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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Tangerine [Blu-ray]

 

(Sean Baker, 2015)

 

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Duplass Brothers Productions

Video: Magnolia Home Entertainment

 

Disc:

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

Runtime: 1:27:49.389 

Disc Size: 21,096,181,830 bytes

Feature Size: 14,013,315,072 bytes

Video Bitrate: 17.98 Mbps

Chapters: 12

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: November 10th, 2015

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 2.35:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1851 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1851 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)

 

Subtitles:

English (SDH), French, Spanish, none

 

Extras:

Catching Up with Kiki and Mya - Experiences, Characters and The Big Screen (10:15)

• Walking the Street - Exploring the Style and Production (18:01)

• Finding the Actors - Completing the Cast of Tangerine (20:36)

• Tangerine Visual Style Test (2:20)

Theatrical Trailer (2:08)

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: It's Christmas Eve in Tinseltown and Sin-Dee (newcomer Kitana Kiki Rodriguez) is back on the block. Upon hearing that her pimp boyfriend (James Ransone, STARLET, "Generation Kill") hasn't been faithful during the 28 days she was locked up, the sex worker and her best friend, Alexandra (newcomer Mya Taylor), embark on a mission to get to the bottom of the scandalous rumor. Their rip-roaring odyssey leads them through various subcultures of Los Angeles.

 

 

The Film:

A transgender prostitute (Kitana Kiki Rodriguez) is released from prison and meets her friend at a donut shop. She learns that her boyfriend and pimp (James Ransone) is cheating on her and begins a search through the neighborhood for retribution.

Excerpt from MRQE located HERE

Tangerine is a heartwarming tale of humanity punctuated by the clack of prostitutes' heels on sun-baked L.A. streets, by screaming matches in divey motels, and the admonishments of a doughnut-shop owner threatening to call the cops if everybody doesn't shut up.

With a spirit of genuine curiosity and generous fun, director Sean Baker dives into a certain subculture - transgender sex workers, the men who troll for them, the dealers and pimps trying to control everything - cruising around the seamier stretches of Hollywood on the day (and night) before Christmas. Baker's movie was shot with iPhone 5s, giving it a jumpy, in-your-face, verité vibe. The December light is quite lovely, too.

Excerpt from Philly.com located HERE

There’s no hope in Tangerine. It’s not a completely negative film–and it’s often quite funny–but there’s no hope. Director Baker leaves the most devastating part of the film in the viewer’s mind. The movie ends. The lives of the characters do not; Baker goes out of his way with these beautiful montages set to a various types of music to give the viewer time to consider, to anticipate, to reflect on the film’s contradiction. Baker never asks the viewer to empathize, even when a character’s sympathetic, likable.

Excerpt from TheStopButton located HERE

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

Tangerine was remarkably filmed on a Apple iPhone 5S with a simple Moondog Labs anamorphic adapter - recording at 24fps and in 1080P (I think there was also an App involved.) It is now offered on Blu-ray from Magnolia. This appears to be directly from the digital source and has all the benefits of that format (tight visuals, convenience, time) and some of the weaknesses (flaring, less balanced colors, extensive, often jittery, hand-held modulations etc.) The look border on saturation but this buoys the style - daylit shots are bright and determined. This is single-layered with a modest bitrate and quality is as consistent as the process would allow. There is no noise. This Blu-ray appears to provide an authentic replication of the film's original appearance - which is all we can ask.

 

CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

The audio is in a DTS-HD Master 5.1 channel at 1851 kbps. Dialogue is, imperfectly, scattered as a function of the limited production equipment and there is not much in the way of effect separation but the soundtrack is a wonderful mixture from Harry Horlick and his Orchestra's Toyland to a mélange of modern music by DJ Heemie and DJ Lightup, Mr. Batou performing Do You Speak Ikea? etc. - all the way to the other end of the spectrum with Beethoven's Coriolan Overture, Op. 62. The bass has notable depth. It sounds perfect to me. There are optional subtitles (which are helpful at times) and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.

 

Extras :

Baker's Starlet had a commentary and I would have appreciated one here but there are still some revealing supplements. Catching Up with Kiki and Mya - Experiences, Characters and The Big Screen runs just over 10-minutes and allows the duo to freely impart reflections post - including false bravado and insecurities. Walking the Street - Exploring the Style and Production spends almost 20-minutes on important details of the production. I also liked the 20-minute Finding the Actors - Completing the Cast of Tangerine where the casting process for Tangerine is explained. There is a short piece entitled Tangerine Visual Style Test and a theatrical trailer. No liner notes.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
Firstly, Tangerine is a beautifully realized film. As with Sean Baker's Starlet, you can really get the sense of intelligent filmmaking behind the unconventional production. I would use the term 'brilliant side of Indie' and, almost, Dardenne'esque in its ability to convey emotion through practically paced visuals. I thought this Magnolia Blu-ray was a real treat and I am so glad to have been exposed to this film. This is cinema to see - despite the less-comfortable, but fully realistic, characters, occupations, circumstances and language - we strongly endorse! Exceptional stuff - don't miss it! 

Gary Tooze

November 1st, 2015

 

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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