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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

The Look aka Charlotte Rampling: The Look [Blu-ray]


(Angelina Maccarone, 2011)



Review by Gary Tooze



Theatrical: Prounen Film

Video: Lorber Films



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

Runtime: 1:38:35.900

Disc Size: 24,982,530,515 bytes

Feature Size: 22,918,070,208 bytes

Video Bitrate: 27.86 Mbps

Chapters: 12

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: April 10th, 2012



Aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video



LPCM Audio English 1536 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps / 16-bit



English (burned-in for the French)



Trailer (1:38)






Description: In this intellectual travelogue La Légende Charlotte Rampling muses with friends and colleagues on celebrity, age, desire and love. Rampling debates and cogitates with creative as diverse as photographers Peter Lindbergh and Juergen Teller and writer Paul Auster as she travels from Paris to New York. She converses in cafés and houseboats, and delves into the very essence of life, death and The Look.

Selected for the Cannes Classic stream at the 2011 Festival de Cannes, The Look is a beautifully shot documentary film full of contemplation and intrigue.


A biographical study of legendary actress Charlotte Rampling (Babylon A.D., Swimming Pool), told through her own conversations with artist friends and collaborators, including Peter Lindbergh, Paul Auster, and Juergen Teller. Intercut with footage from some of Rampling's most famous films, this "self-portrait through others" is a revealing look at one of our most iconic screen stars.


This unique documentary about Charlotte Rampling features the stress sitting down to conduct interviews about her with... a number of artists who have worked with her or know her. That footage is interspersed with clips from some of her best movies. Among the people she sits down with are Joe Fleury, Peter Lindbergh, and author Paul Auster.



The Film:

Actors spend their lives being defined by other people: the characters they play, the directors who shape their performances, the photographers who light them, the journalists who analyze them, and the fans who love them. Angelina Maccarone’s documentary Charlotte Rampling: The Look gives the acclaimed British actress an opportunity to turn the tables. Maccarone provides the frame, but Rampling fills it, talking about her life and art, and giving her opinions about aging, beauty, sexuality, passion, and pretense. Rampling knows she was fortunate to be born photogenic—with heavy eyelids that give her a look of perpetual world-weariness—but she’s tried to capitalize on her good genes by taking on controversial roles in movies like Georgy Girl and The Night Porter, then throwing all of herself into a project. She takes these gigs seriously.

Excerpt from The Onion A.V. Club located HERE

A lesson to be gleaned from “Charlotte Rampling: The Look,” Angelina Maccarone’s fascinating and frustrating documentary portrait of an enigmatic star, might be that it would be foolish to suppose that Ms. Rampling is anything like the transgressive women she portrays on the screen. The same is true of her photographic image, that of a heavy-lidded femme fatale. Could “The Look” be an accident of physiognomy? In this evasive film neither the director nor the star is about to speculate.

Ms. Rampling, now 65, belongs to the short list of cult movie actresses whose combination of exotic beauty, intelligence and fierce independence lends them a particular erotic mystique. Along with Jeanne Moreau and Isabelle Huppert, she is a screen personality whose smoldering characters project an imperial confidence tinged with disdain. Those catlike eyes, lowered in a seemingly seductive gaze in tandem with a Mona Lisa smirk, send the same danger signals associated with Ms. Rampling’s Hollywood prototype, Lauren Bacall. Both also have deep voices that convey an ominous authority.

Excerpt from The NY Times located HERE

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

Charlotte Rampling: The Look used the same consistent production attributes for the entire documentary and looks fine on Blu-ray from Lorber. The single-layered transfer exports a decent image with some depth, reasonably tight lines and acceptable contrast. There really isn't much more to say - the title sequence is interlaced but the feature is progressive. It gave me a worry-free presentation with Rampling interviewed in the foreground of some interesting backdrops. It's super than SD - but I don't think it was a big factor in the value of the documentary - which was enjoyable.













Audio :

Lossless linear PCM 2.0 stereo at 1536 kbps. It easily handles the dialogue - zero effects and no need for any surround. Competent, clean and unremarkable. The track transfer does its job as intended and expected. The only subtitles are obligatory when there is some French spoken near the end of the documentary. My Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.


Extras :

Nothing but a trailer (and other Lorber trailers) and the, largely unnecessary, 'stills gallery'.



Pretty interesting look at an iconic world cinema actress. Charlotte Rampling is one of those people who seem perpetually 'together'. She clearly sees the parameters of her existence and lives within them positively and successfully. I enjoyed the Blu-ray but suspect it has a narrow audience. Those keen on her will be entertained and enlightened. 

Gary Tooze

April 11th, 2012



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 5000 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.

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