5.6 C
New York
Wednesday, December 2, 2020
Advertisement

La Môme (La Vie En Rose) [UK Import] Blu-ray Review

lavieenroseunited-kingdom-flag-orb-icon-32px

  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
  • Audio Codec: English DTS-HD High Resolution 5.1
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: B
  • Discs: 2 (1 x BD25 + 1 x R2 DVD)
  • Actors: Marion Cotillard, Sylvie Testud, Pascal Greggory, Gérard Depardieu
  • Director: Olivier Dahan
  • Studio: Icon Home Entertainment
  • Release Date: December 1, 2008
  • List Price: £24.49
[amazon-product align="right"]B000VNJEH6[/amazon-product]
Overall
rating4
The Film
rating5
Video Quality
rating3-5
Audio Quality
rating3-5
Supplemental Materials
rating2-5

Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures

More screen captures (17 total)

(Screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG and thus are meant as a general representation of the content and do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)

The Film

rating5

There seems to be a common thread, a single vein running through the lives of all great artists. Absentee parents, drug and alcohol abuse, an early life of poverty — one might think living these hardships are a prerequisite to creating great art. Edith Piaf’s (Marion Cotillard) life paralleled that of many of her contemporaries, even prompting a nod from director Olivier Dahan at the life of Jazz singer Billie Holiday.

Debuting at the Berlin Film Festival in 2007 and starring Marion Cotillard who would go on to win an Oscar and BAFTA for Best Actress, La Môme, or La Vie En Rose, as it is known outside of France, is a biopic from director Olivier Dahan about the late French chanteuse Edith Piaf.  Using a nonlinear approach, La Vie En Rose uses flashes from the latter part of Piaf’s life and intertwines them with her past to tell the story of her rise from the slums of Paris as a child to the height of popularity as an international celebrity.

bddefinitionlavieenrose-k1080

Piaf rose to sudden fame as a street singer when she was discovered by nightclub owner Louis Leplée, and was labeled La Môme Piaf, or The Little Sparrow, because of her small stature and powerful singing voice.

Marion Cotillard portrays Edit Piaf brilliantly in this moving and evocative film, enduring hours of makeup preparation everyday to go through the aging process in order to portray Piaf in the late stages of her life, when she was suffering from liver cancer. Portraying an icon for any actor is always a thin line between absolute imitation and injecting one’s own personality and skill into the character, and Cotillard found that balance. Not only did she morph into the monument that is Edith Piaf, even getting some snippets of her own vocals left in the film by Olivier Dahan, she owned the character. It is this that makes her portrayal so moving and so endearing.

La Vie En Rose is so staggeringly heartbreaking in its deliverance of the life story of Edith Piaf it is nearly impossible not to be overtaken by an abundance of emotions. Dahan also succeeds in making La Vie En Rose a universal film that reaches beyond the borders of France; something fitting for a performer who, though most popular in her native country, was well-known and much-loved beyond its borders, even if for only a few songs from her huge catalogue.  It is an international film, by all means, and that is born out by the accolades granted upon its star, Marion Cotillard, around the world.  One does not have to be French or even a fan of Edith Piaf to be taken by La Vie En Rose, one simply has to watch the enchanting performance by Ms. Cotilllard and the thoughtful direction by Olivier Dahan.

Video Quality

rating3-5

bddefinitionlavieenrose-i1080

La Vie en Rose’s 2.35:1 theatrical aspect ratio is delivered on this BD25 disc in an AVC/MPEG-4 1080p/24 high definition encoding from Icon. At first glance the picture looks pleasing enough, with a good amount of texture, relatively fine yet subtle grain structure and a lack of any obvious compression artifacts. Unfortunately, black levels are so low, that the film suffers from black crush in many of its scenes and contrast often clips as well, so throughout the film, much of the detail is masked. Flesh tones are also a less than accurate. On the plus side, the source is clean, as one woud expect from a film this recent, but those not enraptured by the story will not find much to rave about in the picture quality.

