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Smart People

Blu Ray

  • Score
    from 2 reviewers
    Review Date:
  • Smart People intrigues with subtle, great performances and witty humour in a tale of upper-class dysfunction.

    Smart People Blu-ray Front Cover

    Disc Release Date:

  • Video
  • Disney's hallmark transfer shines in clarity and detail preservation, though it unflatteringly highlights Sarah Jessica Parker's makeup and aging on high definition screens.

  • Audio
  • Smart People's Blu-ray mix offers decent quality with clear, lossless audio enhancing dialogue and subtle sounds, alongside rear speakers that subtly boost ambient sounds like restaurant chatter and classroom rustling.

  • Extra
  • The 'Smart People's director and writer offer insightful, yet sometimes tangential commentary on the film, blending technical details with charm, despite the disc's basic offerings.

  • Movie
  • Amidst Lawrence's self-absorbed awkwardness, a budding yet uneasy courtship unfolds, while an appreciative audience delves beyond genre norms to grasp the filmmakers' core intentions.

    Video: 72

    The video presentation of "Smart People" on Blu Ray is a testament to the quality we've come to expect from Disney and Buena Vista releases. The film's transfer is sharp and erudite, displaying a delightful clarity that enhances the viewing experience. This clarity brings out an abundance of film grain and preserves intricate details which are essential for appreciating the cinematography and direction. The balance struck between cleaning up the video and maintaining its original texture is commendable, providing a visual fidelity that respects the source material while delivering a polished high-definition experience.

    However, this high level of resolution does not come without its drawbacks, especially for the cast. Sarah Jessica Parker's appearance in particular highlights some of the challenges posed by HD. The unforgiving clarity brings to light the limitations of on-screen makeup, revealing imperfections and aging signs more prominently than lower resolutions would. While this might not be flattering for the actors involved, it underscores the authenticity and rawness that HD can impart on film, creating a more immersive and genuine viewing experience.

    Consequently, "Smart People" benefits immensely from its Blu Ray presentation, which elevates the film through outstanding video quality. The meticulous preservation of film grain and detail reinforces the cinematic appeal, albeit at the expense of exposing the natural aging process of its stars. Nonetheless, this candid revelation adds a layer of realism to the characters, allowing viewers to engage with the film on a more authentic level. This mix of technical prowess and visual honesty sets a high standard for home video releases, showcasing both the beauty and brutality of high definition.

    Audio: 59

    The audio experience of "Smart People" on Blu-ray is underlined by its lossless audio track, which serves as a noteworthy enhancement over standard audio offerings. This clarity elevates the film's dialogue and overall sound design, albeit the improvements are nuanced. The mix is competently crafted, aligning well with the film's demands, which, while not overly complex or dynamic, benefit from the subtle enhancements the lossless mix provides. The audio quality brings a level of depth and crispness that is particularly evident in quieter, dialogue-driven scenes, showcasing a fidelity that fans of the film will appreciate.

    In terms of spatial audio effects, the Blu-ray utilizes the rear speakers primarily for ambient sounds, creating a more immersive environment. The utilization here is relatively modest, with the rear channels primarily enhancing scenes with background noises like the murmurs of a restaurant or the shuffle of books in an academic setting. These ambient sounds, though subdued, contribute to the authenticity and atmosphere of the film, providing a sense of place without overwhelming the central dialogue and interactions.

    Overall, while the audio presentation on "Smart People" Blu-ray may not be groundbreaking in terms of surround sound innovation, it executes its task with competence. The focus on clarity and dialogue ensures that the essence of the film is conveyed uncompromised, with the rear channels subtly enriching the soundscape rather than vying for attention. This balance makes for a satisfactory auditory experience that complements the narrative and enhances the viewing experience for audiophiles and casual viewers alike.

    Extra: 52

    The extra presentation on the "Smart People" Blu-ray disc offers a concise but comprehensive dive into the behind-the-scenes world of the film. In the audio commentary, the director and writer share their thoughts on a wide range of topics, from the intricate details of the story's events to more general observations about the characters and their development. This feature stands out as both informative for cinephiles who appreciate the nuances of film creation and engaging for casual viewers interested in the filmmakers' perspectives. Though the extras might seem basic at first glance, they are executed in such a way that adds extensive value and charm to the overall Blu-ray experience, ensuring that fans of the film gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of the work that went into its making.

    Extras included in this disc:

    • Audio Commentary with Director and Writer: A comprehensive discussion covering the film's story, character development, and behind-the-scenes insights.

    Movie: 64

    Smart People" unfurls within the confines of Lawrence's emotionally stunted universe, a character whose intellectual prowess masks an impoverished emotional life. The initiation of his romance is marred by this emotional ineptitude, creating a dynamic painfully awkward yet undeniably authentic. This narrative choice plunges viewers into the heart of Lawrence’s struggle, embodying a stark departure from romantic norms, ingeniously spotlighting the protagonist's battle with personal connection amidst his intellectual entanglements.

    The film's approach transcends typical genre constraints, appealing to an audience yearning for a deeper, more nuanced cinematic experience. Its minimalistic tendencies are not shortcomings but rather deliberate stylistic choices that accentuate the film’s core themes. The filmmakers' intentions shine through this understated narrative framework, leveraging the genre’s conventions to explore complex emotional landscapes and character nuances. This strategic minimalism enhances the storytelling, inviting viewers to look beyond surface-level interpretations and engage with the film’s underlying messages.

    Technical aspects of the movie, such as its direction and screenplay, complement its thematic endeavors. The cinematography and visual aesthetics serve not merely as backdrop but as integral components of the storytelling, further immersing the audience in Lawrence's journey. Through these elements, "Smart People" succeeds in delivering a profound commentary on intellectualism's collision with the human emotional spectrum. The movie challenges viewers to confront their perceptions of intelligence, connection, and self-worth, making it a standout piece for those willing to delve into its enriched cinematic texture.

    Total: 62

    Smart People," presented on Blu-ray, elegantly encapsulates the essence of upper-class dysfunction through its astute narrative and commendable performances. The film, which explores well-trodden territory, distinguishes itself with a unique blend of witty humor and the subtle yet profound portrayals by its cast. Mark Poirier's story comes to life thanks to the nuanced performances, crafting a cinematic experience that is both engaging and reflective.

    The technical presentation of the Blu-ray accentuates the film's quiet strength, with audio and visual quality that complements the narrative's subtlety. The crispness of the image and the clarity of the sound allow viewers to immerse themselves fully in the story's intricate dynamics and character interactions. This technical prowess ensures that the film's understated humor and emotional undercurrents are conveyed with precision, adding depth to the viewer's experience.

    In conclusion, "Smart People" on Blu-ray is a commendable release that offers an introspective look into complex relationships and personal growth, supported by stellar performances and a well-crafted script. The technical quality of the release enhances the storytelling, making it a worthwhile addition to any film enthusiast's collection. This Blu-ray not only provides an excellent viewing experience but also invites introspection and appreciation for its subtle craft and nuanced execution.