The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Studio and Year: New Line Cinema - 2009
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 109 minutes
Disc Format: BD-25
Encoding: VC-1 (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Audio Format(s): English Dolby TrueHD 5.1, French Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, French
Starring: Abigail Breslin, Cameron Diaz, Jason Patric, Alec Baldwin, Emily Deschanel
Directed by: Nick Cassavetes
Music by: Aaron Zigman
Written by: Based on a Novel by Jodi Picoult, Screenplay by Jeremy Leven and Nick Cassavetes
Region Code: Free
Blu-ray Disc release Date: November 17, 2009
"What keeps a family together?"
Nick Cassavetes, the director of The Notebook, again demonstrates his sure hand with tales of deep human emotion in this inspiring film about a loving family challenged — and united – by a child’s illness. Cameron Diaz, Abigail Breslin, Alec Baldwin and others in an exceptional cast bring sensitivity to the story of an 11-year-old girl, conceived to be a donor for her leukemia-stricken sister, and who finally demands the right to control her own body.
Not being a fan of the (pay attention IMDB) "Make me cry 'til it hurts" genre, I found My Sister's Keeper to be an exception to the rule. There is much more story here than was billed. Between the daughter with leukemia, the other daughter used as a donor, the parents' conflict(s), the court case, a surprising love affair...this movie just doesn't give us a moment to wipe our face or catch our breath. I was impressed how every move the characters made affected the interpersonal dynamics the family has, not only between each other but the outside world. I asked myself many times, "what would I do?" and regardless on whether or not I agreed with the decisions that were made on screen, I completely understood them. The only issue I could find here was feeling a bit used as I began to feel like their goal was to make the audience cry over all else. Director and Screenwriter Nick Cassavetes (The Notebook) was in complete control here, pulling off every move he wanted to make. The cast was perfect, but none more than the 2 girls played by Abigail Breslin (Little Miss Sunshine) and Sofia Vassilieva (Medium). They stole the show and it was impressive that they were able to take their characters as far as they did. Cameron Diaz was convincing as the frantic mother, trying anything and everything to save her dying daughter. Jason Patric was flawless as the comfortably numb father and Alec Baldwin deserves honorable mention for nailing the part of the slimy, yet caring attorney. This movie had control over my emotions and got the response it was aiming for, and for that I can safely say one of the top's on its genre. Give it a shot, I don't think you will be disappointed.
Rated PG-13 for mature thematic content, some disturbing images, sensuality, language and brief teen drinking.
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)
- Low frequency extension:
- Surround Sound presentation:
- Dialogue Reproduction:
- Black level/Shadow detail:
- Color reproduction:
My Sister's Keeper comes to Bluray Disc from Warner Bros. featuring 1080p VC-1 encoded video that has an average bitrate of 19 mbps and lossless Dolby True HD 5.1 sound that has an average bitrate of 2.5 mbps
This is a healthy Hi-def release who's audio and video are quite lulling. The colors and skin-tones are a bit over-saturated but not in a ugly or unnatural way, more in a dreamy, calming way. Shadow detail and black levels both looked very nice on my display. My only criticism is the softness to the image. I suspect that was the filmmakers' intent, but I was not sure. The audio might have received reference marks if it was a different movie, but My Sister's Keeper didn't need to ask much its soundtrack. The dialogue and clarity for a quiet and moody sound-scape was spot-on, and the limited times it had to flex its muscles were dynamic and used to really complement the emotions on screen. I think you would be hard pressed to find any major flaws in this release.
CIH notes: Subtitles and the top menu are not CIH safe.
- (HD) From Picoult to Screen: Documentary
- Deleted Scenes
- Digital Copy
This Warner Bros. Bluray has wonderful audio and video but less than average extra features. I don't think this is a re-watch type of film, mainly because its not fun experience. If you want to be played like a violin and cry on call every 10 minutes, buy 2 copies!! I did appreciate how well crafted the movie was, from writing to directing and really to the phenomenal child actors. If a well executed (even with the main goal of trying to make you cry over and over) human experience is your type of story then this is top tier. I can safely say its worth a watch but I am not too sure about a buy.
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Reference Review System:
JVC DLA-RS20 1080p High Definition Front Projector
Prismasonic HE1500R Anamorphic Lens
Custom 1.3 Gain 128" 2.37:1 CinemaScope Screen
Pioneer SC07 Receiver
Pioneer BDP-320 Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Triangle Zerius Speakers (7.1)
SVS PC13-Ultra Subwoofer