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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Sex Doll [Blu-ray]

 

(Sylvie Verheyde, 2016)

 

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Les Films du Veyrier

Video: Shout! Factory

 

Disc:

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

Runtime: 1:42:49.204

Disc Size: 24,806,709,000 bytes

Feature Size: 23,657,078,784 bytes

Video Bitrate: 24.18 Mbps

Chapters: 12

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: July 11th, 2017

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 2.39:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English / French 2950 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 2950 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
DTS-HD Master Audio English / French 1661 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1661 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)

 

Subtitles:

English (for non-English dialogue using the 'none' option), Full English, or Spanish

 

Extras:

• Trailer (1:27)

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: A high-priced call girl navigates the shadowy world of London’s underground sex trade in this provocative and erotic thriller. Virginie (Cesar Award winner Hafsia Herzi) goes about her work as a prostitute with a cool detachment, trading sex with wealthy businessmen for money, but never getting emotionally involved. Virginie’s world is turned upside-down when she meets Rupert (Ash Stymest), an enigmatic stranger with unclear intentions. Risking everything, Virginie plunges into a dangerous affair and finds herself torn between a ruthless madame who forbids such romantic attachments and a dark, sexy man who could be her savior ... or her downfall.

 

 

The Film:

Cesar Award-winner Hafsia Herzi (The Secret of the Grain) plays the central role of Virginie, a beautiful, high-priced call girl plying her trade in London. Her protective madam (Karole Rocher) has one unbreakable rule for her employees, which is that they not become emotionally attached to their clients. That’s not a problem for the chicly black-clad Virginie, whose lack of enthusiasm for her job is clearly evident by her bored, detached facial expression as she services the men in a series of sex scenes that have an anti-aphrodisiac effect.

Virginie’s natural reserve melts when she meets Rupert (male model Ash Stymest, making his film debut), a handsome, heavily tattooed Brit who has followed her into a nightclub. The two soon begin a romantic relationship, but it turns out that her new lover has a secret. His vocation is rescuing young women from the sex trade world (now there’s a job for which there would be no shortage of applicants), but his mission becomes complicated when he finds himself falling in love.

Excerpt from HollywoodReporter located HERE

For Virginie (Hafsia Herzi), a striking French woman who works for an escort service run by the tough-but-tender Raphäelle (Karole Rocher), life is little more than a series of rote sexual — and not particularly sexy — trysts with mostly older Englishmen. She’s one of those “nobodies” going “nowhere”; where she came from — and how she got here — is minimally discussed.

Matching Virginie in the mystery department is Rupert (Ash Stymest), a wiry Brit with runway model looks and a jumble of tattoos, whom she meets in a nightclub. Turns out, they’re kindred spirits, outlaws in a way, who develop an uncertain, slow-burn relationship.

Excerpt from the LA Times located HERE

 

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

Sex Doll looks to have been shot on HD and has some of the deficiencies of that versatile filmmaking process with a bit of smearing and flaring. We presume this is accurate to the film's theatrical presentation and the Blu-ray transfer from Shout! Factory is competent.  The 1080P image quality supports the film well and it looks solid in-motion. There is tight detail in close-ups and some depth. Bright, but true colors. No complaints.

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

We get the option of DTS-HD Master tracks in both 5.1 surround and 2.0 channel. Both are 24-bit - and in the film's original French and English language used. There isn't much need for separation and the dialogue is clean sounding intentionally scattered at times providing a vérité feel. There are subtitles in English and Spanish but even if you choose 'non' there are English subtitles for the non-English language sequences. This is a region 'A' Blu-ray disc.

 

Extras :

Only a trailer. To sell this to a wider audience there should have been a commentary or interviews.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
Sex Doll is a very sad film. It is thought-provoking and you can sympathize with some of the characters. Both the director, and Hafsia Herzi's morose portrayal, do a great job not glamorizing the profession. It's seedy, often ugly. But the film has a bit of style with unique shots and use of the 2.39:1 frame. Obviously, there is sex in the film but hardly any nudity and nothing of a graphic nature (PG-13) with some moaning. It seems as though the message is one over-told these days and it suffers from being a bit banal even for an Indie-esque effort. The bare-bones Shout! Factory Blu-ray produces a decent 1080P presentation - and is a reasonable 42% OFF Pre-Order price at Amazon at the writing of this review. 

Gary Tooze

July 5th, 2017

 

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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