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Cinema Verite Blu-ray Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 1:78:1
  • Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
  • Audio Codec: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, French DTS Digital Surround 5.1, Spanish DTS Digital Surround 2.0
  • Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
  • Region: A (Region-Locked)
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
  • Run Time: 90 Mins.
  • Studio: HBO Films
  • Blu-ray Release Date: April 24th, 2012
  • List Price: $24.99

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Purchase Cinema Verite on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:3/5]
The Film
[Rating:3.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:1.5/5]

Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures

(All TheaterByte screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG at 100% quality setting and are meant as a general representation of the content. They do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)

The Film

[Rating:3.5/5]

Cinema Verite tells the story of your everyday American family….or the thought of the typical family. Aiming to capture exactly what makes up your average home, filmmakers set out to chronicle the life of the Louds, your “perfect family.” The Louds were, in fact, the first American family to be the subject of what is now referred to as “reality television” in the PBS series, An American Family. This docudrama aims to give a behind-the-scenes look at that period in American television history.

Once filming begins, the strain is seen in the Loud’s marriage, the ups and downs of raising five children, as well as the criticism Pat Loud received for asking for a divorce and openly supporting her gay son. Serving as not your run-of-the-mill television show, Cinema Verite, while brief in length, is quite the fascinating glance into the world of exactly what the average family is like.

On paper, your average family might go something like this. Mom and Dad work 9-5 (or 8-5 take your pick), have 2 kids (1 boy, 1 girl), a dog (or cat) and, of course, the white picket fence. Sounds like the ‘paper’ family no? Cinema Verite showcases the exact opposite definition. The Louds, billed as the “perfect” family, end up being more realistic, more human that anyone might have ever imagined. That aspect, along with the strong acting by those involved, make Verite something that works, something worth looking into.

Video Quality

[Rating:4/5]

The 1:78:1 framed, AVC/MPEG-4 encoded transfer is solid throughout. The film tends to use the side of the color spectrum that features colors that pop off the screen. Yellows, reds and blues tend to dominate here, all of which showcase fine detail. Darker colors, like your blacks, also hold solid detail. Flesh tones, for the most part, are accurate as are contrast levels. The film’s print is in good condition with no real notice of noise, artifacts or anything else that might hinder the strength of this transfer. All in all, I found no real issue here. A solid effort by HBO.

Audio Quality

[Rating:3.5/5]

The film’s provided DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track serves the film well. Dialogue, which makes up a majority of the film’s sound mix, is well reproduced throughout with no real instance of drop out. While this mix does tend to be front heavy, there are a few instances where we are given some sense of atmosphere. In particular, the film’s score by Rolfe Kent does give a bit of life to the mix, allowing the surrounds to show themselves.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:1.5/5]

The included supplements are presented in HD:

  • The Making of Cinema Verite – Running a scant 3:25, this serves as a basic teaser for the film.
  • Audio Commentary with Directors Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini and Actress Diane Lane

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:3/5]

Cinema Verite is an interesting look into what we may consider to be the “perfect” family. HBO Films aims to change this definition and, for the most part, they succeed in that aspect. Also successful is the technical presentation found within. I’d say definitely give this one a glance as the subject is quite interesting.

Additional Screen Captures

[amazon-product]B0041KKZIC[/amazon-product]

Purchase Cinema Verite on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:3/5]
The Film
[Rating:3.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:1.5/5]

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