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-   -   The Iron Lady (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review (http://www.avsforum.com/forum/187-official-avs-blu-ray-disc-reviews/1404408-iron-lady-blu-ray-official-avsforum-review.html)

Lee Weber 04-08-2012 11:49 AM

attachment.php?attachmentid=242454&d=1333395171
The Review at a Glance: ( max score: 5 )

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

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

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

90






Studio and Year: The Weinstein Company - 2011
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 105 minutes
Genre: Biography, Drama

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


Audio Format(s): English DTS HD-MA 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
Starring: Meryl Streep, Jim Broadbent, Richard E. Grant, Olivia Colman
Directed by: Phyllida Lloyd
Music by: Thomas Newman
Written by: Abi Morgan
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: April 10, 2012







"Never Compromise."



Film Synopsis:

An elderly Margaret Thatcher talks to the imagined presence of her recently deceased husband as she struggles to come to terms with his death while scenes from her past life, from girlhood to British prime minister, intervene.




My Take:

Not that I was anticipating an exciting film, especially considering the subject matter, but boy was The Iron Lady not only boring, but a wimpy film. It is bipartisan on a very conservative subject, having no cajones when it came to making a stand on how it would portray Margaret Thatcher (Meryl Streep), the former United Kingdom Prime Minister. This is a film on the life of the most powerful woman in world politics in the 20th century, yet the film on her life is shown in flashback memories from a senile old woman talking to a vision of her deceased husband. I felt that a straight time-line would have been much more effective, as starting her off weak seemed to backfire for me.

Two-time Academy Award winner Meryl Streep (SOPHIE’S CHOICE, KRAMER VS. KRAMER) is impeccable as always as the former Prime Minister. She won a Golden Globe and won best actress in the 84th Academy Awards. The most interesting part of watching The Iron Lady was the dichotomy of how the acting, the set and costume design were so wonderful yet the films narrative, flow and character development fell so incredibly flat. It is similar in structure and short-comings to Clint Eastwood's J. Edgar, which I thought to be the better film. At the end, I didn't feel like I had a deeper understanding of Margret Thatcher, and that is quite the strike for a "Bio-Pic".



Parental Guide:

Rated PG-13 for some violent images and brief nudity.





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: 92



  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699


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

Video: 88



  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

The Iron Lady comes Blu-ray Disc from Anchor Bay Entertainment & Starz featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 22 mbps and DTS-HD Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 3.3 mbps

The Iron Lady's video presentation had zero flaws. That being said, it just didn't completely dazzle with the depth that the best transfers have. Yes the blacks were striking, fine details stood out in facial features and fabrics and colors were strong though favoring the colder side of things. There was not any artifacting to be seen and you wont find any complaints, but you wont be completely wowed either. The DTS-HD Master Audio is the definition of a surprise. This is a film I expected to say the requisite "it did all that was asked to do" and "dialogue was spot on for this talkie"...but it went way above and beyond the call. The surround channels were always lit up, whether it be the natural echo in a big reverberant room to the chirps of people watching Miss Thatcher speak, the sound stage was 360 degrees of sonic perfection. Low end even had a few chances to strut it's stuff, and yes, the dialogue was spot-on.





Bonus Features:


  • Making The Iron Lady

  • 5 Bonus Featurettes

  • DVD Copy

  • Digital Copy




Final Thoughts:

When my son asked what I was watching and I answered The Iron Lady, his eyes lit up; he didn't know there was a girl Iron Man! He was disappointed and I sent him up and my wife put him to bed. I should have let him stay with me, as it was putting me to sleep, he would have been out in 5 minutes. We know if it has Meryl Streep we will be getting an amazing performance, too bad it was wasted on a dull film. Meryl really did become Margret, but the film made us not care. A/V-wise Anchor Bay serves up another winner, however I suggest steering clear or at best, a rental.





