The New Daughter (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 05-07-2010, 12:22 PM - Thread Starter
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attachment.php?attachmentid=174629&d=1272940280
The Review at a Glance: ( max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109944&d=1210373697

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109942&d=1210373697

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

86






Studio and Year: Anchor Bay Films - 2009
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 108 minutes
Genre: Suspense/Thriller/Horror

Disc Format: BD-25
Encoding: VC1 (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.35:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English PCM 5.1 Surround Sound
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
Starring: Kevin Costner, Ivana Baquero, Samantha Mathis
Directed by: Luis Berdejo
Music by: Javier Navarrete
Written by: John Travis (screenplay), John Connolly (short story)
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: May 18, 2010







"There's something wrong with Louisa....."



Film Synopsis:

John has his hands full raising his youngest child Sam and especially his adolescent daughter Louisa. As Louisa’s troubling behavior continues, far beyond the average tween angst and frustrations, John begins doubting his parental abilities. But when events around the James household start taking on an increasingly mysterious nature, John realizes that his family may be in mortal danger.




My Take:

How and why Kevin Costner chooses his rolls is sometimes beyond this reviewer. At least he takes risks and is not pigeonholed. When most think Kevin Costner they think--Baseball flicks (Field of Dreams, For Love of the Game- for full disclosure yes, I did cry like a baby for both of these), major big budget flops (Waterworld, The Postman) and of course Dances with Wolves. When I think of Kevin Costner a few of my favorite films come to mind--The Untouchables, Silverado and the grossly underrated Mr. Brooks. Over the last 30 years he has been one of my favorite actors, always mixing it up and not being afraid of failing--having an open-mind choosing projects. That brings us to today’s feature, the limited release and for all intents and purposes, straight to video, 'The New Daughter'.

'The New Daughter' was methodically directed by Spanish Director Luis Berdejo who penned 2007’s ‘[Rec]’ which was Hollywood-ized as 2008’s ‘Quarantine’. He has a great eye for composition using long slow shots that lull , building an inherent sense of suspense. Ivana Baquero, the girl in ‘Pan's Labyrinth’, in her English-speaking film debut, plays Costner’s daughter Lousia. She is entering womanhood just as her whole world is thrown upside down. Her Mother and Father have just divorced and she is moving with her Father and younger Brother to a rural community 100 miles from home. Behind their new house is a random huge dirt mound that Lousia seems to be drawn to. She likes to spend time there, and apparently likes digging around since she comes home with dirty shoes and hands all too often. Lousia begins acting strange and distant, sleepwalking and not remembering; dad finally starts to think there is more happening here than her first period and and their newly awkward relationship. I don't want to get into the plot too much more as I did enjoy 'The New Daughter’s' storyline, even with its numerous faults and at times contrived plot devices. It heavily borrows from many horror films (Poltergeist, The Decent, Amityville), but somehow it feels fresh and original. I was not prepared for the finale which hit below the belt and hard. 'The New Daughter' was much better than anticipated and was kind of like a plane ride. It sat on the tarmac for a while...almost too long: but its take off and flight were fast and furious.




Parental Guide:

Rated PG-13 for thematic material including violence, disturbing images and brief strong language.





AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

Audio: 88



  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373694

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373698

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373697

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373697

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373697


Video: 84



  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373697

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373698

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373698

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373696


‘The New Daughter' comes to Blu-ray Disc from Anchor Bay featuring 1080p VC-1 encoded video that has an average bitrate of 22.4 mbps and Lossless PCM 5.1 Surround Sound that has an constant bitrate of 4.6 mbps.

Anchor Bay has done a nice job with the high definition presentation of ‘The New Daughter'. Its color palette is a bit over-saturated, lending skin to look a bit on the orange side. The over-saturation does add stylistically to the film giving its overall look a bit of pop. That coupled with it being sharp and detailed make this a fun film to watch. What I enjoyed was its balance of looking high definition and still looking like film. Being shot in 35mm, it still had grain intact but nothing overbearing. Unfortunately the black level and shadow detail were ‘The New Daughters' Kryptonite; its weakness's were apparent when things got dark. I noticed the blacks almost give in when our protagonist was trudging in the dark; the best I can describe what I saw was snowy speckles of white over the image. Thankfully the film spends most its time bright and colorful, which is unexpected in a horror film. Even with those imperfections the ‘The New Daughter' looks sharp, unprocessed and was quite visually appealing.

