2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Amazingly acted and engaging movie, but it's a bare-bones release
I found it difficult to knock a star off my rating of 21 Grams because it's such a fine, engaging movie, with superb acting by Sean Penn, Benicio Del Toro, and Naomi Watts. While it offers an okay 1080p video, and a 5.1 DTS-HD Master audio, this Blu-ray, like many other recent Alliance releases, has no menu system (other than a pop-up menu for adjusting audio) and no...
Published on March 12 2009 by K. Lynch
3.0 out of 5 stars This is not blue!
This review is about the Blu-Ray of 21 Grams. I'm not reviewing the movie in itself, just the Blu-Ray. The only thing I'll mention about the movie is that it is worth watching a couple of times. Especially if you loved Amores Perros and Babel.
Now that I've said that, I can says this is the cheapest Blu-Ray disc I've ever bought. And I don't mean "not...
Published on Sept. 3 2009 by Hernan Valdivieso
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Amazingly acted and engaging movie, but it's a bare-bones release,
This review is from: 21 Grams (21 grammes) [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)I found it difficult to knock a star off my rating of 21 Grams because it's such a fine, engaging movie, with superb acting by Sean Penn, Benicio Del Toro, and Naomi Watts. While it offers an okay 1080p video, and a 5.1 DTS-HD Master audio, this Blu-ray, like many other recent Alliance releases, has no menu system (other than a pop-up menu for adjusting audio) and no extras. This is the bare minimum that you can put on a Blu-ray, and for that I had to give it only a 4/5 as opposed to the 5/5 that I'd have given the movie itself.
Truly, it's a movie that should be in your BD collection but you have to be comfortable with what this release lacks before purchasing this particular one. For my part, I'm still happy with it, as 21 Grams is an incredible experience.
3.0 out of 5 stars This is not blue!,
This review is from: 21 Grams (21 grammes) [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)This review is about the Blu-Ray of 21 Grams. I'm not reviewing the movie in itself, just the Blu-Ray. The only thing I'll mention about the movie is that it is worth watching a couple of times. Especially if you loved Amores Perros and Babel.
Now that I've said that, I can says this is the cheapest Blu-Ray disc I've ever bought. And I don't mean "not expensive", I really mean cheaply made. First of all, there is no menu whatsoever. When you start the movie, you get a screen that says the movie will begin shortly. As for the extras, well, you get an English track and a French one... And that's it. In other words, there are no extras. The disc doesn't even include any subtitles for that matter.
Now this wouldn't be so bad if the picture was of great quality, right? Well, unfortunately, the picture quality isn't quite up there. It is one of the worst "Blu" pictures I've seen. At times, I swore I was watching a DVD and not a Blu-Ray disc.
All and all, this is a very disappointing release of a great movie. If you can get the DVD for cheaper, get it instead. You won't miss much.
Rating of the movie: 4.5/5
Rating of the Blu-Ray: 1/5
Overall rating: 3/5
4.0 out of 5 stars not bad,
By A Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars "The Weight We Lose When We Die": Moving But Experimental,
See the characters first. Christina (Naomi Watts) is a mother of two daughters, married to a loving husband. Tragic accident happens to them (that you will see soon), and Chris can be what she was any longer.
The accident was caused by one man Jack (Del Toro), a devoted believer of one sect of religion, and he was also doing time in prison before becoming a fervent member. Jack is also a father of two kids, and one of them knows what the father did.
Christina's tragedy brings another man onto the stage -- Paul (Penn). We know he was going to die -- because of his heart -- but Christina's husband gives another life to him. However, Paul is still unhappy, as if he lost something (perhaps when he should be happy before his wife) And he meets Chris, the one he should never meet. After that, everything starts to rush lie a Greek tragedy.
All these ingredients can be told in the traditional storytelling scheme. The dirctor (of "Amores Perros") strongly refuses that linear narrative, and he gives a very experimental approach to the material --so unique that you should be very attentive to what is going on the screen.
THE FILM'S STORY IS BROKEN into pieces, and they, regardless of chronological order, are all again pieced together, as if hesitating to reveal the whole truth. Thanks to the taut editing and fast pace, you will not lose interest in what happened to these characters to the end, at which the film shows what really happened to them.
And what happened? They turn out so convoluted that you might accuse the director of being too intent on giving one or two too many surprise to us. In fact, though the film's first half is gripping, the second half gets a little dull, for by then we come to realize what is the reality behind these fragmentary scenes. The director tries to outwit us, but the last action of the film is, frankly speaking, preposterous.