Audio Quality

rating3-5

bddefinitionlavieenrose-f1080

La Vie en Rose is provided with a French DTS-HD High Resolution 5.1 (48Khz/24-bit) soundtrack with forced English subtitles for this Blu-ray release from Icon. It’s unfortunate that for a film that relies on its musical content as much as its dialogue that the lossless Master Audio variety of DTS-HD was not used, but the High Resolution encoding works well enough. The mix is engaging, with good use of the surround channels for ambient and discrete effects. Performance sequences are lively and various scenes of parties and restaurants are filled with chatter and movement. There is not  much low frequency extension in this sound mix, so don’t expect the sound to rattle the floorboards.

Supplemental Materials

rating2-5

bddefinitionlavieenrose-g1080

Apart from the original French theatrical trailer provided in high definition, all of the supplemental materials for this release are provided on a separate Region 2 coded DVD in the PAL standard definition format. Of particular interest to fans of Edith Piaf will be the final featurette on the disc, Edith Piaf, that obscure object of desire (1.33:1/PAL), which is a mini-documentary on the life and influence of Piaf.

The supplements available on this release are:

Disc 1:

French Trailer (2.35:1; Dolby Digital 5.1)

Disc 2: (Region 2 DVD/PAL):

  • Making of La Vie en Rose (1.33:1/PAL)
  • Deleted Scenes (1.33:1/PAL)
  • Edith Piaf in New York (1.33:1/PAL) — Marion Cotillard and the filmmakers head to New York to promote the release of the film.
  • Edith Piaf, that obscure object of desire (1.33:1/PAL)

The Definitive Word

Overall:

rating4

bddefinitionlavieenrose-l1080

Despite the flaws of the transfer, La Vie En Rose is a compelling look at the life of Edith Piaf with a top-notch performance from Marion Cotillard that earned her a well-deserved Best Actress Oscar. While this Blu-ray release may not be absolute reference quality, it will still be the best version available of this moving film that shouldn’t be missed.

Advertisement

Related Articles

HBO Original: The Undoing (TV Series Review)

David E. Kelley gives us an open-and-shut murder case that will be unlikely to fool most of its viewers with The Undoing.

FX Original Black Narcissus (TV Series Review)

A buttoned-up remake of the classic 'Black Narcissus' in the form of a 3-episode series that portrays the physical and emotional struggle of English nuns to establish a school in a remote palace in the Himalayas.

Perry Mason: The Complete First Season (Blu-ray Review)

A complex neo-noir origin story for the famous criminal defense attorney gets a gorgeous Blu-ray release from Warner Bros.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Stay Connected

301FansLike
0FollowersFollow
724FollowersFollow
- Advertisement -

Notice of Compliance with FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION 16 CFR Part 255

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR part 255 guidelines, this website hereby states that it receives free discs and other theatrical or home entertainment “screeners” and access to screening links from studios and/or PR firms, and is provided with consumer electronics devices on loan from hardware manufacturers and/or PR firms respectively for the purposes of evaluating the products and its content for editorial reviews. We receive no compensation from these companies for our opinions or for the writing of reviews or editorials.
Permission is sometimes granted to companies to quote our work and editorial reviews free of charge. Our website may contain affiliate marketing links, which means we may get paid commission on sales of those products or the services we write about. Our editorial content is not influenced by advertisers or affiliate partnerships. This disclosure is provided in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR § 255.5: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Latest Articles

HBO Original: The Undoing (TV Series Review)

David E. Kelley gives us an open-and-shut murder case that will be unlikely to fool most of its viewers with The Undoing.

FX Original Black Narcissus (TV Series Review)

A buttoned-up remake of the classic 'Black Narcissus' in the form of a 3-episode series that portrays the physical and emotional struggle of English nuns to establish a school in a remote palace in the Himalayas.

Perry Mason: The Complete First Season (Blu-ray Review)

A complex neo-noir origin story for the famous criminal defense attorney gets a gorgeous Blu-ray release from Warner Bros.

Popeye: 40th Anniversary Edition (Blu-ray Review)

An excellent release on Blu-ray of this long maligned but still fun to watch film.

The Hobbit: The Motion Picture Trilogy (4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review)

The Hobbit: The Motion Picture Trilogy is arriving for the first time on 4K Ultra HD remastered in Dolby Vision and overseen by Peter...
%d bloggers like this: