The Review at a Glance: ( max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Studio and Year: 2009 - The Weinstein Company
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 118 minutes
Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD MA 5.1
Subtitles: English, English SDH
Starring: Daniel Day Lewis, Marion Cotillard, Penélope Cruz, Judi Dench, Fergie, Kate Hudson, Nichole Kidman, Sophia Loren
Directed by: Rob Marshall
Music by: Andrea Guerra
Written by: Michael Tolkin & Anthony Minghella (screenplay), Arthur Kopit & Maury Yeston (Broadway musical "Nine"), Mario Fratti (Broadway musical "Nine" Italian original)
Region Code: A
Blu-ray Disc release Date: May 4, 2010
"This Holiday Season, Be Italian."
A vibrant and provocative musical filled with love, lust, passion and glamour. A world famous film director reaches a creative and personal crisis of epic proportion, while balancing numerous women in his life.
Guido Contini (Daniel Day Lewis) is a famous film-maker having a late mid-life crisis. His creative juices are stagnant, he has a week to finish a script to his new film that every one (cast, crew and producers) thinks is complete. He decides to skip town and get a suite in a spa resort in hopes of some inspiration. While there he confronts his writers block, demons of a strict catholic up-bringing, and his addiction to woman. When the woman in question are Marion Cotillard as his wife, Penélope Cruz as his mistress, Nicole Kidman as his muse, Kate Hudson as a new temptation, Judi Dench as his living mother figure, Fergie as a prostitute that was his first sexual experiences, and the spirit of his Mother played by none other than Sophia Loren.... I think its a justified addiction
'Nine' is based on the 1982 Broadway musical which was based on the brilliant Federico Fellini's semi-autobiographical film 8½. I never saw the musical but have viewed 8½ quite a few times. Get it...8½...9?? These two films are not in the same league! I looked at 'Nine' objectively as a musical interpretation of that 1963 film and felt it was passable but most likely better on the stage then on film. Where this failed for me was the musical numbers never stuck in my head. That coupled with a bit of a pacing issue made it a boring watch for me. I anticipated more from director 'Rob Marshall', who's film version of 'Chicago' was quite enjoyable. Thankfully the always brilliant Daniel Day Lewis kept me watching as he could make just about any film bearable; I was impressed with his singing on the two numbers he did as well. Looking at the eye candy that is this cast also made 'Nine' more bearable then it would have otherwise been. My favorite moments of the film were whenever Guido and his friend and head of wardrobe Lilli, played by the magnificent Judi Dench, had conversations. Their combined acting prowess was stunning to watch. Too bad the film itself wasn't even half as captivating as their chemistry.
Rated PG-13 for sexual content and smoking.
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:
Nine comes to Blu-ray Disc from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 27.5 mbps and lossless DTS HD Master Audio 5.1 sound that has an average bitrate of 4.4 mbps.
I am going to start out with the audio on Nine because I was really blown away by its outstanding DTS HD Master Audio track. While it was not the best looking video I have seen and the movie itself was just...well...blah, the sound kept me going. One number in particular, 'Be Italian' sung by Fergie was a real stand-out. The clarity of her voice and the mix of the music behind her was stunning. The Drums sounded almost three dimensional in my room and the low end had that perfect thump to it. What was really, for lack of a better term, 'ear candy' was when Fergie was throwing and playing with sand. You could feel the grains rubbing together and when she whipped it across the stage it flew across my room. The surrounds are used with taste, and add depth more than effect. I am giving this a perfect score as I don't think it could sound any better. No it’s not an action blockbuster with planes and gunfire shooting around the room and no, it doesn't have huge LFE room shaking explosions. It does have an amazingly clear, crisp and tonally balanced three dimensional sound-stage that should be a pleasure in any correctly set-up system.
The AVC encoded video quality is a bit less stunning. Sony usually really hits this out of the park so maybe this is a true representation of the source. My main issue was the image was inconsistent, looking sharp at times then flat at others. That coupled with a slightly drab color pallet made for an underwhelming video presentation. The black levels were nice and inky and shadow details were intact, and the flesh-tones were natural. I just expected more pizzazz from a modern musical with lavish stage numbers. I did enjoy the flashbacks that went to black and white. A bit cliché, yes, but its grain really added a nice vintage texture to the image and these scenes were the most visually rewarding.
** CIH users should make note that the subtitles appear WITHIN the picture area.
- Audio Commentary with Director Rob Marshall and Producer John Deluca
- (HD) The Incomparable Daniel Day-Lewis
- (HD) The Women of Nine
- (HD) Director Rob Marshall
- (HD) Behind the Look of Nine
- (HD) The Dancers of Nine
- (HD) The Choreography of Be Italian
- (HD) The Making of Cinema Italiano
- (HD) The Choreography of Cinema Italiano
- (HD) Sophia Loren Remembers Cinecitta Studios
- (HD) Screen Actors Guild Q&A
- (HD) Three Music Videos
- (HD) Eleven Trailers
- BD-Live Enabled
'Nine' is an interesting Blu-ray. The sound quality will make it welcome in my collection and I will use it as a go-to for an audio demo, using the 'Be Italian' number. I could never watch the entire film again, but I am glad I got to experience it. For anyone who did enjoy the film theatrically its an easy purchase, especially considering the hefty amount of quality extras. For those who have yet to see 'Nine', I recommend against a blind-buy and suggest a rental first.
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Reference Review System:
JVC DLA-RS35 1080p High Definition Front Projector (Calibrated by Jeff Meier)
Custom 1.3 Gain 128" 2.37:1 CinemaScope Screen
Pioneer SC27 Receiver (Calibrated by Jeff Meier)
Pioneer Elite BDP-23FD Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Triangle Zerius Speakers (7.1)
SVS PC13-Ultra Subwoofer