Vanishing Waves (2012)

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Released 18-Sep-2013

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Science Fiction Trailer-Accent trailers x 30
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2012
Running Time 115:19
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By Kristina Buozyte
Studio
Distributor
Accent Film Entertainment Starring Marius Jampoliskis
Jurga Jutaite
Vytautas Karaminaite
Martina Jablonskyte
Rudolfas Jansonas
Case Amaray-Opaque
RPI ? Music Peter von Poehl


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None Lithuanian Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.35:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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Plot Synopsis

     Lukas (Marius Jampoliskis) is part of a team of neurobiologists led by Mantas (Vytautas Karaminaite) investigating the possibility of the transfer of information via neuron waves between individuals. They have determined that the best source to use in experiments is a comatose individual, as the wave transfer will be limited and manageable. Lukas volunteers to take part in an experiment to tap into the brain of a patient who has become comatose following a car accident. He knows nothing of the patient and in theory he is supposed to observe and report to the team what happens when he is linked to the patient but have no interaction with them.

     When the experiment starts however Lukas discovers the source is a young woman named Aurora (Jurga Jutaite); but rather than having no interaction as intended they quickly start a sexual relationship. Instead of reporting this to his team Lukas keeps the information to himself, and each time he is linked to Aurora he gets more involved with her disturbed psyche and her sexual inclinations. This is a surreal landscape within her mind: a house built of a miscellaneous, jumbled collection of pieces of timber beside a body of water, bare rooms with unnatural colour schemes, a dinner that abruptly changes in tone to an empty opera house, empty except for a shadowy figure who follows them. But who is feeding who the sexual fantasies? Are they her obsessions mixed with his sexual frustrations? As Lukas’ relationship with his partner Lina (Martina Jablonskyte) deteriorates, and his behaviour becomes more erratic, Lukas breaks all ethical considerations and seeks out the comatose body of Aurora in the hospital, and starts to intervene in her medical treatment. It seems that Aurora is repressing memories of her past and of the car crash, and as Lukas delves deeper it may be that some memories are better left repressed.

     I cannot remember too many films made in Lithuania, but if Vanishing Waves is an example I would love to see more. Vanishing Waves is a science fiction psychological thriller that is complex, unsettling, erotic, disorienting and intriguing, well scripted and well-acted by its leads. Lukas starts out with a woman who would be a dream lover, but as their relationship develops through sex to power to jealousy, it, no less than Lucas’ life and research, spirals out of control leading to an emotionally draining, but ultimately satisfying, climax.

     I did not know what to expect from Vanishing Waves and I found myself being intrigued and drawn into Lucas’ world. The acting from Marius Jampoliskis and Jurga Jutaite is excellent, the ideas complex, and the film driven by the techno and mechanical score by Peter von Poehl. Vanishing Waves is a compelling and powerful film about memory, loss, relationships and pain that is an unexpected surprise.

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Transfer Quality

Video

     Vanishing Waves is presented in an aspect ratio of 2.35:1, the original ratio, and is 16x9 enhanced.

     The film has some vibrant colours. Indeed, some of the fantasy sequences use a rosy red filter that gives quite a stunning effect. The film is also sharp and detailed, except when in some sequences a deliberate haziness is introduced for effect. Skin tones are natural, brightness and contrast deliberately varies.

     There was occasional motion blur but no marks. However the major issue was obvious interlacing, especially in the latter half of the film. At first I thought that this was another deliberate effect during the fantasy sequences, but then it started appearing in the real sections, such as at 82:15 or 84:02. In the climactic sequence where Lukas chases Aurora in the dark through the sand dunes the horizontal lines were clear, affecting both the picture and the solidity of the black background. I did recheck the trailer which uses part of this scene: the interlacing was not there, although the trailer was full of other artefacts, looking very grainy.

     White subtitles translated the Lithuanian dialogue. They were error free.

     Some of the print looks stunning and detailed, but it is affected by the interlacing.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

     Audio is a Lithuanian Dolby Digital 5.1 track at 448 Kbps, although there are substantial sections of English dialogue.

     This is an excellent audio track. In sequences when Lukas is going under to connect with Aurora the entire sound stage is used for electronic and mechanical sound effects that run around the room. At other times all the speakers are used for music and other effects. The subwoofer added a deep rumble to scenes as required, and to the music.

     The original music by Peter von Poehl was varied and very effective, adding to the unsettling mood when required as well as providing romantic cues.

     I did not notice any lip synchronisation issues.

     This is a very good, enveloping audio track.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

Trailers

     On start-up there were trailers for The Conspiracy, Hotel Noir, Splintered, Shadows of Liberty and Circle of Lies, that collectively run 10:09. A total of 30 trailers of Accent Film Entertainment releases can be selected from the menu; some of the start-up trailers are repeated and we do get a trailer for Vanishing Waves. There is a “play all” option.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

     The Region 1 US release of Vanishing Waves is a 2 disc set that includes as extras writer / director Kristina Buozyte's first feature Kolekcioniere, a short interview with Buozyte, a making-of featurette, eighteen selections from the film's soundtrack with informational text, and a booklet. Reviews do not mention any issues with the video. The US release is definitely the better package.

Summary

     Vanishing Waves is a powerful and erotic film. I was hooked by its themes of memory, loss, relationships and pain; the delivery and acting is excellent, the climax is emotionally draining but ultimately satisfying. Vanishing Waves is a surprise and definitely worth seeking out by anyone interested in quality psychological drama.

     The video has issues but the audio is very good. A raft of trailers is the only extra as we miss out on the extensive extras available in the US.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Ray Nyland (the bio is the thing)
Friday, November 22, 2013
Review Equipment
DVDSony BDP-S580, using HDMI output
DisplayLG 55inch HD LCD. This display device has not been calibrated. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderNAD T737. This audio decoder/receiver has not been calibrated.
AmplificationNAD T737
SpeakersStudio Acoustics 5.1

Other Reviews NONE
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