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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Tiny Furniture [Blu-ray]


(Lena Dunham, 2010)



Review by Gary Tooze



Theatrical: Tiny Ponies

Video: Criterion Collection - Spine # 597



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

Runtime: 1:39:31.590

Disc Size: 45,910,341,444 bytes

Feature Size: 27,222,097,920 bytes

Video Bitrate: 31.99 Mbps

Chapters: 18

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: February 14th, 2012



Aspect ratio: 2.35:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video



DTS-HD Master Audio English 2583 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 2583 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)



English (SDH), none



• Director Lena Dunham talks about filmmaking and autobiography in a new interview with writer and filmmaker Nora Ephron (30:26 in 1080P)
• New interview with writer-director Paul Schrader (7:41 in 1080P)
• Creative Nonfiction, Dunham’s first feature film, with an introduction by the director (58:26 in 1080i)
• Four short films by Dunham in 1080i (Pressures, 2006 - 4:00, Open the Door, 2007 - 4:54, Hooker on Campus, 2007 - 4:47 and The Fountain, 2007 - 6:01)
• Trailer (2:28 in 1080P)
• Liner notes booklet with an essay by critic Phillip Lopate





Description: Lena Dunham got her start making YouTube videos, but she emerged as a major talent thanks to the breakthrough success of this exceptionally sharp comedy, which garnered the twenty-four-year-old writer-director-actor comparisons to the likes of Woody Allen. Dunham plays Aura, a recent college graduate who returns to New York and moves back in with her mother and sister (played by the filmmaker’s real-life mother and sister). Though Aura is gripped by stasis and confusion about her future, Dunham locates endless sources of refreshing humor in her plight. As painfully confessional as it is amusing, Tiny Furniture is an authentic, incisive portrait of a young woman at a crossroads.



The Film:

There is a strange space between when you leave school and when you begin work. You are idle as a painted ship upon a painted ocean. You grow restless. You cannot go back and are uncertain how to proceed. "Tiny Furniture" is about Aura, who is becalmed on that sea.

She has graduated from college in Ohio, and returned home to live in her mother’s loft in Tribeca.

Excerpt from Roger Ebert at the Chicago-Sun Times located HERE

Lena Dunham, the 24-year-old director of "Tiny Furniture," admits a fondness for Woody Allen movies. That fact helps explain why her hot-buzz indie comedy has the same energy as Allen's early work, in particular "Annie Hall."

I'm not saying that Dunham is a new Allen, just that such a thing is possible. After all, she is working on an HBO pilot with Judd Apatow.

"Tiny Furniture" is a family affair. Dunham, her mother (photographer Laurie Simmons) and kid sister (poet and Brown freshman Grace Dunham) play versions of themselves, and the story takes place in and around the family's real, white-on-white loft in TriBeCa.

Excerpt from V.A. Musetto at the NY Post located HERE


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

Shot in HD Tiny Furniture looks very impressive on Blu-ray from Criterion. The weaknesses that we sometimes associate with this production format (flaring, waxiness etc.) are barely present at all. Detail is exquisite and there is frequent depth exported on the dual-layered transfer. Contrast is at Criterion's usual high levels and this Blu-ray has consistent image for the spotless visuals. There is no noise or other deficiencies to complain about and colors seem authentic without artificial boosting. This Blu-ray probably looks exactly like the film Tiny Furniture and provides an excellent 1080P presentation.
















Audio :

Criterion provide a DTS-HD Master 5.1 track at 2583 kpbs. It is clean but in keeping with the film is without an abundance of range or depth. This isn't about effects for the 50K budget. There is some original music by Teddy Blanks that also sounds very buoyant. We can only believe the flawless, uncompressed, track is, like the video, a strong representation of the original. There are optional English subtitles and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked Blu-ray disc.


Extras :

Director Lena Dunham talks about filmmaking, autobiography, Woody Allen etc. in a new interview with writer and filmmaker Nora Ephron recorded by Criterion in October 2011. It nice to get to know the artist running 1/2 an hour and is transferred in 1080P. There is also a new 7.5 minute interview with writer-director Paul Schrader sharing his positive impressions of Tiny Furniture. It was recorded by Criterion in September 2011. Creative Nonfiction, is Dunham’s first feature film (just shy of 1 hour). It is from 2009 and includes an introduction by the director. Criterion supply four short films by Lena Dunham - all in 1080i. They are Pressures from 2006 running 4:00, Open the Door, 2007 - 4:54, Hooker on Campus, 2007 - 4:47 and The Fountain, 2007 - 6:01. All very creative and cool. There is also a trailer and liner notes booklet with an essay by critic Phillip Lopate.



There is a lot to like about Tiny Furniture. We have a good-natured, Indie drama with some unique filmmaking talent blossoming out of the narrative. What I find refreshing is the honesty and acceptance of human imperfection. Would this only take hold in mainstream. This isn't the only type of film I want to see but as a distraction - that helps focus on our epidemic of perceptions and superficiality - it is a very worthwhile viewing. The Criterion Blu-ray is as good a presentation as you will find and the extras - especially the shorts - and a great inclusion to discover more about the talent behind the feature. Recommended! 

Gary Tooze

January 15th, 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 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.

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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