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  Directed by
    None Listed
  Starring
  Specs
  • Widescreen 1.78:1
  • 16:9 Enhanced
  • Dual Layer (RSDL 62:13)
  Languages
  • English: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • French: Dolby Digital Surround
  • Spanish: Dolby Digital Surround
  • German: Dolby Digital Surround
  • Italian: Dolby Digital Surround
  Subtitles
    English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Hebrew, Czech, Greek, Polish, Hungarian, Dutch, Arabic, Portuguese, English - Hearing Impaired, Turkish, Icelandic, Croatian, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, Romanian, Bulgarian, Slovenian
  Extras
  • Theatrical trailer

Jennifer 8

Paramount/Paramount . R4 . COLOR . 120 mins . M . PAL

  Feature
Contract

John Berlin has moved to Eureka to rebuild his life after the violent crime of Los Angeles wore him down and he descended into a life of anger and alcohol that cost him his marriage and almost ruined his career. He has come to Eureka as a man on his way back. He no longer drinks, is trying to give up smoking and has recently finished a course in investigative techniques. The attractions of Eureka are many, including a quiet life and most importantly the company of his former boss and friend, Freddy Ross.

However, before he has even officially started work he investigates the apparent suicide of a vagrant at the local rubbish dump. While looking for the suicide weapon a women's severed hand is found, along with a dead dog and a blood stained bra. John doesn't like the look of the evidence and begins to ask questions of his new colleagues. He soon learns of an unsolved case with some similarities to his own, the so called Jennifer case. The Jennifer case was investigated for many months, but was eventually dropped due to a lack of evidence.

Armed with new investigative techniques, John discovers that the hand of the latest victim is from a blind woman and this in turn leads him to a missing girl and a possible witness in a blind teacher named Helena. The more he investigates, the more John is certain that he is looking for a serial killer, a view not shared by his colleagues. Despite instructions not to pursue the case further, John continues to probe for answers which creates friction with his superiors and co-workers and ultimately leads to the murder of a friend and a pile of trouble for John.

I'll leave the plot summary here as I don't want to spoil the story for you!

  Video
Contract

This is a good 16x9 enhanced video transfer, but one that must be viewed in a dark environment to ensure that you are to see all that the director intended.

This is a dark film and I suspect that the light levels required during filming have pushed both the film stock used and the camera operators (focus pullers) to the max, resulting in a slightly soft image. There are also some scenes that have a gritty, somewhat grainy look to them, again the result of the light levels needed for the filming of these scenes. These characteristics are not the result of the MPEG encoding process, rather they are inherent in the source material. Having said all of the above I think that the detail levels revealed by this transfer are good and in keeping with the artistic intentions of the director and cinematographer.

The colour palette used in this film is generally subdued, no doubt the result of the winter, country setting and the generally flat light that occurs at this time of year.

The skin tones are a touch on the pink side which I put down to a slight 'warming' of the image to combat the dull light of winter.

The only MPEG related artefacts I saw were minor examples of aliasing and film artefacts were limited to frequent, but easily ignored, dust flecks and small fibres.

This is an RSDL disc with the layer change occurring at 62:13. The change is noticeable even though it is placed during a scene change.

  Audio
Contract

This DVD features a high quality English Dolby Digital 5.1 audio transfer in which the score and sound effects are nicely intertwined. Together they create the right atmosphere for a tense thriller such as this.

The front three channels are the driving force of the film providing most of the directional sounds for both the effects and the score. The surrounds are well used for ambient sounds such as rain and wind noise as well as supporting the score which results in an enveloping soundscape that is so important for a film of this genre.

The subwoofer is used throughout the film and is so well integrated into the overall soundscape that it never distracts you from the on screen action.

One final comment on the audio transfer, you will need to be at your reference listening level or a couple of clicks higher to really get the full effect of this soundtrack.

  Extras
Contract

Extras? Unfortunately not, unless you count the Theatrical Trailer. Do we still think of this as an extra? Nah!

  Overall  
Contract

Writer and director Bruce Robinson has crafted a very enjoyable thriller that has just the right number of clues and amount of misinformation to really get you in. His direction is beautifully supported by his talented cast and the photography of academy awarding winning cinematographer Conrad Hall (Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, American Beauty) is rightfully dark and moody.


  • LINK: http://www.dvd.net.au/review.cgi?review_id=1356
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      And I quote...
    "A well written thriller presented on a solid quality DVD. A movie fans of this genre will enjoy..."
    - Michael Chappell
      Review Equipment
    • DVD Player:
          Loewe Xenix 5006DD
    • DVD Rom:
          Pioneer 105(s)
    • MPEG Card:
          RealMagic Hollywood Plus
    • TV:
          Grundig MW82-50/8 IDTV 16:9
    • Receiver:
          Denon AVR-2801
    • Speakers:
          Tannoy Mercury M4
    • Centre Speaker:
          Tannoy Mercury MC
    • Surrounds:
          Tannoy Mercury M1
    • Subwoofer:
          Aaron SUB-120
    • Audio Cables:
          Monster Lightspeed 100
    • Video Cables:
          ConCord SCART
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