Rake-Series Four (2016)
Main Menu Audio
Featurette-Behind The Scenes
|Year Of Production||2016|
|RSDL / Flipper||
Multi Disc Set (3)
|Cast & Crew|
|Start Up||Ads Then Menu|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||Peter Duncan|
Roadshow Home Entertainment
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||English Dolby Digital 2.0|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.78:1||Miscellaneous|
|Subtitles||English for the Hearing Impaired||Smoking||No|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
There is certainly some great Australian television being made at the moment. One example of this is the marvellous comedy drama series, Rake. Rake has been running for four seasons now (the fourth is included in this three disc set) and there will hopefully be more, following Cleaver Greene's ongoing adventures. The series was the brainchild of star Richard Roxburgh, writer Peter Duncan and inspiration, lawyer Charles Waterstreet. They are credited as the creators of the concept.
In this context the word rake refers to a dissolute man in fashionable society, which is an excellent description of the main character, Cleaver Green (Richard Roxburgh). The character is loosely based on the well-known lawyer and man about town Charles Waterstreet. Cleaver is a highly skilled criminal barrister who defends all sorts of people, many of whom are guilty as charged. His life style is a miasma of prostitutes, gambling, associating with criminals, political corruption, drink and drugs. He has loyal friends but also many people who are either annoyed with him, angry with him or want to hurt him. His friends include Barney Meagher (Russell Dykstra), a solicitor who briefs him for a lot of his cases, Wendy (Caroline Brazier), his ex-wife, Missy Partridge (Adrienne Pickering), a former prostitute and now successful author, and his long-suffering secretary, Nicole (Kate Box). Those who are somewhere in the spectrum of enemies include the former NSW Police Minister and Attorney General, Cal McGregor (Damien Garvey), the Opposition Spokesman for many portfolios, 'Harry Sorry' David Potter (Matt Day) plus a variety of others who sometimes switch from one camp to the other. We meet some new enemies for Cleaver in this series including Edgar Thompson (John Waters) a criminal who Cleaver defended in the past. We left Season 3 with Barney in a hot air balloon with Cleaver hanging off the balloon by a rope. This season opens with Cleaver being deposited in the window of a house where lunch is underway and Barney being blown out to sea towards New Zealand. This results in Cleaver going into hiding in the country fearing for his life and Barney being up for a large rescue bill from the government. Other cast members this season include Rachel Blake and Miriam Margolyes.
Unlike previous seasons the legal cases are reduced in this series with more focus on the lives and loves of the main characters, tragedies, danger, career changes, marriage proposals and more. This series includes 8 episodes, each of just under an hour. One again this season is a masterpiece of television, full of drama, human emotion, comedy, wonderful dialogue and more. It is very engaging and highly entertaining. Roxburgh is marvellous as Cleaver Green, funny, emotional, superbly raffish and shambling from one disaster to the next in his personal life.
This review is of the DVD version, however, I have also been able to view one disc of the 2 disc Blu-ray version which is a significant improvement over this in both sound and vision.
This is great Australian television. Highly recommended!
The video quality is decent.
The series is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio which is the original aspect ratio. It is 16x9 enhanced.
The picture was fairly soft for a new DVD of a new source. Backgrounds were quite ill-defined at times. The shadow detail was good.
The colour was good but dull compared to the Blu-ray.
There was some motion blur but no other noticeable artefacts.
There are subtitles in English for the Hearing Impaired which are clear and easy to read.
The layer changes are not obvious.
The audio quality is good.
This set contains an English soundtrack in Dolby Digital 2.0.
Dialogue was mostly clear and easy to hear and understand, although the subtitles were useful at times. The soundtrack displayed some good front separation.
The music sounds great and is a big part of the show's jaunty atmosphere.
The surround speakers and subwoofer were not used.
|Surround Channel Use|
The menu included music.
A quite interesting but short featurette about the character, the story and the ending of this season (which is awesome).
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
This set does not seem to be available outside of Region 4.
The video quality is decent.
The audio quality is good.One extra.
|DVD||Panasonic DMR-PWT500, using HDMI output|
|Display||Sharp LC52LE820X Quattron 52" Full HD LED-LCD TV . Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.|
|Audio Decoder||Built into amplifier. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.|
|Speakers||Monitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Sony SAW2500M Subwoofer|