A Few Words About A few words about...™ Anonymous -- in Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Robert Harris, Feb 9, 2012.

  1. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 1999
    Messages:
    9,281
    Likes Received:
    5,163
    Real Name:
    Robert Harris
    Roland Emmerich's Anonymous concerns a still unanswered question.


    Who was the real William Shakespeare?


    And by that I mean who really wrote what has come down through the centuries under his name?


    Anonymous attempts to answer that question, or at least points us toward one of the prime candidates, and does it beautifully, with great style, and with more suspense and intrigue than one might presume would come from the tale.


    Let's get the negative out of the way first.


    I deplore forced trailers and ads. And Anonymous is filled to the brim with them.


    It took me almost five minutes to finally get the main attraction on screen, after the various warnings, and (I lost count) five or six trailers. And no means of getting to a main menu.


    That's the only negative.


    Since beginning a discussion of security stickers vs. our environment, I'm pleased to report that Anonymous has none. That tells me that either Sony isn't as concerned about a copy being purloined as, for example, Lionsgate's Shakespeare in Love...


    or alternatively, Sony has more concern for the planet, landfill, etc., which I believe to be the case.


    We'll be keeping track of security stickers as time goes by, and possibly rating by the number attached to discs.


    From a personal perspective, I loved Anonymous, for the story, background and generally the era. The Shakespeare controversy is a very real ongoing discussion. And having both had the opportunity to handle original Shakespeare folios, as well as to trod the earth where the stage had once been, at the time of the re-discovery of the theatre in 1989, I am generally a fan of anything to do with the subject.


    As a Blu-ray, Anonymous has its own very specific look. From almost colorless at times, imagery represented in a slightly colored sepia, to other expressions of the DI colorist's and filmmaker's desires, the film never failed to please.


    And neither does the Blu-ray.


    The overall representation of the film on Blu-ray takes advantage of every one of Blu-rays technical attributes, both visual as well as aural, and the final expression, on screen, looks precisely as one would hope.


    Like cinema, achieved via HDCAM. In this case, the Arri Alexa. Audio is (naturally) DTS-HD Master Audio.


    Anonymous is a terrific piece of entertainment, brought to Blu-ray with perfection, which is as it should be.


    Highly Recommended.


    RAH
     
  2. Richard--W

    Richard--W Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2004
    Messages:
    3,527
    Likes Received:
    167
    I think I'll pass on Anonymous. There is such a thing as being too skeptical. Conspiracy theorists and imposter theorists never run out of angles and dodges. Who wrote Shakespeare's plays? Shakespeare did. No doubt he probably did some editing and consulting for other writers, colleagues and contemporaries, as playwrights still do today. No doubt his plays impacted other playwrights, and no doubt other playwrights imitated him. After all, he worked in the theatrical profession among theatrical people. He did not live in an ivory tower or in a vacuum. But that does not mean he didn't write the plays or that he wrote other plays he wasn;t credited with.
     
  3. TomTom

    TomTom Agent

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2002
    Messages:
    44
    Likes Received:
    4
    Mr. Harris, It appears this film was actually recorded onto codex hard drives with minor compression and not sony media. Thank you for all your "A few words about" reviews!
     
  4. theonemacduff

    theonemacduff Second Unit

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2010
    Messages:
    392
    Likes Received:
    114
    Location:
    the wet coast
    Real Name:
    Jon Paul
    Absolutely agree with this. If you look at what Shakespeare's contemporaries said about him, they were in no doubt whatever that he wrote the plays that bear his name. In fact, they thought so much of him that after he was dead, they collected all his old scripts and put out a collected edition. Today, that's normal for great writers. In 1623 it was almost unheard of, and shows that they thought his work was something special. At the beginning of that book (the so-called First Folio), his colleague Ben Johnson wrote a tribute to him that praises both the man and his art; "I confesse thy writings to be such/As neither Man nor Muse can praise too much," says Ben. "Soul of the Age!/The Applause! delight! the wonder of our Stage!" and he goes on to praise him specifically as a writer, worthy companion to Chaucer and Spenser, and one to challenge the greatest that the ancients had to offer. "Sweet Swan of Avon," he calls him, and says "He was not of an age, but for all time!" (those un-Jacobean exclamation points again!). Those interested in the real Earl of Oxford might want to try Alan H. Nelson's recent biography.
     