attachment.php?attachmentid=157497&d=1257542613







Lee Weber
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews




Reference Review System:



JVC DLA-RS45 3D 1080p 3D High Definition Front Projector
Screen Innovations Solar HD 1.3 120" 2.40:1 CinemaScope Screen
Denon AVR 4311 Pre/Pro
Sunfire Theater Grand 7201 Amplifier
Sony PS3 Slim Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
MK Sound S-150MKII LCR
MK Sound S-150T Tripole Surrounds
MK Sound MX-350MKII Subwoofer

JamE55 04-09-2012 07:39 AM

So the moral of this review is if you can't sleep or have insomia this will put you to sleep right away or maybe in a few mins. lol

Seihaku 04-09-2012 08:02 AM

Opted to look this up to see how she fared at the Oscars: She wound up winning the Academy Award/Oscar for best actress for this, her 3rd win out of 17 nominations (last win was in '83).

But yeah pretty much a terrible movie with excellent production values.

Djoel 04-09-2012 12:38 PM

Wow, I wasn't aware this was so bad no press what so ever, sorry to hear that, I was interested on seeing this one.

What a shame.


Djoel

WestCoastD 04-09-2012 02:12 PM

interesting. I kind of wanted to watch this movie for myself, intriguing story. But now I'm a little apprehensive?

I did'nt realize this was only her 3rd actual Oscar win since 1983? Seems like she's won since then?

My take, from the press, is that her role was performed exceptionallly well on top of an overall story that was not done so well

easycruise 04-10-2012 06:23 AM

Thatcher's most famous line..."Eventually, socialists run out of other people's money to spend." Seeing that happen everywhere now. Thatcher was quite the smart visionary.

spiritfox 04-10-2012 09:17 AM

Wow--thanks Lee--pretty much confirms what I feared about this one. Seems like one that I should see but now think I will pass.

Rach 04-11-2012 06:37 AM

I initially was going to buy but I think I'm down to a rental. Can't miss a movie on the Iron Lady.

Franin 04-11-2012 07:12 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rach View Post

I initially was going to buy but I think I'm down to a rental. Can't miss a movie on the Iron Lady.

same will rent this out also.

DJ Matt 04-11-2012 06:57 PM

I was disappointed with The Iron Lady. Meryl Streep put on an excellent performance, but thats all this movie had going for itself. I thought they spent way too much time with her hallucinations. After watching this, I felt like that was the biggest storyline/plot in this film. It took a lot away for what this film could have been.

rdgrimes 04-11-2012 07:56 PM

I'll be the minority of one and state that this is a fine film. A simple character study and love story, nicely and carefully done. I'll admit that I will gladly sit and watch Streep read the phone book for 2 hours, but here she has once again shown her formidable talent. Great acting from all parties for that matter.

I'll admit that the character study is a lost genre these days and most viewers are unfamiliar and probably unwilling to accept it. Here we learn as much about Thatcher the woman as we do about Thatcher the politician, and both are interesting.

AQ is a nice surprise, the surround is excellent when called for as well.

Ralph Potts 04-12-2012 04:08 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by rdgrimes View Post

I'll be the minority of one and state that this is a fine film. A simple character study and love story, nicely and carefully done. I'll admit that I will gladly sit and watch Streep read the phone book for 2 hours, but here she has once again shown her formidable talent. Great acting from all parties for that matter.

I'll admit that the character study is a lost genre these days and most viewers are unfamiliar and probably unwilling to accept it. Here we learn as much about Thatcher the woman as we do about Thatcher the politician, and both are interesting.

AQ is a nice surprise, the surround is excellent when called for as well.

Greetings,

You have piqued my interest. I will give this a viewing when I get the chance.

Regards,

Injected Sin 04-12-2012 04:24 PM

As a whole the movie about MT was interesting with Streeps performance very compelling.

