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I am Belfast [Blu-ray]
(Mark Cousins, 2015)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Canderblinks Film and Music
Region: 'B' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: 41,603,635,659 bytes
Feature Size: 24,241,827,840 bytes
Video Bitrate: 31.57 Mbps
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: June 20th, 2016
Aspect ratio: 1.78:1
Resolution: 1080p / 24 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
LPCM Audio English 2304 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2304 kbps / 24-bit
DTS-HD Master Audio English 2554 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 2554 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
English (SDH), none
•Interview with director Mark Cousins (13:58)
• Interview with actress Helena Bereen (10:43)
• Interview with cinematographer Christopher Doyle (10:23)
A Cinematic Walk with Mark
• Trailer (1:33)
Description: I Am Belfast sees celebrated filmmaker,
writer and curator Mark Cousins (6 Desires: DH Lawrence
and Sardinia, Here Be Dragons) cast his painterly
eye on his home town, the port city Belfast.
Creative documentary done in a style unique to Mark Cousins – a visual, poetic depiction of Belfast and its citizens, told with love and passion of someone, who has left the city many years ago but is still fascinated by it. The film personifies Belfast and portrays it as an experienced gentle, older woman (played by Helena Bereen), who has seen, and accepted it all. She leads the viewers through the changing landscape of Belfast and spins a tale of its history, while addressing philosophical questions about the nature of man and about a city as an urban phenomenon. Themes brought up in the film range from the landscapes surrounding the city, its changing architecture and social structure to the political and personal repercussions of the Northern Irish conflict.Excerpt from MRQE located HERE
"I am Belfast," says the woman on the beach. "I don't just
mean that I'm from Belfast. I am Belfast."
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
I am Belfast gets an impressive transfer to Blu-ray from BFI. Presumably shot with the versatility of HD the image quality is crisp and filled with awe-inspiring cinematography from the great Christopher Doyle. It's one amazing shot after another and the 1080P resolution, in the 1.78:1 aspect ratio, exports tight visuals with extensive depth and solid contrast. It's pristinely clean showcasing some hi-def detail and there are really no flaws with the rendering. This Blu-ray probably looks like exactly as the production I am Belfast was intended. It seems devoid of imperfections of any kind.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
For the audio - we are given the option of a linear PCM 2.0 channel track at 2304 kbps (24-bit) or a DTS-HD Master 5.1 surround at 2554 kbps (24-bit). There are a few surprisingly separations but most benefitting from the uncompressed options is the score by David Holmes (Out of Sight,'71, Hunger) which supports the film's impressive visuals and gentle tones throughout. Narration is always clean and clear. There are optional English (SDH) subtitles and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'B'-locked.
BFI include separate interviews with director Mark Cousins, actress Helena Bereen and cinematographer Christopher Doyle running over 1/2 an hour in total. There is also an enjoyable piece entitled A Cinematic Walk with Mark Cousins running 18-minutes plus a Making-of documentary as well as a trailer. A DVD is included.
June 5th, 2016
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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