Lucia Lucia (Hija del Canibal, La) (2003)

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Released 20-Jul-2004

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Comedy None
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2003
Running Time 103:52
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 2,4 Directed By Antonio Serrano
Studio
Distributor
Titan Producciones
Twentieth Century Fox
Starring Cecilia Roth
Carlos Álvarez-Novoa
Kuno Becker
Case ?
RPI ? Music Nacho Mastretta


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 (384Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.35:1
16x9 Enhancement
Not 16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles Arabic
English
French
Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    I knew very little about this film when I chose to review it. I based my choice on two factors; firstly, that I enjoy movies of most genres and secondly, I had vaguely heard that this was a worthwhile film. It certainly is a worthwhile film and I found it enjoyable, interesting and it quickly drew me into the story.

    Lucia, Lucia is the name that this film was released under in the USA but it is also known as La Hija Del Canibal which literally means the daughter of the cannibal. The film is an interesting mixture of mystery, thriller, romance and a drama about human relationships which approaches its subject with a light comedic touch. The film is set in Mexico and is in Spanish.

    The story begins with Lucia (Cecilia Roth), a middle-aged woman searching the airport for her husband of 12 years, Ramon. Their plane for a holiday in South America is boarding and her husband has not returned from the bathroom. She ends up not being able to find him and returns home. A couple of days later, she receives a phone call telling her that her husband has been kidnapped and is being held for ransom by a group calling themselves 'Worker Pride'. Lucia strikes up a friendship with two of her neighbours, who both want to help her. They are a young man in his early twenties, Adrian (Kuno Becker) and an old man in his late sixties, Felix Robles (Carlos Alvarez-Novoa). It turns out that Felix is a revolutionary who fought against Franco in Spain before escaping to Mexico where he has lived ever since. Whilst working together to determine what has happened to Ramon, Lucia, Adrian & Felix also try to avoid getting themselves into trouble. As the film progresses the relationships between the three main protagonists change and the film ultimately is more about their relationships than it is about finding Ramon.

    I enjoyed this film very much. I found it heartwarming, without being vaguely cloying and it also got me thinking about how the mystery/thriller side of the story would unfold. It is very different to a Hollywood production which made it all the more interesting. The performances of the leading actors are all strong which helped me to empathise with their characters and get involved in the story. Another interesting facet of the film is that Lucia's occasional voiceovers are not always what they seem. I won't explain this to avoid giving it away but pay attention to what she says.

    So, if you enjoy foreign films with their little quirks and different approach to storytelling, I would recommend this as one worth seeing.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The video quality is very good but slightly spoiled by the lack of 16x9 enhancement.

    The feature is presented in a 2.35:1 aspect ratio non 16x9 enhanced which is the original aspect ratio. The lack of 16x9 enhancement reduces the sharpness of the presentation which would probably have been excellent if not for this issue.

    The picture was clear and sharp throughout but not crisp, with no evidence of low level noise. Shadow detail was pretty good and there was never a problem with missing details. There was some light grain throughout which became worse in some scenes such as at 56:10.

    The colour was very good throughout with all colours being well saturated and free from colour bleeding.

    There were only minimal artefacts including an occasional white speck or two and one spot of minor aliasing at 21:45 on a grille.

    There are subtitles in Arabic, English and French. The English subtitles were clear, easy to read and in very good English. The lack of 16x9 enhancement gives one small benefit in that the subtitles are not over the picture.
    

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

Audio

    The audio quality is very good.

    This DVD contains one audio option, a Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack encoded at 384 Kb/s.

    Dialogue was generally clear and easy to understand, however, as it was in Spanish this did not help me that much.

    The score of this film by Nacho Mastretta was excellent - full of great little touches and some very enjoyable Spanish guitar. I enjoyed the music greatly.

    The surround speakers are used regularly, sometimes for directional effects such as at the bus station at 37:00, but mostly they just added atmosphere.

    The subwoofer was not used very much, but considering the nature of the film, this is to be expected. I did notice some LFE at around 38:00.

    

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

Extras

Menu

    The menu included nothing except subtitle and scene selection functions.

R4 vs R1

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

    The Region 4 version of this disc misses out on;

    The Region 1 version of this disc misses out on;

   Based upon the above, the Region 1 would have to be considered the better version.

Summary

    This disc contains an interesting thriller/mystery/comedy/relationship drama from Mexico.

    The video quality is very good but lacks 16x9 enhancement.

    The audio quality is very good.

    The disc has no extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Thursday, August 19, 2004
Review Equipment
DVDToshiba 1200, using Component output
DisplaySony FD Trinitron Wega KV-AR34M36 80cm. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL)/480i (NTSC).
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationPioneer VSX-511
SpeakersBose 201 Direct Reflecting (Front), Phillips SB680V (Surround), Phillips MX731 (Center), Yamaha YST SW90 (Sub)

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