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(aka "Nói" or "Noi the Albino" or "Noi l'albinos" or "Koori no kuni no noi" )

 

directed by Dagur Kári
Iceland/Germany/UK /Denmark 2003

 

The inherent pitfall of offbeat, minor-key quirkfests like Nói is that their characters can seem more quaint than real. While occasionally barely skirting cutesiness, Kári allows the punishing landscape to serve as ballast, instilling the action with a weighty sense of dread. Lemarquis' misadventures in high school—where he sleeps face down in class and tries to get another student to replace him with a tape recorder—earn the biggest laughs, but Kári doesn't allow Nói to get subsumed by whimsy. The best moments bind comedy with prevailing despair, such as when [Nói] finds a temp job digging graves, haplessly pounding a pickax into the frozen ground. When his slumbering brain comes up with an innovative solution to soften the soil, the triumph rings more than a little hollow.

Excerpt of review from Scott Tobias located HERE

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Theatrical Release: February 28th, 2003 (Iceland)

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DVD Review: Artificial Eye (Spine # 270) - Region 2 - PAL

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Distribution

Artificial Eye

Region 2 - PAL

Runtime 1:28:24
Video

1.75:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.65 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

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

Bitrate

Audio Icelandic (Dolby Digital 5.1) and Icelandic (Dolby Digital 2.0)
Subtitles English, English on Commentary Track, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Artificial Eye

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.75:1

Edition Details:
• Director Commentary
• 3 Deleted Scenes with Director's Introductions (14:41)
• Interview/Making of Documentary (19:31)
• Interview with Dagur Kári (29:58)
• Dagur Kári Biography/Filmography
• Ásgrímur Sverrisson Biography/Filmography

DVD Release Date: May 24th, 2004
Keep Case

Chapters 10

 

Comments

Last year I blindly purchased a number of titles from Artificial Eye. While reviewing them, I've come across some that I liked and some that I've disliked, but the one that stands out as the best so far is Dagur Kári's "Nói albínói". Perhaps the film did not receive the attention it deserves since its 2002 release, and that's a shame, for not only is it a great film, but this is also one of Artificial Eyes most impressive releases. The film itself tells the story of Nói, a teen stuck in a small Icelandic town where everyone thinks that he's an idiot. In truth, Nói is one of the most intelligent members of his community, but uninspired by a curriculum well below his capabilities, he's given up. Trapped in his malaise, Nói sees little point in continuing on until the arrival of the lovely Iris to town triggers a series of ill-advised escape attempts, culminating in an unforeseen catastrophe.

I've noticed that this dual-layererd region two release is often praised for its A/V, and it does stand out for a release that is nearly six years old. Of course, it could now be far eclipsed by a high definition transfer, but this is about as good as standard definition can look. The anamorphic transfer here uses a limited color scheme, consisting mainly in cool blues and greens, and the austere whites of the icy exteriors. Although I can't confirm it, I strongly suspect that several scenes were shot through a bluish-green colored lens, and consequently infrequently has realistic looking skin tones. However, I can confirm that the print looks magnificent, without any damage or signs of manipulation.

The sound is quite good as well. Artificial Eye chose to offer two audio tracks, one Dolby Digital 2.0 and the other 5.1. Predictably the 5.1 is the superior of the two choices, with greater depth and clarity, with neither having any noticeable hisses or pops. However, the mono is always competent and, despite its limitations, still makes for an enjoyable viewing. The subtitles here are the standard white and are intrude in on the image.

The extras here are both extensive an informative. Aside from the typical AE filmographies, we get a director's commentary in Icelandic and subtitled in English. Like the later interview and "making of..." documentary, the commentary goes into the inspiration and making of the film. Those who feel the way that I do about the movie will find them invaluable. Also included here are three deleted scenes, that while making for fascinating viewing individually, didn't fit into the film's final cut. All of these added to my appreciation of the film and were well worth the viewing.

In my opinion this is a great release of a borderline masterpiece. Those who are unfamiliar with the film can currently purchase it at a great blind buy price on amazon.uk. It's definitely worth checking out and an easy recommendation.

 -Brian Montgomery

 



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DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

 

 

Distribution

Artificial Eye

Region 2 - PAL

 




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