6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Out Of Africa (blu ray) Universal 100th Anniversary Edition...vast improvement over 2010 BD release.
This Universal 100th Anniversary Edition release of Out Of Africa arrives at blu ray with MPEG-4 AVC 1080p 1.85:1 encode. Universal's ground-up restoration and subsequent transfer represents a significant improvement over its previously released BD in 2010. Colours have been fine-tuned and primed to perfection. Skin tones are natural. Black levels are...
Published 23 months ago by Dr. Joseph Lee
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Somewhat overrated star vehicle --- I just don't get it
I assumed that any film that rampaged through the Oscars the way this one did would be rewarding on so many levels. I must be missing something. What I saw was a beautifully filmed but rather ponderous vehicle to two mega-stars who circle around each other like glittering birds that do not want to muss their magnificent plumages. Emotionally, I have rarely found a...
Published on May 27 2004 by chefdevergue
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Somewhat overrated star vehicle --- I just don't get it,
I assumed that any film that rampaged through the Oscars the way this one did would be rewarding on so many levels. I must be missing something. What I saw was a beautifully filmed but rather ponderous vehicle to two mega-stars who circle around each other like glittering birds that do not want to muss their magnificent plumages. Emotionally, I have rarely found a "romantic" film to be so totally bereft of passion or emotion.
I feel this is largely due to Robert Redford playing Robert Redford pretending to be Finch-Hatton. He just seems to so totally out of place in this film, and I really could care less about his accent. He just never seems to be anything other than Robert Redford. In any case, his character, supposedly a free thinker who is more in touch with the Higher Truths that Nature offers, comes off as as a self-absorbed character who never met an emotion he couldn't throw a wall around. The relationship between Finch-Hatton & Blixen comes off as being so frigid & lifeless that I simply could not relate to it on any level.
Meanwhile, the film lumbers along through the Great War (with the producers assuming that viewers are all well acquainted with WWI in East Africa), treating us to great scenic shots. Yes indeed, the cinematography is great in this film. All the Brits saddle up, presumably to do battle with von Lettow-Vorbeck, and off they go. Then they saddle up, and off they go to someplace else. They spend a great deal of time going off to some distant spot or another. Eventually some people die, as they are wont to do, and then some more people die. One of them ends up being Robert Redford, which proves most inconvenient for the story line, and so the movie lumbers towards its end shortly thereafter.
This is not a terrible film by any means. I find the performance of Michael Kitchen (a fine actor who deserves more notice) as Berkeley Cole to be most noteworthy. Also, the cinematography is quite breath-taking and goes a long ways towards redeeming the movie as a whole. I also derived great amusement (not intended by the producers) of watching the not exactly diminutive Michael Gough play the (in real life) itty-bitty Hugh Cholmondeley, Lord Delamere. I laughed every time Delamere was in a scene.
Is it a good film? I suppose so. Is it a great film? I don't see how one can really say that. Is it the most overrated film to win a slew of Oscars? Hardly --- let's not forget "Titanic" and "Around the World in 80 Days," just to name a few. It is an OK film. I guess I was just disappointed because I went into it with higher expectations.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Out of Africa - Film review,
If you're a Sydney Pollack fan you'll sure enjoy this film. Out of Africa, besides the excellent performances of Meryl Streep and Robert Redford, will certainly get your attention with the astonishing landscapes of Africa.
The story is about the life of Karen Blixen, who gets married for convenience and moves to Africa where she starts running a plantation. Things start to go wrong when her husband starts being absent often and cheating on her. Karen, eventually, falls for a hunter, Dennis, but she demands more of the relationship than he is ready to offer. For Dennis his freedom is essential and in the end you're faced with the unexpected.
You can also count on an extraordinary soundtrack and photography, so it is a film that is really worth seeing!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Greatness undoubted, but something critical needs to be said,
First off, so many persons, Amazon.com included, moan about Redford's accentless--exactly which accent was he supposed to use: Highbury? Manchester, Bristol? The Counties (one hour north of London)? .... But then he would fit the bill since the Counties are known for their lack of an accent! Then again he should have said somehting like "bloody gut(good)." Enough trivialities, my major qualm with this film is its portrayal of Women and Empire. Its portrayal of women as participants is misconcieved, portraying Blixen (Streep) as the sole active female in the colony, which is absurd. Nevertheless, the film does touch on a number of historically relevant issues, ranging from single-female migration to the colonies, to the archaic belief that women nurses executed their duty in the name of reason contrasted to Africa's superstitions. Keep in mind that this is her story, with all of her biases intact. (If the subject intrigues you an entire literature has bloomed in the last fifteen years.) Furthermore, Blixens return to Denmark is marked by a distinct severing of ties with Africa. She may have Africa in her heart but Kenya's absebce is what draws out her story. One question: what about the massive Afro-Carribean and Indian population of London today? How did it get there?
5.0 out of 5 stars Out of Africa (Blu-ray),
This review is from: Out of Africa (1985) [Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy] (Bilingual) (Blu-ray)
Excellent film in an excellent package. A gem all the way, not to be missed! Getting this film from Amazon is easy, fast and efficient and no hassle at all. Highly recommended.
2.0 out of 5 stars A magnificent classic film, with a Blu-Ray transfer almost worse than Gladiator...,,
This review is from: Out of Africa [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
Film: ***** | Blu-Ray: ** What a travesty! "Out Of Africa" is such a beautiful film, in so many ways. It has been eagerly awaited by fans of the film, who have looked forward to enjoying it in high definition. Now, unfortunately, it has arrived on one of the detested Universal Studios "flipper" discs (DVD on one side, Blu-Ray on the other, no label art). The results could not be more disappointing.
