Parent and child journey through the outskirts of society a decade after a pandemic has wiped out half the world’s population. As a father struggles to protect his child, their bond, and the character of humanity, is tested. Check out Ralph Potts’ Blu-ray review of Light of My Life from Paramount Home Media Distribution.
The Review at a Glance:
(max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Studio and Year: Paramount – 2019
MPAA Rating: R
Feature running time: 119 minutes
Disc Format: BD-50
Video Aspect: 1.66:1
Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio
Subtitles: English, English SDH, Spanish
Starring: Casey Affleck, Anna Pniowsky, Tom Bower, Elisabeth Moss
Written & Directed by: Casey Affleck
Music by:Daniel Hart
Region Code: A
Release Date: October 8, 2019
“Parent and child journey through the outskirts of society a decade after a pandemic has wiped out half the world’s population. As a father struggles to protect his child, their bond, and the character of humanity, is tested.” – Paramount Home Media Distribution
A decade after a plague has wiped out nearly all of the world’s female population, a father (Affleck) and daughter live on the outskirts of what’s left of civilization as they once knew it. Disguising his daughter as a boy, the father struggles to protect her from newfound threats as they are forced from their home into dangerous territory. Prepared to defend his daughter at all costs, their bond and the character of humanity is tested.
Written and directed by Casey Affleck Light of My Life is set in an undetermined post-apocalyptic future where a plague wiped out the majority of the female population, leaving those left behind in various states of mind, some of which are deeply and darkly affected by the losses. Children below the age of seventeen are rare and sightings of them draws much interest among the remaining population. Females are sought after, with those whose whereabouts are known being kept in communes under lock and key essentially.
The story is an intimate one, focusing heavily on “Dad” and his daughter “Rag” as they navigate the world in which they inhabit. We learn about some of Dad and Rag’s past through a series of flashback sequences, most of which offer snippets of the Dad and his Wife (Moss). We see how the plague affected their lives and, why she is not with them.
Light of My Life is a character driven film that depicts the love between a father and daughter while telling it from a perspective that relates in part to morality interwoven with the need for survival. Rag and Dad are the primary characters however they encounter some nefarious types, with only a few exceptions, along their journey. With children being seen as special, Rag stands out, despite her father’s attempts to disguise her as a boy, which draws others to them. The heart of the story lies in the journey, both spiritually and emotionally, between Rag and Dad and, the looming inevitability of their plight.
Casey Affleck gives a strong performance that is perfectly matched by the credible and evocative turn by his young co-star Anna Pniowsky. Light of My Life isn’t an originally conceptual or completely fulfilling film. The runtime is slightly overlong and some may find the staggered pacing too slow, especially if expectations are different. I think that sticking with it pays off and results in an emotive and rewarding dramatic film that is worth seeing.
The rating is for some violence.
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 effects:
- Surround Sound presentation:
- Dialog Reproduction:
- DSU/DTS Neural:X Rating * (non-rated element): NA
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
- Black Level/Shadow Detail:
- Color Reproduction:
Light of My Life comes to Blu-ray Disc from Paramount Home Media Distribution featuring 1080p AVC encoded video and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound.
The video has a stylized look that utilizes a de-saturated color scheme and slightly scaled back contrast which gives images a flatter less dynamic appearance. Blacks are strong and detail in dark areas and shadowy backgrounds is excellent. The primary color range is limited to shades of dark blue, gray and black with splashes of crimson red and amber highlights. The visual design isn’t such that it offers glossy, razor sharp quality however resolution is excellent as images are delineated and dimensionally strong. This film’s intentionally dark visuals and vapid color don’t exhibit the eye catching imagery generally associated with new release films coming to Blu-ray but that doesn’t prevent it from looking terrific in high definition.
The lossless audio presentation has no trouble conveying the elements present in the soundtrack. Dialog reproduction is good and exhibits clear intonation with fair room penetration. The mix does a nice job of handling the various directional cues and near field simulation featured in the screenplay. Atmosphere creating sounds mixed to the rear channels create a neatly balanced rear soundfield that seamlessly blends with the front soundstage. This generally consists of spatial ambience however discrete effects are present and appropriate based upon the events transpiring onscreen. Dynamics aren’t really tested, with the exception of one moment which takes place in the final act, you’ll know what I mean. I think this is a solid surround mix that hits the high points quite well.
- Digital Copy
Written and directed by Casey Affleck Light of My Life is an emotive and rewarding dramatic film that tells an intimate story of a father and daughter struggling to balance survival with sustaining their humanity in a world where achieving both seems to be impossible. It comes to Blu-ray from Paramount Home Media Distribution featuring excellent high definition audio/video quality and no bonus material. Light of My Life could prove frustrating to impatient viewers but, for those willing to stay engaged it has something to offer. Give it a rent on Blu-ray and see what you think.
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Reference Review System:
JVC DLA-RS2000 4K Ultra High Definition Front Projector
(Calibrated with Calman 5 & C6-HDR Meter from Spectracal)
Stewart Filmscreen – Studiotek 130 G3 100” 16×9 Screen
Carada Masquerade Electronic Horizontal Masking System
Marantz AV7704 Audio/Video Processor
Emotiva XPA-7 Gen 3 Seven Channel Amplifier
Emotiva XPA-11 Gen 3 Amplifier
Panasonic DP-UB820 Ultra HD Blu-ray Player
System Controller: Apple iPad/iRule Pro HD Universal Remote Control
Canton “Ergo” and Canton In-Ceiling Series Speakers
SVS Ultra Surrounds (Gloss Finish in Bipolar Configuration)
Dual SVS PC4000 Cylinder Subwoofers
Panamax M5400-PM Power Conditioner/Surge Protector
Wireworld, Better Cables (Silver Serpent) – Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
AC Infinity Aircom T8 Component Cooling Systems