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Hannah and Her Sisters Blu-ray Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p/24
  • Audio Codec: DTS-HD Master Audio 1.0; French Dolby Digital 1.0; Spanish Dolby Digital 1.0
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Region: ABC (Region-Free)
  • Rating: PG
  • Running Time: 107 minutes
  • Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
  • Studio: MGM
  • Blu-ray Release Date: January 15, 2013
  • List Price: $24.99

Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:4/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:1/5]

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:4/5]


Take an outstanding cast, set the film in NYC, and liberally sprinkle with clever dialogue, and you get Hannah and Her Sisters. Older sisters, married successful actress Hannah (Mia Farrow) and perpetually single and drifting Holly (Dianne Wiest) contrast with the blissfully unencumbered lifestyle of younger sister Lee (Barbara Hershey) and her older lover, the painter Frederick (Max von Sydow). Hannah’s husband Elliott (Michael Caine) is in love with Lee while Hannah’s ex-husband, hypochondriac producer Mickey Sachs (Woody Allen) has never quite recovered from their divorce. But it does not stop there as the family elders Evan (Lloyd Nolan) and Norma (Maureen O’Sullivan), their extroverted showbiz parents, air out their own laundry during the family Thanksgiving gatherings. And it keeps on going, with supporting roles handled by the comedic talents of Carrie Fisher, Daniel Stern, Julie Kavner, Joanna Gleason, Lewis Black, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, John Turturro and the uncredited Tony Roberts and Sam Waterston. The storyline covers two years during which we watch the twists and turns encountered by each of the main characters.  If you think that you may have seen this film before, try Ingmar Bergman’s Fanny and Alexander, a masterful work that deals with similar situations. By way of full disclosure, there is alcoholism, drug abuse, and infidelity, themes that pervade other Allen movies. Getting past these issues, Hannah and Her Sisters gets us intimately involved with these challenging siblings and the exorcism of their personal demons.

Video Quality

[Rating:3.5/5]

Compared to a number of films of this era, now a quarter of a century later, Hannah and Her Sisters has an uneven visual quality. There are scenes with some very crisp details alternating with images that are quite grainy. There is also a surprising amount of motion artifact in some of the outdoor shots.

Audio Quality

[Rating:3.5/5]

Like many of Woody’s films, Hannah is dialogue driven. Fortunately, the DTS-HD Master Audio mono soundtrack delivers the goods. Perhaps not the last word in depth or atmosphere, this is a very decent listen in all respects. The music that introduces each episode provides leitmotifs for the highlighted characters.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:1/5]

Nothing, but a short trailer here.

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:3.5/5]

What makes for a good family drama? There are numerous answers to this question, as evidenced by the bizarre siblings of The Royal Tenenbaums or the failed father-child relationships in Everybody’s Fine. Here we get the dynamics of three sisters, made even more compelling by the real life mother-daughter coupling (Maureen O’Sullivan/Mia Farrow) or the couple in an ongoing relationship (Woody Allen/Mia Farrow). The real genius of this film stems from its ensemble approach that marks the essence of great theater. As the story unfolds, director Allen draws us in to real people with real emotions and real flaws. Any viewer with siblings can relate to some but if not all of the situations portrayed here. As an example, go directly to the lunch scene with the sisters and watch the concise five-minute reprise of their entire lives. For many, this critically acclaimed film will not be an easy watch. Seeing families go off the rails, relationships come a cropper, and beliefs detonated will be stressful.  Advisory labeling goes out to those who do tolerate films that dissect the human condition. For the rest of us, Hannah and Her Sisters will reach out and touch our inner beings.

Additional Screen Captures

[amazon-product]B009UTX4M8[/amazon-product]

BestBuy.com:
Hannah and Her Sisters - Widescreen Dolby Dts - Blu-ray Disc

Purchase Hannah and Her Sisters on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com


[amazon-product]B009UTX4M8[/amazon-product]

BestBuy.com:
Hannah and Her Sisters - Widescreen Dolby Dts - Blu-ray Disc

Purchase Hannah and Her Sisters on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:4/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:1/5]


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