  5. marcco00

    marcco00 Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2010
    Messages:
    218
    Likes Received:
    32
    Location:
    Los Angeles, California
    Real Name:
    marc
    i bought it solely for vanessa redgrave's performance as elizabeth 1, my favorite historical character. elizabeth's scenes and essex's revolt were the best things in the film, the rest not so much, IMHO. 'anonymous' is 'shakespeare in love''s dark evil twin!!:P
     
  6. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 1999
    Messages:
    9,281
    Likes Received:
    5,163
    Real Name:
    Robert Harris

    However held, precisely where the data goes, how long it stays there, and how, when and where it is protected, is more of the more daunting things about data vs. film capture.


    RAH
     
  7. Richard--W

    Richard--W Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2004
    Messages:
    3,527
    Likes Received:
    167
    These conspiracy and imposter theorists have no experience in the theater. Actors and crew people write on their scripts. They make notes, draw diagrams, change dialogue slightly so that it can be spoken trippingly off the tongue, and generally scribble a lot on the page. Whether or not to use contractions in your speech can be a major decision, depending on the emotion you're dredging up. Scribble shows the actor and crew people are preparing and working. Some journalist finds that scribbled script 3-400 years later and decides it must be a hitherto unknown Original Draft / Revised Draft by some other playwright. You just can't reason with these people. They get a lot of attention and sell a lot of books and get paid to be talking heads on the so-called History Channel, but that doesn't mean they know what they're talking about.
     
  8. JParker

    JParker Second Unit

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2011
    Messages:
    309
    Likes Received:
    5
    I really am not responding to the individuals who posted; however, if readers of Mr. Harris' review decide not to view the film based on the belief that there is a conspiracy, and not on the merits of the film itself, that would be a shame. First of all, a conspiracy involves crime. Ignorance is a shame and perhaps a sin, but not a crime. Many creative people, not the establishment 'scholars', have challenged the authorship of the man from Stratford. I do no know what the posters do for a living and throughout the Internet any challenges to orthodox ideas are classified as conspiracy. But the works of Shakespeare were written in an environment of intellectual liberty, which is sadly lacking in our time, except for the challenge of the Internet. More to the point, Sir. Derek Jacobi, Mark Twain, Orson Welles, Freud all doubted the explanation of authorship and I am certain the posters do not have equivalent credentials. Furthermore, Shapiro, who represents the 'establishment' wrote a book that addresses these issues but we shall see that his response has in fact failed. There is a great deal of scholarship on the authorship; in fact do the readers of this post know this connection, one of several, in Hamlet, to De Vere, which is discussed in the book Shakespeare by Another Name by Anderson: Website: http://shakespearebyanothername.com/index.html http://shakespearebyanothername.blogspot.com/2011/05/hamlet-elsinore-and-exploded-world.html
    There is no evidence that Shakespeare of Stratford even attended a grammar school. I will post a few links, again of excellent scholarship. A new book by Richard Malim is discussed here : http://www.deveresociety.co.uk/DVS-publications.html http://www.amazon.com/Earl-Oxford-Making-%2522Shakespeare%2522-Literary/dp/0786463139/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1329593760&sr=1-1 http://www.deveresociety.co.uk/authorship.html See this site as well: http://www.shakespeare-oxford.com/?page_id=90 Shapiro, who felt compelled to respond to challenges to his 'orthodox faith' is challenged here: http://www.deveresociety.co.uk/News&Events-20.html
    My point is that no one should not see the film due to any preconceptions and contrary to the posts here, there are many people who challenge the authorship. Even this economics site discusses the editing of Shakespeare: http://mises.org/daily/5803 Let Mr. Harris have the last words; I find him wise:
     

Share This Page