Its Lossless PCM track was not the most elegant mix I have heard but it sure compliment's the film and was really fun to listen to. I usually don't enjoy over used surround effects but in this case it really did add to the film. Creaking around the house spooked me out--sounding like they were in my house; the crickets and bugs of rural South Carolina felt like they were all over my room. There was the occasional time I noticed the dialogue seeming a bit low, but nothing was swallowed in the mix. The LFE was big and bold, giving a deep loud punch the few times it was called for. Combining the LFE and active surrounds gave 'The New Daughter' a nice bit of subliminal unease to the calm and eerie first two acts of the film, adding nice dynamics when needed. ‘The New Daughter' is a fun Blu-ray to look and listen to.



Bonus Features:


  • Audio commentary by Director Luis Berdejo

  • (HD) Theatrical trailer

  • The New Daughter Behind-the-scenes

  • Deleted Scenes



Final Thoughts:

‘The New Daughter' is a movie most will not see and most reading this have not heard of. With the current state of horror remakes any original idea is welcome, even if its not the most...original. I enjoyed the menacing slow build and the look director Luis Berdejo delivered. Anchor Bay's transfer didn't seem to tinker with the source, giving us a well above average high definition experience. The included supplements are not the most noteworthy and I think a rental is a smart move before a purchase. I was surprised, enjoying ‘The New Daughter' more than I anticipated. I think it is good choice for a spooky flick on movie night.





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post #2 of 22 Old 05-07-2010, 02:50 PM
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Yeah I agree with Lee that it's downright depressing how far Costner has fallen. He was the biggest star in the world for a time.
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post #3 of 22 Old 05-07-2010, 06:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by septim View Post

Yeah I agree with Lee that it's downright depressing how far Costner has fallen. He was the biggest star in the world for a time.

I still like most everything he has been in...I even have a fondness for the Postman!
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post #4 of 22 Old 05-07-2010, 06:18 PM
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Not a fan of Costner..did like the flick Tin Cup , and Body Guard...chick type flicks I guess...Whats the one where he was a coach on a womans team...it escapes me...but it was ok to , I suppose I'll give it a rent.
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post #5 of 22 Old 05-07-2010, 09:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EAGLEFAN67 View Post

Not a fan of Costner..did like the flick Tin Cup , and Body Guard...chick type flicks I guess...Whats the one where he was a coach on a womans team...it escapes me...but it was ok to , I suppose I'll give it a rent.

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post #6 of 22 Old 05-07-2010, 09:29 PM - Thread Starter
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That was Tom Hanks.
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post #7 of 22 Old 05-08-2010, 02:15 AM
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So here I am in labor and delivery waiting for my daughter to come. My wife is sleeping so I decide to check my favorite forum (self admitted addict) and what should pop up but this movie. I am not sure how the wife would like it, so we might have to wait till after post-partum is over to watch it.

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post #8 of 22 Old 05-08-2010, 08:25 AM
 
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Pertsonally, I liked DRAGONFLY, MR BROOKS, WYATT EARP, POSTMAN, and more recently SWING VOTE...so I'll definitely check this one out.
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post #9 of 22 Old 05-08-2010, 10:56 AM
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Greetings,

If you like Kevin Costner you'll more than likely appreciate this one. It isn't a terribly strong film but it will keep you wondering. I personally didn't care for the ending.


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post #10 of 22 Old 05-10-2010, 11:07 AM
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I've always like Costner, even with his hit and miss record, which is kind of like the male version of Sandra Bullock. Will definitely give this one a shot.

Currently testing 3D with Sammy DLP, shutter glasses, and HTPC
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post #11 of 22 Old 05-11-2010, 08:55 AM
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I've always like Costner, even with his hit and miss record, which is kind of like the male version of Sandra Bullock. Will definitely give this one a shot.

