Annie Hall Blu-ray Review
- Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
- Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
- Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
- Audio Codec: English DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 Mono, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish (Castilian), and Spanish (Latin American) Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono
- Subtitles: English SDH, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Portuguese (Brazilian), Spanish (Castilian), Spanish (Latin American)
- Region: A (B? C?)
- Rating: PG
- Run Time: 93 Mins.
- Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
- Studio: MGM
- Blu-ray Release Date: January 24, 2012
- List Price: $24.99
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(All Blu-rayDefinition.com screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG at 100% quality setting and are meant as a general representation of the content. They do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)
With 1977′s Annie Hall Woody Allen brought together his comedic talents as a stand-up and the slapstick gags developed in previous films with a more serious, intellectual tone for a groundbreaking romantic comedy that serves as an interesting look at the perils of dating in 1970s America. What we now consider hip and edgy comedy, Allen was doing decades ago, with his use of subtitles for comedic effects, split screens, and cynical social commentary that would make Jerry Seinfeld sound like an optimist. His humorous and often telling musings on relationships, religion, drugs and philosophy place this in classic Woody Allen territory. This is Woody Allen firmly at his neurotic New York best.
Alvy Singer (Allen), a successful, but neurotic Jewish comedian in New York City meets the ditzy but appealing cabaret singer Annie Hall (Diane Keaton) and the two begin an unlikely romance. Alvy, twice divorced, may be successful in his career, but at love he is a disaster. His neuroses tends to drive women away. Now, Annie Hall, her own neuroses a major part of her character, cause their relationship to be in a constant state of friction. Eventually, it drives them apart, Annie heading to Los Angeles to chase her dreams of success, where she moves in with Tony Lacey (Paul Simon). Alvy, realizing he loves her, decides to follow her out, despite his disliking of Los Angeles (“Why would I want to move to a place whose only cultural advantage is the ability to make a right turn on red?”). But there isn’t likely to be a reconciliation for these two, destined to be locked in an eternal state of introspection and conflict.
Portions of this transfer look really good – rich colors, even layer of natural grain, good contrast – other parts are a bit underwhelming. There are some instances of flicker, some splotchy video noise, and wavering black levels. Grain is sometimes a bit overwhelming as well. I don’t think that Annie Hall has ever looked absolutely spectacular, however, and this Blu-ray is probably as good as it ever has looked.
There isn’t much to say about this simple, dialogue-driven monaural soundtrack that appears in a DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 encodement. It offers clear dialogue without any clipping and is good enough for the material at hand.
The Definitive Word
A time capsule pulled straight out of the 1970s that has managed to age like a fine bottle of wine, Annie Hall is an intelligent and truthful romantic comedy about misaligned stars, incompatible characters, and the human need to dive head first into the fray anyway. Recommended.
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