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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Rabbit Hole [Blu-ray]


(John Cameron Mitchell, 2010)



Review by Gary Tooze



Theatrical: Olympus Pictures

Video: Lionsgate



Region: 'A'-locked (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 1:31:28.524

Disc Size: 32,468,280,197 bytes

Feature Size: 28,998,081,216 bytes

Video Bitrate: 31.10 Mbps

Chapters: 33

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: April 19th, 2011



Aspect ratio: 1.78:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video



DTS-HD Master Audio English 3482 kbps 7.1 / 48 kHz / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Dolby Digital Audio French 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps / DN -4dB
Commentary: Dolby Digital Audio English 384 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 384 kbps / DN -31dB



English (SDH), English, Spanish, none



• Commentary with the Director John Cameron Mitchell, Writer David Lindsay-Abaire, and Director of Photography Frank G. DeMarco

3 Deleted Scenes (3:07 in 1080P)

Trailer (2:32 in 1080P)



Description: This is the extraordinary story of Becca and Howie. Eight months ago, they had a picture-perfect life with their young son. Now, they are posing as normal in the wake of an enormous loss; blindly looking for footing in a sea of new emotions. This is the remarkably moving journey of a couple finding their way back to love.


Becca and Howie Corbett are returning to their everyday existence in the wake of a shocking, sudden loss. Just eight... months ago, they were a happy suburban family with everything they wanted. Now, they are caught in a maze of memory, longing, guilt, recrimination, sarcasm and tightly controlled rage from which they cannot escape. While Becca finds pain in the familiar, Howie finds comfort. The couple keeps trying to find their way back to a life that still holds the potential for beauty, laughter and happiness. The resulting journey is an intimate glimpse into two people learning to re-engage with each other and a world that has been tilted off its axis.



The Film:

Nicole Kidman is just astonishing in Rabbit Hole — subtle, fierce, brutally funny, tender when you least expect it, and battered by the feelings that hit her when she forgets to duck. Kidman plays Becca, a mother coping with the impossible fact that six months ago a car struck and killed her four-year-old son as he ran into the street. You can't deal with that. But Becca must. So must her husband, Howie (a superb Aaron Eckhart). They try the usual routes, from God to grief counseling, but they need to carve their own path without destroying their marriage.

Excerpt from Peter Travers at Rolling Stone located HERE

Eckhart manages to match Kidman’s portrayal of grief without mirroring it. The fight they have when she accidentally erases one of his videos of Danny should feel terrifying in its intensity, but what comes across most powerfully is the tragedy of a loss that will never go away, a weight that may, paradoxically, even come to seem a comfort.

The film’s final scene is gentle without being cloying, offering a candle-flicker of hope. If you’re a parent, be sure to allow for some post-movie discussion time — and don’t be too hard on yourself if you wake up the kids when you get home, just to hug them.

Excerpt from Chris Knight at the National Post located HERE

Image :    NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

Rabbit Hole has a thickness, clarity and depth that we have come to expect from the Blu-ray format.  The image is notable for the rich contrast which exhibits healthy, solid black levels with no prevalent noise. Some may find it slightly crushed at times. Colors are exuberant but stay under the level of abundant manipulations. Daylight scenes are highly detailed and visually the film keeps its stylistic appearance consistent throughout. There are plenty of scenes with some depth and the dual-layered transfer, with appropriate bitrate, does its job. Now I should mention I had heavy pixilation on my computer and one Blu-ray player - but NOT a second, different player - where it played without issue. This strikes me as a firmware problem (unconfirmed) but I suspect most people will not have the interference that I initially had. This Blu-ray appearance reflects very positively on the film experience (assuming your player is updated sufficiently).
















Audio :

The Blu-ray supplies a DTS-HD Master 7.1 track that is fully up to any tests the film may lob in its direction. The lossless performs without any issue and the film - is obviously - not one to export dramatic separations - although subtle ones exist. Anton Sanko's score supports the film gently and sounds flawless. There are optional subtitles and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.


Extras :

This Blu-ray offers a fine commentary with the trifecta of the director John Cameron Mitchell, the writer (and screenwriter) David Lindsay-Abaire, and DoP (Director of Photography) Frank G. DeMarco. Taking turns imparting information - it's a sound grouping who cover both dry details on production and probe the guts of the story. It is well worth the listen for those interested to indulge. Aside from that are 3 brief deleted scenes - seemingly unnecessary to the gravitas of the film - and there is also a trailer running 2.5 minutes. The Blu-ray disc features the ability to establish bookmarks.



Excellent character portrait film that I can whole-heartedly endorse. Kidman is an impressive actress - I frequently enjoy her work. The film can be draining with the precision of all the amazing performances at the center of such an emotional topic. This is definitely a film experience I would like to repeat.  The Blu-ray gives and acceptable a/v presentation and the commentary is offered as a solid supplement. Absolutely recommended! 

Gary Tooze

April 14th, 2011


About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 3500 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.

Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.

Gary's Home Theatre:

60-Inch Class (59.58” Diagonal) 1080p Pioneer KURO Plasma Flat Panel HDTV PDP6020-FD

Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD Player
Momitsu - BDP-899 Region FREE Blu-ray player
Marantz SA8001 Super Audio CD Player
Marantz SR7002 THX Select2 Surround Receiver
Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

APC AV 1.5 kVA H Type Power Conditioner 120V

Gary W. Tooze






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