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The Woman in the Fifth [Blu-ray]
(Pawel Pawlikowski, 2011)
Review by Gary Tooze
Video: Artificial Eye
Region: 'B' (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: 26,088,837,612 bytes
Feature Size: 24,559,454,208 bytes
Video Bitrate: 34.99 Mbps
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: June 11th, 2012
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio French 1765 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1765 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
Dolby Digital Audio French 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps / DN -4dB
English (SDH), none
• Interview with director Pawel Pawlikowski (13:01 in 576i)
• Trailer (1:53 in 1080P)
Description: Ethan Hawke (Assault
on Precinct 13) plays Harry Ricks in this adaptation
of novelist Douglas Kennedy's erotic thriller by the
director of My Summer of Love & Last Resort.
A writer stranded in Paris falls into a strange relationship with a mysterious woman in this drama from writer and director Pawel Pawlikowski. Tom Ricks (Ethan Hawke) is an American novelist who has been wrestling with writers' block since the publication of his first book. Tom is married to Nathalie (Delphine Chuillot) but their relationship has taken a turn for the worse, and when she goes home to France with their daughter Chloe (Julie Papillon) in tow, Tom flies out in hopes of reconciling with her. However, Tom is robbed shortly after arriving, and is stuck with no money and nowhere to go. Tom is befriended by Sezer (Samir Guesmi), who gives him a job as a night watchman and a room in a cheap hotel, but for all his generosity, Tom isn't sure he trusts his benefactor. Tom meets Margit (Kristin Scott Thomas), a beautiful woman with a literary bent, and ends up spending the night with her. But what begins as a passing fling takes on a more sinister cast as Margit sends Tom through a series of increasingly bizarre experiences in the interest of reawakening his muse. La Femme du 5e (aka The Woman In The Fifth) received its North American debut at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival.Excerpt from MRQE located HERE
Ethan Hawke is perfectly cast as Tom, delivering a finely balanced, edgy performance that we can't help liking, even though – as evidenced by Nathalie's obvious fear of him – we quickly understand that his point of view might not be entirely reliable. Kristin Scott Thomas is equally good as Margit, though her enigmatic nature means that there's very little to her character other than surface slinkiness (not that there's anything wrong with that).Excerpt from Matthew Turner at View London located HERE
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
The Woman In The Fifth sneaks into dual-layered status on Blu-ray and the film is supported with a high bitrate. The image leans to blue/grey with decent detail and no noise. This is transferred in the original 1.85:1 aspect ratio. There is not a lot of depth and contrast is in the mediocre range. Daylight scenes are more impressive but much of the film is dark. This Blu-ray gave me a good but not awe-inspiring presentation - but this may be more a part of the original film experience. I didn't see it at the TIFF Premiere but thought this 1080P looked okay.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
Audio comes in a DTS-HD Master - majority in French - 5.1 surround at 1765 kbps. There aren't a lot of separations - a few - and the film is mostly dialogue-driven with everything being clean, audible and clear. There is also a standard Dolby Digital track also in surround. There is an original score at Max de Wardener supporting some of the film's more suspenseful aspects. There are optional English subtitles and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'B'-locked.
Supplements include a 13-minute interview with director Pawel Pawlikowski who is quite frank about his feelings regarding filmmaking. There is also an HD trailer for The Woman in the Fifth.
June 12th, 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.
Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD
Gary W. Tooze
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