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(Miramax Award-Winning Collection)
review by Zach B.
MPAA Rating: PG (For Some Mild Language)
Running Time: 93 Minutes
Starring: Miranda Richardson, Josie Lawrence, Polly Walker, Joan Plowright, Alfred Molina, Michael Kitchen, Jim Broadbent
Screenplay by: Peter Barnes
From the novel by: Elizabeth Rodney Bennett
Directed by: Mike Newell
Features: Audio Commentary with Director Mike Newell and Producer Ann Scott
Specs: 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen,
English Dolby Digital 5.1, English Subtitles, French Subtitles, Spanish
Subtitles, Scene Selection
Released: May 5th, 2009
"Enchanted April" is presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen.
Sadly, the transfer does not to seem to have undergone any sort of
restoration. The worst offense is how excessively grainy the movie is.
I know the film was made on a pretty low budget, but nearly the entire
transfer is drenched in grain and really quite soft. Not helping
matters are the scratches, blemishes, dirt specks and other flaws on
the print. While there is no edge enhancement, there is noise and
shimmering. Fleshtones are a bit pasty, while color saturation is often
underwhelming. In some spots, detail is okay - but that's the only
decent thing I can say about what is otherwise a seriously murky and
ghastly transfer. A shame - the movie deserved much better.
The English Dolby Digital 5.1 track emerges better than the
transfer, but don't get your hopes up too much. This mix is a bit on
the soft side, but that's okay since there is plenty of talking in the
movie. The dialogue does sound clear and is easy to hear, while Richard
Rodney Benett's score sounds good - if slightly muted - through the
channels. Subwoofer use does not amount to much, and while sound
effects do sound okay, discrete surrounds are a bit on the seldom side.
Fidelity is only average, and dynamic range is suitable. An adaquete
track, but nothing more.
English subtitles are also included.
Pretty limited in this department, actually. There is only an Audio Commentary with Director Mike Newell and Producer Ann Scott.
Fans of the movie should enjoy it, even if it is a bit on the dry side.
The two are pretty chatty, and do serve up a great number of anecdotes
throughout the film's running time. Newell discusses how he fell into
the project, and along with Scott, discusses troubles getting financing
and assorted challenges once the production got going. The two also
discuss production design, music and shot composition. There's also a
bit of chatter about the strong work of the actors, and also discussion
of characters. It is a solid track overall that delves into a lot of
topics, and both director and producer have a good rapport - not to
mention still seem fond of their movie. Worth a listen if you like the
This release of "Enchanted April" on DVD is incredibly disappointing.
The movie's transfer is pretty horrid and the 5.1 mix is okay, and
other than a fine commentary - there are no other supplements. For what
you get, the retail is pretty steep and the price should have been
halved. An okay rental since it is a nice movie, but it should only be
a purchase for the film's most ardent fans.