The image is cleaner, sharper and "better" than the past DVD versions. But that is due entirely to the vastly better bandwidth, 1080p resolution and improved codecs used for Blu-Ray. There is unfortunately excessive edge sharpening, and overwhelming contrast boost. In fact, the over intense contrast levels accentuate the excessive sharpening, calling attention to ringing and halo effects. Surface detail and skin tones frequently have a smeared and over DNRed quality.
The only other major film that has proved as disappointing on Blu-Ray, and for the same reasons (too much sharpening, too much DNR, too much contrast boost), is the much vilified release of "Gladiator". This has led to a rumored re-release and remasterring of "Gladiator". We can only hope that Universal will wake up and do the same with "Out Of Africa".
Universal ought to be ashamed of themselves for not taking more care with the Blu-Ray release of such a major catalog title. It really needed to be remastered for Blu-Ray. But if they were going to use the old transfer then someone should have at least done some adjustments. As it is, it looks like they just pulled the file off the shelf and shoved it out the door, and in a plain case with cheesy looking artwork, no booklet, etc. Shame on you Universal!
5.0 out of 5 stars The Story of a Life,
This is a movie like "The English Patient" that successfully mingles sweeping vistas and larger-than-life events with the small and human things that we can relate to personally. If we find ourselves in a sympathetic vibration with a character in a story, we can be thrilled by feeling closer to the bigger events which might not otherwise rock our personal worlds. These epic events also give a story a yardstick, something by which to measure the mettle of the characters.
Everyone knows something of love, of the joys and difficulties of marriage and the discovery--good and bad--of another person with whom we are intimately involved. This is our entry into the world of this movie. But how many of us have had the chance to, or have succeeded in, living life on our own terms and without compromise as Karen Blixen does? That she is a woman at the turn of the century is only icing on a cake of universal appeal.
This story (I will not detail the plot which others have already eloquently done) lets us watch an extraordinary person being placed in a fantastic, sometimes awkward but ultimately rewarding series of events and trials, and we are able to watch her rise to these occasions and meet life with the bit between her teeth. The backdrop is an entire continent, a setting so sweeping and vast that we can observe whole food chains or witness entire weather systems plying their trade. Karen Blixen is a character that appeals to something in all of us, and she does us proud as a representative of the human race in the continent's dramas.
I have always found Robert Redford thoughtful and engaging, and he does an excellent job here playing maybe the one person who truly understands our heroine and can meet her on her own terms and not be intimidated by her. But the real performance is Karen Blixen herself, played with such perfection, with such a wizard's breath of true life by Meryl Streep. I have never seen an actress more completely inhabit a character than Streep does here, and her virtuosity is breathtaking to watch.
I finish this movie each time feeling a bit worn out. After the roller coaster of exultation and abject loss, of intense love and apopleptic rage, of a woman young and naive grown old and frail, I am able to sleep soundly feeling I have not failed to glimpse ALL of life's secrets.
5.0 out of 5 stars Possibly the most beautiful film ever made,
Reading some of the criticism of this film, I wonder if they saw the same movie that I did. This is an absolute masterpiece in every sense of the word! The photography is stunning, with virtually every scene presenting a sumptuous feast for the eyes. The soundtrack is heartfelt and magnificently blended into the story. The actors are superb, with notable performances by Meryl Streep, Klaus Maria Brandauer and Michael Kitchen. One of the deepest performances is turned in by Malick Bowens as Farah - so wonderfully sensitive. Those who knock Robert Redford playing a Brit would have also undoubtedly knocked him should he have affected a British accent. His performance, to me, was magnificently understated and on target. I find that a lot of guys have trouble with Redford - undoubtedly insecure egos.
Sydney Pollack deserves to have his face carved on the Mt. Rushmore of filmmaking for this timeless, romantic and deeply moving motion picture.
5.0 out of 5 stars Sumptuous, romantic, sad, glorious,
This review is from: Out of Africa (VHS Tape)
Based on the autobiography of Danish writer Karen Blixen (Isak Dinesen), played by Meryl Streep, Out of Africa is nothing short of a masterpiece of photography, casting (Redford plays opposite Streep as her English lover/adventurer. She is married to the cloddish German baron who is rarely home - he'd prefer being out in the bush playing the great white hunter, and when he does come home, he gives her syphilis. Blixen spends her own money supporting her husband and their plantation while falling in love with the country and with Redford. It's a rite of passage of sorts, as she copes with the pressures of family, duty, and social convention, which all vie with her own free and passionate spirit. The scenes of the countryside, the native tribal structure, the love making between Streep and Redford, and the whole pre-war way of life in Africa are beautifully rendered.
This is a winner, one to own and keep and watch over and over.
5.0 out of 5 stars one of my favorites ever,
This movie combines so many different emotions, and sets up a dreamworld and story for you to fall in love with. But if you're thinking of buying it, you've probably already seen it. The only reason to buy this DVD is if you want to see it over and over again, and if you want see the added features...which are interesting once. As far as the movie goes, I can do nothing but give it 5 stars.
4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Intro,
This review is from: Out of Africa (VHS Tape)
If you know little about Isak Dinesen's story, this movie will enthrall you, and give you a good introduction to it. The actors, especially Meryl Streep, do a great job, and the vistas in the background are everything you'd expect in an ode to Africa: plains with buffalo, elephants, giraffe, and the mountains in the background.
However, if you've read anything about this, the movie may be a bit jarring. Specifically, Robert Redford is jarring. I'm sure he's a great actor, but he's just not playing the part of Denys Finch-Hatton. He portrays a Great White Hunter of the British Empire as a Great White Conservationist with a strong American accent. Words are put in Finch-Hatton's mouth that make little sense. Don't give up on the movie however, just concentrate on Streep.
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Out of Africa [Blu-ray] by Meryl Streep (Blu-ray - 2010)
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