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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Like Someone in Love [Blu-ray]


(Abbas Kiarostami, 2012)



Review by Gary Tooze



Theatrical: MK2 Productions

Video: Criterion Collection Spine #708



Region: 'A' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 1:49:53.128

Disc Size: 46,460,577,684 bytes

Feature Size: 32,585,625,600 bytes

Video Bitrate: 34.99 Mbps

Chapters: 15

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: May 20th, 2014



Aspect ratio: 1.66:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video



DTS-HD Master Audio Japanese 2574 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 2574 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)



English (SDH), none



Forty-five-minute documentary on the making of the film (47:01)
Trailer (2:10)
PLUS: An essay by film scholar and critic Nico Baumbach

DVD of the feature with all the extras of the BD





Description: Abbas Kiarostami has spent his incomparable career exploring the spaces that separate illusion from reality and the simulated from the authentic. At first, his extraordinary and sly Like Someone in Love, which finds the Iranian director in Tokyo, may appear to be among his most straightforward films. Yet with this simple story of the growing bond between a young student and part-time call girl and a grandfatherly client, Kiarostami has constructed an enigmatic but crystalline investigation of affection and desire as complex as his masterful Close-up and Certified Copy in its engagement with the workings of the mercurial human heart.



The Film:

Celebrated Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami takes the helm for this richly textured drama set in Tokyo, and centered on the unusual relationship between an elderly professor and a pretty student moonlighting as a high-class call girl. Arriving at Takashi (Tadashi Okuno)'s home late one night, Akiko (Rin Takanashi) is surprised when her client shows more interest in cooking and conversation than he does in sex. The following morning, Takashi offers to drive Akiko to class. When the pair crosses paths with Akiko's intensely jealous boyfriend (Ryo Kase), they simply go along with his assumption that Takashi is Akiko's grandfather. Meanwhile, this slight deception begins to color Takashi and Akiko's future interactions while yielding some unexpected repercussions.

Excerpt from MRQE located HERE

Abbas Kiarostami’s last film ‘Certified Copy’ – perhaps his greatest commercial success, thanks in no small part to the presence of Juliette Binoche – was the first fiction feature he’d made outside his native Iran. ‘Like Someone in Love’, named after an Ella Fitzgerald song that features in the film, is the second.

Shot entirely in Japanese with Japanese actors in Tokyo, the film is eccentric even by Kiarostami’s standards. A brief synopsis of the plot’s premise makes it sound straightforward enough: a young student having trouble with money, exams, a visiting grandmother and a jealous boyfriend, is reluctantly persuaded by the bar owner who acts as her pimp to visit an elderly man of – it’s said – some import. But right from the opening scene, in which it’s impossible for a while to tell who’s speaking (it’s the girl, offscreen), what's evident is that Kiarostami is once again taking an intriguingly oblique approach to his material.

Excerpt from Timeout Film Guide located HERE

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

Like Someone in Love looks perfect on Blu-ray from Criterion.  The image quality is very strong with super tight lines.  This is dual-layered with a max'ed out bitrate and we can guess that it is an excellent representation of the film. Contrast is layered and the Blu-ray provides a consistently pristine presentation. It is in the original 1.66:1 aspect ratio and there are instances of depth and no noise. This Blu-ray has no discernable weaknesses and supplies a flaw-less 1080P presentation.

















Audio :

Criterion audio transfer is as adept as its video rendering. We get a DTS-HD Master in 5.1 surround at 2574 kbps (as indicated by my software). NOTE: Criterion's website says 3.0 and only 3 channels of the 5 may be functioning  - most probably the case. This is an almost entirely dialogue-driven film experience and aside from some bar-restaurant background noises and the car sequences - there is no crispness or agression separation-wise. But there is some depth when called upon. There is no defining music, per-se. The original Japanese dialogue is clear and clean. There are optional English subtitles and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'A' disc.


Extras :

Criterion include a 47-minute documentary from 2012 entitled 'Making of Like Someone in Love'. It goes behind the scenes via footage shot by Abbas Kiarostami himself during rehearsals, costume fittings and set construction. Also featured are interviews with Kiarostami, actors and crew members.



Kiarostami films are so... unique. Like Someone in Love is a beautiful, simple, contemplative and poetic film. Warm, resonating universal human emotion throughout. The deliberate pace is embraceable. This is close to another masterpiece from Kiarostami and an excellent choice for Criterion to bring to Blu-ray. Strongly recommended! 

Gary Tooze

April 24th, 2014


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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