Friday, January 8, 2010

According to Greta Blu-ray Review

Disc Size: 27.7 GB
Film Size: 23.2 GB
Film Rating: PG-13
Region: A

Video
According to Greta comes to Blu-ray with a 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 video presentation that is surprisingly strong. Detail and clarity are both very nice and are usually quite impressive. Whether it be a closeup to the imperfections on Hilary Duff’s forehead or the textures and lines of every building, it’s usually very impressive and clear.

Colors on this release are also very beautiful, rich and really add to the film’s high-def look. I was disappointed a little regarding black levels, which are usually fine, but there are a few moments where I thought they could have been a bit inkier and one shot that looked quite ugly.

Grain levels are minimal but present, and the movie just looks very good in high-definition. I do not have the DVD release to compare it to, but there’s no way the DVD could compare to the high-def encode in this case. It’s not among the very best, but it’s certainly a very impressive looking movie regardless. 8/10.

Audio
A 5.1 Dolby TrueHD audio track is included and while it’s not impressive in any aspect, it’s a decent audio track. According To Greta is an extremely front heavy audio experience; we have few effective surround sound moments.

Being the type of film that it is, I was not expecting too much from the audio experience, and what we get here certainly does nothing to surprise my original expectations. I can say that everything about the track is clear. Dialogue is always crisp and easy to understand, the film’s music is light but it sounds quite pretty.

While I’m not sure how much of an improvement this audio track is from that on the DVD, I definitely appreciate Anchor Bay Entertainment for including a lossless track on this release. The audio track is not going to blow anyone away, but I can say I found it clear as can be from beginning to end. 6/10.

Extras

Greta: Behind the Scenes (18:39) (SD)
A good behind-the-scenes look at the film, featuring cast and crew interviews as well.

Deleted & Alternate Scenes (7:16) (SD)
Four additional scenes are included and presented in standard-definition.

Alternate Ending (1:35) (SD)
An alternate ending is included and is presented in standard-definition. The alternate ending is pretty much like the film’s actual ending, except the addition that she sees someone on the dock.

Extras on this release are pretty dull aside from the behind-the-scenes featurette. The alternate scenes and ending are nothing special to be honest, but it’s still nice to see them included. 5/10.

Blu-news Summary
The film is about a rebellious 17-year-old named Greta to is sent to live with her grandparents for the summer while her mother ‘fixes her marriage.’ She’s not necessarily your typical teenager, but at the same time she’s someone I’m sure many teens can relate to in at least one way.

Greta has this book in which she lists the many ways she could die and is very adamant about her plans to kill herself by the time she turns 18. Also included in the book are things she hopes to do before she dies, including eating a bug and losing her virginity among other things.

She ends up bored with the new lifestyle, no cable, a mean blue haired elderly woman for a neighbor, and a grandmother with set rules. She manages to get a job and begins to fall for a younger co-worker with a troubled background.

Greta’s personality and outlook on life does not turn from sad to happy very quickly. She faces lots of challenges while staying with her grandparents, the pain see feels from her mother, and some near death experiences. The movie is about challenges all teenagers will face in life to some degree, and the transition of growing up and becoming a responsible adult.

I actually am very surprised by this film, yes it’s quite predictable, but I like that nothing was really sugarcoated for teen audiences. The film is definitely a mix of comedy and drama, and I’m sure viewers will enjoy the mixture of genres in the film.

Hilary Duff was quite surprising as Greta, yes from time to time a line comes out a bit cheesy and overacted, but for the most part her performance was very emotional and believable. The supporting cast is all very talented, including Oscar-nominee Melissa Leo (Frozen River).

The movie is aimed at younger audiences, not necessarily tweens in this case as it does have some mature subjects and sexual references throughout. But the film could definitely click with teen girls in particular, and adults may find themselves surprised by this movie as well as there are very few like it. 7.5/10.

The Blu-ray release is actually very good, with a strong video presentation and expectantly decent audio track. Extras are a bit bland, but I’m sure some viewers will enjoy them. Overall this release is ‘Worth A Look.

Additional Screenshots:

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