Same here. Although no one mentioned it, I really feel that Costner's Open Range was a great western. I sure would love to see it come to Blu-ray.
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post #12 of 22 Old 05-11-2010, 09:39 AM
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Same here. Although no one mentioned it, I really feel that Costner's Open Range was a great western. I sure would love to see it come to Blu-ray.

Greetings,

You and me both George!


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post #13 of 22 Old 05-22-2010, 09:59 PM
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I agree with Ralph that the ending was not fullfilling after the spooky buildup. It's a really gripping movie, although I wish the "evil" was not shown in such detail. It won't make you lose any sleep. Technically, the movie varied, looking overly constrasty in parts. Nice photography, though. Accurate and well written review, Lee.

The acting was nice. Ivana Baquero is a great presence on screen and proves her impact in "Pan's Labyrinth" was no fluke. Kevin Costner has been at his best in his maturity, regardless of the boxoffice. I love "Open Range" a great deal, like others in this thread, and it belongs on Blu-Ray. "Daughter" is an offbeat challenge that plays neat tricks with your head. Try it. It's an evening well spent.
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post #14 of 22 Old 05-30-2010, 08:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

Greetings,

If you like Kevin Costner you'll more than likely appreciate this one. It isn't a terribly strong film but it will keep you wondering. I personally didn't care for the ending.


Regards,

Costner has never been an actor with great depth or range IMO. He does have a specific persona. Some like it, some don't. I personally have enjoyed most of his work.

It's so hard to be completely original in a horror film. So many elements have been done before to some variation. For me, this one mostly worked. Yes, it telegraphed pretty blatantly some of what was to come. For instance when he buried the shotgun. Wrapping it up nicely first. You knew he would be digging it up again. But no matter, it held my attention.

The ending. Well, I kinda liked it. Was it all warm and fuzzy, no way.

Too many stories/films just feel they have to tie everything up nice and tidy at the end. Many times contradictory to what took place before it, often betraying the intelligence of characters. The movie "Collateral" is a good example. Tom Cruise was a clever and experienced hit man. Yet in the end, he gets rattled and behaves stupidly, to his own demise. I would have preferred it if Cruise just disappeared. Jamie Fox finds a note from Cruise saying something like, "Enjoyed the ride, catch you again sometime". I just get tired of nice and tidy endings. Life very often just isn't like that.
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post #15 of 22 Old 06-04-2010, 01:23 PM
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Lee - Thanks for the review.
I was pleasantly surprised with this one and think it's well worth watching. I have a teenage son - and this one being rated PG-13 is a nice fit for us to watch. Not too many films in the horror category which aren't rated R.
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post #16 of 22 Old 06-04-2010, 03:33 PM - Thread Starter
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Lee - Thanks for the review.
I was pleasantly surprised with this one and think it's well worth watching. I have a teenage son - and this one being rated PG-13 is a nice fit for us to watch. Not too many films in the horror category which aren't rated R.

No problem. Glad you enjoyed the flick!
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post #17 of 22 Old 06-13-2010, 01:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

Greetings,

If you like Kevin Costner you'll more than likely appreciate this one. It isn't a terribly strong film but it will keep you wondering. I personally didn't care for the ending.


Regards,

It was entertaining and the suspense builds nicely I suspect, though, that the ending probably had a lot to do with its direct-to-video status that and the fact that it's a slow languid film. The first two-thirds don't exactly fit well with the last third where it becomes more of a standard horror movie with creatures on the lose.

I liked the first two thirds which reminded me of "Picnic on Hanging Rock". of course we DO see one of the creatures in the first fifteen minutes of the film on the roof but it's brief. I think when they showed the creatures at the conclusion it was too much and it reminded me very much of "Signs". The first two thirds of "Signs" worked quite well but the last third was, well, underwhelming.
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post #18 of 22 Old 06-15-2010, 06:47 AM
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The great thing about Signs is that the whole alien invasion was merely a subplot to a much deeper story. Unfortunately, with New Daughter, the creatures are presented as the meat of the story, pushing the more important familial aspects, rashly to the side. And as the creatures are still mostly a mystery in the end, the plot feels unrealized and undeveloped.