I didn't enjoy the mind farts.

djkest 04-13-2012 10:01 AM

I heard some conservative critics say that the presentation of Margaret Thatcher was slanted an untruthful. It would be like asking Rush Limbaugh to do a biopic on Bill Clinton. I'm not familiar with Thatcher's record and actions though so I can't personaly comment on that aspect.

Lee Weber 04-16-2012 07:03 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by rdgrimes View Post

I'll be the minority of one and state that this is a fine film. A simple character study and love story, nicely and carefully done. I'll admit that I will gladly sit and watch Streep read the phone book for 2 hours, but here she has once again shown her formidable talent. Great acting from all parties for that matter.

I'll admit that the character study is a lost genre these days and most viewers are unfamiliar and probably unwilling to accept it. Here we learn as much about Thatcher the woman as we do about Thatcher the politician, and both are interesting.

AQ is a nice surprise, the surround is excellent when called for as well.

I love a good character study but found this to have transparent characters and lacking the "meat" needed to be successful.

Quote:
Originally Posted by djkest View Post

I heard some conservative critics say that the presentation of Margaret Thatcher was slanted an untruthful. It would be like asking Rush Limbaugh to do a biopic on Bill Clinton. I'm not familiar with Thatcher's record and actions though so I can't personaly comment on that aspect.

I would say Liberals would think it wasn't slanted enough...go figure.

javry 04-17-2012 01:52 AM

Well - generally, we Americans always presume that any movie about a British character is by definition a good movie - so it's good to see some serious debate going on rather than the usual so on and so on about how great it was and how impeccably everyone was dressed. In reading between the lines - I'm guessing that while worth a look, "The Kings Speech" this movie ain't. But it still may be worth a Saturday night with a bag of chips and a glass of something white and dry.

thehun 04-17-2012 09:38 PM

I have to agree that this movie had failed on it's primary mission of being a biopic, and to learn anything new about her, and frankly I knew very little.
Character study? Of what, a woman suffering from Alzheimer's? Her entire life shown via flashbacks that some times lacked any chronological linearity. They were also hardly amounted to more then some soundbites newspaper headlines. It seemed that the filmmakers had no access to real insight to this woman's life, so they just heavily relied on available public info, and they made up all the conversations with the dead husband. Streep's performance was very good indeed, but not spotless, she allowed her own face to be shown on some scenes, meaning she was out of character, but that the least of the problem this film had. Still it wasn't horrendous, but sure missed an opportunity make this a good film. Certainly the talent was there. IMO.

capnvid 04-18-2012 09:06 PM

They turned the story of one of the most formidable women of the 20th century into a bit of a soap opera. Twice as much time on dementia as on the spectacular Thatcher reforms (whether you agree with them or not.) Meryl Streep is as good as her Oscar suggests and I'll keep the Blu-Ray for her uncanny performance. Watch it because you are not going to see acting like hers in this film very often.

Doug Blackburn 06-26-2012 07:47 PM

Anybody having trouble playing this disc? Our rental copy won't play in an old Sony disc player, a new Sony disc player (after firmware update), or an Oppo BDP-93.

The error they display doesn't make it clear whether the disc is damaged in some way or if all the players are going to need yet another firmware update in order to play this disc.

rdgrimes 06-26-2012 08:16 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug Blackburn View Post

Anybody having trouble playing this disc? Our rental copy won't play in an old Sony disc player, a new Sony disc player (after firmware update), or an Oppo BDP-93.

The error they display doesn't make it clear whether the disc is damaged in some way or if all the players are going to need yet another firmware update in order to play this disc.

Netflix copy played fine here in the Oppo.

Doug Blackburn 06-27-2012 10:07 AM

OK, thanks, I heard from another Oppo owner that it played fine also... since the disc is failing on 2 Sonys and an Oppo, I'm going to get a replacement copy, I suspect the disc has a problem that's not obvious.

William 06-27-2012 04:20 PM

VUDU has this as their 99¢ rental today.


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