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu certainly believes in the power of film as media, and he is good at presenting his story, too. I know he wants to say something -- something about the still undying power of cinema -- sacrificing the accessible narrative method. But you see a dying person, and then see the same person alive and kicking, we find it somewhat disturbing and even pretentious. Why does he go experimental when you get a better way of telling that, in this case, chronological order? We want a better answer to that, in Inarritu's next film.
2.0 out of 5 stars Mediocre at best,
1.0 out of 5 stars Its like a bad puzzle,
So, if you still want to see it, rent it! Don't waste your money buying it.
5.0 out of 5 stars I saw this in theaters and it STILL haunts me on DVD,
The film has many characters, but it pictures Cristina Peck (Naomi Watts), an ex-drug addict turned housewife and mother. She has two wonderful daughters and a kind husband. To remain motivated in life, she swims with her sister Claudia (Clea DuVall) and stays in shape. Paul Rivers (Sean Penn) is a mathematics professor who has a fatal heart problem and needs a new, donated heart soon or he will die. His wife Mary (Charlotte Gainsbourg) desperately wants a child but cannot conceive, and will go to the extremes of artificial insemination to have a family. However, Paul does not agree with this idea. Jack Jordan (Benicio Del Toro) is a spiritual ex-convict who preaches to prisoners in hopes of improving life and staying clean. Marianne (Melissa Leo), his wife, has grown weary of insistently going to church and is upset with his poor parenting skills for their two children. Meanwhile, Cristina's world closes in on her when tragedy strikes and she descends back into drugs and depression. The lives of these three people become intertwined and the audience knows that something terrible is going to happen because the film opens with Cristina screaming in a motel as Paul bleeds and Jack is frozen in place, listening to Cristina's pleading.
"21" is not a film in chronological order. It is, in fact, a film where the ending is shown at the beginning and the characters often know more than the audience, or visa versa. Little details and clues are fed to the viewer as the film progresses and crashes in a stunning finale. The title refers to the supposed weight that everyone loses at the exact moment of death. This is not a misleading title because this is a very dark, grainy, gritty, and upsetting drama. The disturbing images are subtle, and the fabulous photography helps capture what is going on so clearly. Everything is very dark and dim, and the camera is constantly shaking to get a feel for the lives of the characters. The editing is deserving of an Academy Award because it doesn't confuse the audience too much-it just doesn't give them everything they want right in the beginning.
The performances are all Oscar caliber in genius Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu's tour de force. Sean Penn is pitch-perfect, but his character touches familiar ground as in "Mystic River." Benicio Del Toro is fantastic as a very disturbed but honest man. Charlotte Gainsbourg and Melissa Leo both are solid as the wives of the main characters, and at many times, the audience really hates both these women for being so selfish-if a film can do that, then the screenwriter and director have both done their job. However, it is Naomi Watts that really makes "21 Grams." Her performance is so captivating that you can't take your eyes off the screen. She will certainly come out of the Hollywood darkness in this one, making herself a well-known and more respected actress. She deserves an Academy Award because Naomi plays another character that you really want to hate and scream at. She is that good! All of the players are at the top of their game.
If you can sit through darkness, drugs, and depression, this is a great movie with a lot to offer and a shocker of an ending. All the performances are perfect, and the technical production of the film is first rate. "21 Grams" arrives at number 2 on my list of 2003 great films, and deserves all of its acclaim.
3.0 out of 5 stars 21 Grams - drama,
2.0 out of 5 stars 21 Grams,
5.0 out of 5 stars Bold, experimental, heartbreaking, and haunting,
Something extraordinary happened about a third of the way into the film, once the three main characters-- Penn, Watts, and del Toro-- had been in several scenes and I started actually getting into each of their respective storylines. Some of the things I enjoyed were Watts' performance, which had me in tears several times throughout the film, and the irony in some spots of the tragedy in one person's story juxtaposed next to a quick cutaway to humor in another person's story. I found myself intrigued with the way the story was told. The non-linear plot made it so much more haunting once I actually realized what was actually going on and was able to put it together.
To summarize, I thought this was one of the most heartbreaking but strangely beautiful movies I've seen in a long time. I highly recommend it if you want something different and experimental.
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21 Grams (21 grammes) [Blu-ray] by Sean Penn (Blu-ray - 2009)
CDN$ 13.99 CDN$ 11.99