But, it was the the final few seconds that most cheapened the film for us,
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
making Costner's sacrifice in vain.
This is one of those rare times that I wished the BD was as sophisticated as the technology and allowed the viewer editorial control. As the very end was less about telling a good story than about commercialism. I could forgive the rest of the stories faults, but the shallow ending virtually ruined it for repeat watching.

It was good to see the color-timing issues that have plagued so many Anchor Bay BDs was not a problem with this one ,though. Whites were a little blown-out, but that's just typical, bright daylight photography for you.

The volume was recorded a little lower than most of the films I've watched lately. But that's easy to adjust. Cranking it about 5-6 dbs, the sound was suitably intense and carried the weight of the horror - even made me jump a time or two. I raised my PJ up to the ceiling about a year ago. It's still suspended about 1 foot to reduce low frequency vibrations, but with bass heavy films like this, one foot isn't enough.

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post #19 of 22 Old 06-15-2010, 08:20 AM - Thread Starter
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I liked the ending. It was not afraid to be different.
The film was a scary story and was not aimed to be and did not need to be deeper...that was not what it was about.
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post #20 of 22 Old 06-15-2010, 11:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lee Weber View Post

I liked the ending. It was not afraid to be different.
The film was a scary story and was not aimed to be and did not need to be deeper...that was not what it was about.

I'm a pretty forgiving moviegoer. But that doesn't make me blind. I don't think I'm just being more demanding than you by thinking this film just barely skimmed the surface of what any fully developed story should be.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
However, I was mostly criticizing the very last few seconds when the thing popped up behind the boy.
Everything else was forgivable. But, after everything that happened, that was just cheap, and from a writers standpoint - extremely lazy. It was hardly daring or innovative. It was trite and cliche even for the horror genre.

I'm not saying I didn't reasonably enjoy the movie. It had a few selling points that make me want to add it to my collection. And, unlike others in this thread, I still happen to like most of Costner's work. But, next time, I'll try to remember to cut this one off at the very end, should I decide to keep it.

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post #21 of 22 Old 06-15-2010, 05:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad Varnadore View Post

I'm a pretty forgiving moviegoer. But that doesn't make me blind. I don't think I'm just being more demanding than you by thinking this film just barely skimmed the surface of what any fully developed story should be.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
However, I was mostly criticizing the very last few seconds when the thing popped up behind the boy.
Everything else was forgivable. But, after everything that happened, that was just cheap, and from a writers standpoint - extremely lazy. It was hardly daring or innovative. It was trite and cliche even for the horror genre.

I'm not saying I didn't reasonably enjoy the movie. It had a few selling points that make me want to add it to my collection. And, unlike others in this thread, I still happen to like most of Costner's work. But, next time, I'll try to remember to cut this one off at the very end, should I decide to keep it.

I liked the It seemed to realllllllly rub you the wrong way.
I think you were just looking for a different movie out of it. I was looking for a fun spooky one that wasn't a remake! I was happy with it. They all cant be masterpieces to be enjoyable.

I edited your post to include a spoiler tag.
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post #22 of 22 Old 06-16-2010, 11:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lee Weber View Post

I liked the iIt seemed to realllllllly rub you the wrong way.
I think you were just looking for a different movie out of it. I was looking for a fun spooky one that wasnt a remake! I was happy with it. They all cant be masterpieces to be enjoyable.

I edited your post to include a spoiler tag.

I can respect your enthusiasm - never did get movie critics who don't seem to actually like movies.

SPOILER WARNING:

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
It wasn't that I didn't care for the downbeat ending; after the death of the teacher, Costner, and his daughter, the tone would have still been very sad, even without those final few seconds. I just thought they could have tried a little harder to come up with something less predictable.

Maybe you're right that I expected something a little more meaningful, because of the stories setup. I kept going back to when Costner told the teacher that he knew that their move, was the most important thing he had ever done. Then he dies in an attempt to destroy the creatures. I almost expected his daughter to be a casualty from the beginning, and understood him being one as well. But the implication that the boy was also doomed after their sacrifice, was too much of a "good" thing.

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