In Her Shoes (2005)

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Released 8-Feb-2006

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Drama Main Menu Introduction
Main Menu Audio & Animation
Featurette-The People In The Shoes
Featurette-A Retirement Community For Acting Seniors
Featurette-From Death Row To The Red Carpet: The Casting Of Honey Bun
Web Links
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2005
Running Time 125:03
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (43:24) Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Curtis Hanson
Studio
Distributor

Twentieth Century Fox
Starring Cameron Diaz
Shirley MacLaine
Toni Collette
Richard Burgi
Candice Azzara
Brooke Smith
John Mastrangelo Sr.
Emilio Mignucci
Mark Feuerstein
Terrance Christopher Jones
Nicole Randall Johnson
Kateri DeMartino
Brandon Karrer
Case ?
RPI $39.95 Music Mark Isham


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English 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 for the Hearing Impaired Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    From the Academy Award winning writer/director of LA Confidential and 8 Mile, Curtis Hanson comes...A CHICK FLICK...!?! Yes, as surprising as it may sound this film was indeed directed (and produced) by Curtis Hanson as the latest feature film in his quite eclectic career. However, writing this film off as a 'chick flick' would be quite unfair as it is actually quite a good and interesting film.

    The plot of this film focuses on two sisters whose mother died while they were still young girls. The sisters are Rose Feller (Toni Collette), a successful but lonely and workaholic lawyer and Maggie May Feller (Cameron Diaz) who is a nearly illiterate loser who goes from one job to another sponging off men and her sister to keep a roof over her head. They were brought up by their father and his horrible second wife, Sydelle, who always treated them like second class citizens compared to her own daughter. The movie opens with Rose receiving a call to pick up her drunk and embarrassing sister from a school reunion. Upon arrival she finds Maggie passed out on a couch wearing shoes she has pinched from Rose. Rose allows her sister to stay with her after realising that she has nowhere to go as their step-mother has grown sick of her behaviour. It quickly becomes obvious that this was a bad idea as she makes her life difficult and causes issues in her apartment. Things really come to a head, however, when Maggie seduces Rose's boss who is also having a relationship with Rose.

    At this point, the title comes into play as by different paths the two girls change their lives and start to understand each other better in the process. Rose decides she has had enough of the corporate life and quits her job to become a dog walker. Maggie, on the other hand, after Rose throws her out, discovers the existence of a grandmother (their mother's mother) who's interest in them has been kept from them over the years. Maggie decides to try to get some money out of the grandmother by going to visit her in Florida where she lives. It is here that her life changes, driven by her grandmother, Ella (Shirley Maclaine) not being the sort of person who will just hand cash over. The rest of the film follows Maggie, Rose & Ella's life changes and eventual reconciliation.

    This is a surprisingly effective film which explores many interesting themes such as the effects of mental illness on families, the relationship between sisters, how self esteem issues affect our lives, and the effect of fractured and dysfunctional families. Once again Toni Collette shows her great talent as an actress in what must have been a somewhat difficult role and it is nice to see Shirley Maclaine playing a serious and meaty role rather than the lighter things I have seen her in recently like Bewitched. I found Cameron Diaz a little more difficult to believe, not as the irresponsible party girl which came across well but rather as the fragile and illiterate side of the character. This is very much a character driven piece with a focus on family relationships and is certainly not a comedy, despite some minor comedic elements.

    Recommended.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The video quality is excellent.

    The feature is presented in a 2.35:1 aspect ratio 16x9 enhanced which is the original aspect ratio.

    The picture was very clear and sharp throughout, with no evidence of low level noise. Shadow detail was excellent.

    The colour was wonderful, rich and solid throughout.

    There were no noticeable artefacts of any kind.

    There are subtitles in English for the hearing impaired. The English subtitles were clear, easy to read and very close to the spoken word.

    The layer change occurs at 43:24 and was not noticeable.
    

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 an English Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack encoded at 448 Kb/s. This is a front focused soundtrack as you would expect from a character & dialogue driven movie.

    Dialogue was clear and easy to understand and there was no problem with audio sync.

    The score of this film by Mark Isham is very good including a nice theme.

    The surround speakers added some atmosphere, mostly in the form of music.

    The subwoofer added bass to the music as required.

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

Extras

    A small and rather average collection of extras is included, taking the form of three featurettes.

Menu

    The menu included scenes from the movie, music, and the ability to select scenes, languages and subtitles.

The People in the Shoes (15:32)

    This is the best of the extras and is essentially a making of style featurette including interviews with the director, screenwriter, novelist and cast members. They discuss the material, characters' cinematography and production design. Not bad.

A Retirement Community for Acting Seniors (10:36)

    A fairly tedious featurette about the seniors community in Florida which was used as Ella's home in the film. Includes interviews with many of the residents who were used as extras and minor characters in the film.

From Death Row to the Red Carpet : The Casting of Honey Bun (7:22)

    A featurette about the dog they used to play Honey Bun in the film and the fact that they rescued him from a pound. Give me a break!

R4 vs R1

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

    This movie is available globally in essentially the same format, although the Region 1 does include Spanish and French soundtracks. Unless you are interested in those this is a draw.

Summary

    A quality chick flick style film featuring some excellent acting and a well told story.

    The video quality is excellent.

    The audio quality is very good.

    The set has three featurettes as extras, which are nothing special.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV667A DVD-V DVD-A SACD, 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
SpeakersMonitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Yamaha YST SW90 subwoofer

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