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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

 

directed by Leon Ford
Australia 2010

 

By day, 28-year old Griff (Ryan Kwanten, TV's TRUE BLOOD) is a timid shipping liaison mercilessly bullied by popular co-worker Tony (Toby Schmitz); by night, however, he is a rubber-suited crime fighter patrolling his neighborhood (and usually terrifying his neighbors more than the perceived threat). When wanted posters with his masked superhero likeness (and a mock-up mannequin) are posted around the neighborhood, his older brother Tim (Patrick Brammall) suspects that Griff is indulging in his fantasy world again (Tim got Griff his new job after he was bullied at the old one and Griff is reluctant to tell him that things are repeating themselves). Griff's boss Gary (David Webb, SUPERMAN RETURNS) unhelpfully advises Griff that he is making himself a target of abuse and should try to be invisible by acting normal; of course, Griff takes the invisible part literally and starts working on an invisibility suit. When Tim's klutzy girlfriend Melody (Maeve Dermody, BLACK WATER) - an experimentalist who has tried several times unsuccessfully to walk through walls, with resulting head trauma - discovers Griff's secret, she wants to help him design his invisibility suit and become his sidekick in fighting crime. Meanwhile, at work, Griff has been sneaking into the building at night to engineer a series of high-tech pranks to get back at Tony, but the security cameras reveal that he is not as invisible as he thinks he is and he gets fired (not to mention, beaten brutally by Tony and a thug). Tim, frustrated about losing his girl to Griff (and Griff losing yet another job), is ready to give up on his younger brother when he discovers that Melody is feeding into Griff's superhero delusions. When Griff overhears an argument between Tim and Melody, his fantasy world literally crumbles away and he tries to become normal (with Tim as his corny model); but can Melody convince Griff that he is indeed special and meant for extraordinary things.

The feature debut of writer/director Leon Ford (although he has directed three short films and has about fifteen years of acting credits under his belt), GRIFF THE INVISIBLE manages to balance the somewhat dark mixture of comedy and drama, but the ending is a bit muddled; not knowing whether to choose reality or escapism, and being unable to find that balance between the characters' needs to entertain some fantasy while living in the real world. The scene with Griff and his boss touches upon the bullying aspect, with Griff being blamed for sticking out (apparently in the wrong way, as Tony makes a show of himself without official repercussions) rather than blending in, and advised that he can eventually become normal by faking it (Gary makes the analogy that by speaking with an American accent, he'll eventually become an American); but Melody's treatment of Griff seems less delusional on her part (even though it energizes her to focus her experiments with the invisibility suit) and even a little bit cruel (especially when we are shown her reactions to Griff's attempts to be normal in front of her family, which mirror her reactions to Tim's attempts to charm her parents). It may be the fault of underdeveloped characters and/or themes, or the pressure to keep things light (the PG-13 rating comes from some language and violence, including Griff's imagined extreme attack on Tony, and Griff's own bloody beating), casting Griff as a dreamer rather than a basket case. For the most part, it is an enjoyable flick, due to the sympathetic lead performances of Kwanten, Dermody, and Brammal (as well as Marshall Napier [BABE] and Heather Mitchell [ROGUE] as Melody's parents, who are both given short scenes that lend their previously flat characters unexpected depth).

Eric Cotenas

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Theatrical Release: 19 August 2011 (USA)

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DVD Review: Indomina Releasing/Vivendi Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

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Distribution

Indomina Releasing/Vivendi Entertainment

Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 1:32:24
Video

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.47 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
Subtitles English SDH, French, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Indomina Releasing/Vivendi Entertainment

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• Audio Commentary with director Leon Ford, co-writer Nicole O'Donohue, and actor Patrick Brammall
• Behind the Scenes (16:9; 4:09)
• Anatomy of a Scene
• - Opening Sequence (16:9; 3:16)
• - All in One Shot (16:9; 2:16)
• - Anyhoo (16:9; 2:01)
• Deleted Scenes (16:9; 7:37)
• Appear Calm: Diary of a First Time Director
• - Pre-Production (4:3; 1:25)
• - The Shoot (4:3; 3:12)
• - Post-production (4:3; 2:43)
• Rain Stops Play (16:9; 1:16)
• Patrick's Set Tour (16:9; 1:24)
• Music Video: Don't Give Yourself Away by the Shadow Bureau (16:9; 3:37)
• QR code for exclusive bonus material; start-up trailers for BODYGUARDS & ASSASSINS and DETECTIVE DEE

DVD Release Date: 15 November 2011
Amaray

Chapters 12

 

Comments

Indomina's dual-layer, progressive, anamorphic transfer of GRIFF THE INVISIBLE (shot on Fuji 16mm and blown-up to 35mm from a 2K digital intermediate) has pleasing colors and crisp close-ups, but long and medium shots feature varying degrees edge-enhancement (this was likely applied to the HD master, which is also the likely source of Indomina's concurrent Blu-Ray release HERE. The 5.1 audio mainly highlights the score and surround effects during the action sequences, but is generally restrained. The behind the scenes segment is typical EPK stuff with sound bytes from the main cast (Kwanten and Dermody only appear here, but Brammall and director Ford appear in several of the other extras). The anatomy of a scene segments combine storyboards, finished footage, behind the scenes video, and ADR recording sessions.

The deleted scenes (timecoded and unmatted to 1.78:1 from the 1.85:1 final aspect ratio) feature some wisely deleted scene extensions (not unworkable, just redundant) as well as some interesting bits like Melody trying to demonstrate her ability to walk through walls by running face first into a lamp post). One scene that was unfortunately deleted as a montage of Griff's office spying which showed him using his acquired knowledge about his co-workers for good (anonymously getting a brand new office chair for one of them and a selection of hangover remedies for another) rather than just for blackmail material. Personable director Ford charts out the phases of the shoot in a video diary and actor Brammall gives a set tour. A QR code on the shrink wrap allows in-store potential buyers to view the trailer on their smart phones, and a different QR code on the disc art allows access to some other unspecified extras.

  - Eric Cotenas

 


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DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

 

 

Distribution

Indomina Releasing/Vivendi Entertainment

Region 1 - NTSC

 

 




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