The Heartbreak Kid (1993)

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Released 7-Apr-2005

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Drama Filmographies-Cast & Crew
Short Film-Country Comfort
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 1993
Running Time 93:25 (Case: 97)
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Michael Jenkins

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring Claudia Karvan
Alex Dimitriades
Nick Lathouris
Steve Bastoni
Doris Younane
George Vidalis
Louis Mandylor
William McInnes
Jasper Bagg
Fonda Goniadis
Katherine Halliday
Scott Major
Harry Shiamaris
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI $19.95 Music John Clifford White

Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.85:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English for the Hearing Impaired Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    The Heartbreak Kid is an enjoyable Australian film about forbidden love set in a very recognisable suburban world of school playgrounds, classrooms, Greek weddings and soccer clubs.

    Written and directed by Michael Jenkins, the story of The Heartbreak Kid centres around Christina Papadopoulos (Claudia Karvan). Christina is a sweet and well-meaning 22-year-old school teacher, engaged to ambitious lawyer Dimitri (Steve Bastoni). Christina's entire future seems planned out for her - albeit planned by her fiancé, her father and her priest.

    The lively 17-year-old Nick Polides (Alex Dimitriades) is a student in Christina's class. Nick and Christina find themselves attracted to each other as both begin to rebel against the constricting Australian-Greek cultural restraints put upon them.

    When Christina becomes the coach of the school soccer team, she and Nick begin to spend more time together outside of school hours. Soon their mutual attraction ignites into an illicit, passionate affair.

    With great direction and wonderful performances from all the cast members, The Heartbreak Kid is a well-made film which spawned a reasonably successful television serial.

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Transfer Quality


    The image of the transfer is reasonable, but it does have a few noticeable problems.

    The transfer is presented in a widescreen aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and is 16x9 enhanced.

    The image is reasonably sharp throughout. The black level is good, but the shadow detail suffers. For example, consider the lack of detail in the dark images at 24:29 or 57:47. The colour appears dated and a little murky. For example, the whites are a little grey or off-white. The skin tones are accurate.

    MPEG artefacts are present, such as the macro blocking in the background at 24:10. There are no problems with film-to-video artefacts.

    A theatrical print seems to have been used for the source material, and a variety of large and distracting film artefacts such as dust and scratches appear throughout. Even the film's reel change markings appear.

    The English for the Hearing Impaired subtitles are accurate.

    This is a single-sided, single-layer disc, with the feature divided into 12 chapters.

Video Ratings Summary
Shadow Detail
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts


    The audio is also reasonable, but limited.

    I assume the film was originally released in stereo surround, but the DVD offers audio options of English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s) and English Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s).

    The dialogue quality and audio sync suffer throughout, with some very obvious ADR work. There is also a lot of dodgy Foley work, and the film seems to have a very crude approach to sound design.

    The musical score is credited to John Clifford White and a number of songs are also used throughout. Indeed, the most memorable music in the film is the inspired and appropriate use of U2's song, One.

    The Dolby Digital 5.1 mix sounds more like a Stereo Surround track, and the surround presence and activity is largely limited to providing some subtle ambience throughout, such as during the football (soccer) match at 7:57, or in the school hallway at 48:00.

    The subwoofer is used largely to support the Hip Hop music, and I found the LFE track seemed a little too prominent in the sound mix.

Audio Ratings Summary
Audio Sync
Surround Channel Use


    There are only a few extras.


    A simple menu, it is static with stereo audio.

Filmographies - Cast & Crew

    This is a text-based extra that lists their film credits. Strangely, it claims that Claudia Karvan appeared in Star Wars Episode III.

Short Film-Country Comfort (1987)

    Presented in an aspect ratio of 1.66:1 non-16x9 enhanced with Dolby Digital stereo audio, this AFTRS short film was written, directed, and produced by Adolfo Cruzado and runs for approximately three minutes. Its connection with the feature is that it stars Claudia Karvan.

R4 vs R1

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

    So far The Heartbreak Kid has not been released on DVD in Region 1.


    Although the weak ending is a bit of a cop-out, The Heartbreak Kid is an enjoyable movie that manages to provide a decent serving of both drama and comedy.

    The video quality is reasonable.

    The audio quality is also acceptable.

    The extras are slim.

Ratings (out of 5)


© Brandon Robert Vogt (warning: bio hazard)
Tuesday, July 04, 2006
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-535, using S-Video output
DisplayGrundig Elegance 82-2101 (82cm, 16x9). Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationSony STR DE-545
SpeakersSony SS-V315 x5; Sony SA-WMS315 subwoofer

Other Reviews NONE
Comments (Add)
Star Wars - Dave D (read my bio)
She plays Padme's sister - grug (there is no bio.)
Re: Star Wars - tnd