2.0) 
Subtitles Spanish, None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Magnolia Home Entertainment

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1

Edition Details:

• A Little Haze: Humboldt County Revisited (6:56 - 4:3 widescreen letterboxed)
 Behind the Scenes (11:32 -
4:3 widescreen letterboxed)
• Deleted Scenes (7:37
- 4:3 widescreen letterboxed)

DVD Release Date: January 13th, 2009

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Chapters: 19

 

Comments:

Another stingy single-layered effort from Magnolia but this transfer is anamorphic, in 1:78:1, and progressive. The film has some strong visuals that didn't seem impeded by the single-layering. Colors and detail looks strong - noise in monochromatic black areas of the frame, but bottom line is that it is certainly watchable and probably not too far from the way it was modestly produced. Good news again that I don't see excessive manipulation and the image is fairly clean.

Audio gives the option for a superfluous 5.1 mix and 2.0 channel. Only Spanish (optional) subtitles are available.

Extras have two featurettes and deleted scenes. It amounts to about a 1/2 hour's worth of material and I was keen enough to watch it all with some interest. 

This is a very good film, but the DVD seems pricey for what they are offering digitally-speaking. Outside the Festival circuit this may be it though with very few theatre's offering. Certainly worth a rent for those not willing to indulge in the high price. I only hope - with its grass-roots/Indie quality, that will appeal to some, - doesn't isolate and deter others - who will enjoy just as much as I did. I give a strong endorsement to the film and exceptional cast - watch it any way you can! 

Gary W. Tooze

 



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Distribution Magnolia Home Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC




 

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