Knife Edge (Blu-ray) (2010)

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Released 1-Dec-2010

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Thriller None
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2010
Running Time 94:32
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By Anthony Hickox
Studio
Distributor
Seven Arts
Icon Entertainment
Starring Hugh Bonneville
Joan Plowright
Natalie Press
Lorcan O'Toole
Matthieu Boujenah
Miles Ronayne
Case Amaray-Transparent
RPI Box Music Guy Farley


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby TrueHD 5.1 (768Kb/s)
English DTS HD Master Audio 5.1 (1920Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement Unknown
Video Format 1080p
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

"The Perfect House. The Perfect Husband. The Perfect Murder"

     Emma (Natalie Press) is a successful Wall Street trader with psychic abilities who returns home to England with her apparently successful designer husband Henri (Matthieu Boujenah) and their young son Thomas. Henri has secretly bought a huge country mansion to house his young family and Emma looks forward to leaving behind her stock trading days and become a house mum. Soon after arrival Emma’s slacker brother Andrew (Lorcan O'Toole) makes an unwelcome appearance to complain about the inheritance due to Emma which is under the trusteeship of family friend Charles (Hugh Bonneville). Andrew has squandered his share of the proceeds and is resentful that his sister is now successful, independently wealthy and due to receive a large stipend from the family estate. Events soon become even more unsettling for Emma as she has visions of a past murder and her son makes an imaginary friend called Tobias. Her husband Henri is also hiding a secret which begins to tear apart the happy façade of their marriage. Following the appointment of the vaguely mysterious nanny Marjorie (Joan Plowright) events begin to spiral out of control with the atmosphere of menace finally descending into sheer terror and a fight for survival.

     In writing and directing Knife Edge Anthony Hickox has borrowed heavily from other accomplished psychologically based horror/thriller movies. The house and contents are reminiscent of Amityville Horror, one scene is a direct take from The Shining and the plot twists like Hush, Hush Sweet Charlotte. In main characters Emma and Henri we have adequate performances, if not totally convincing. The two never seem to have any chemistry together and Press in particular is a rather bland heroine. On the other hand veterans Bonneville and Plowright show us how acting should be done in the classical English way, with O’Toole a very accomplished cad. Fortunately out of these components Hickox has crafted together a commendably capable thriller which harks back to the days before gore and excessive blood became a requirement. This is no Hitchcock masterpiece but nevertheless the ninety minutes are sufficiently absorbing to offset any negatives.

     Knife Edge is the second movie included as a double-header disc along with Nine Miles Down.

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Transfer Quality

Video

     This film is presented in its cinematic 1.78:1 aspect. This is an adequate transfer but no improvement on DVD quality. Blacks were good and there was no trouble in differentiating objects during night and dimly lit scenes. Colours were also good although outside scenes in particular had a washed-out palette possibly contributed to by the rather gloomy looking weather. Flesh tones were a bit patchy with facial close ups in particular showing variations of colour across the features. There was quite a bit of digital noise throughout although it was noticeably better in the infrequent bright outdoor scenes.

     Overall the video quality is rated as good. The picture detail was sharp enough but somewhat noisy. There were no film artefacts. This is a dual layer disc but I could not see the layer change using my equipment.

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

Audio

     This audio track overall is very good. The default DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 at around 2,100Kb/s delivers a good soundstage with directional effects quite well used. The alternative Dolby Digital TrueHD 5.1 at around 900Kb/s is very similar to the DTS offering and so I would not prefer one over the other.

     This is mostly a dialogue driven movie so fortunately the audio synchronisation was fine and voices were clear and easy to understand. There were no clicks or dropouts or any other audio problems that I noticed. The movie score by Guy Farley complements the on screen action well and never intrudes. The front sound stage was very good with main voices coming from the centre channel and effects used appropriately from all directions. Surround channel use was appropriate and complemented the action well. The subwoofer was used discretely and complemented the effects well.

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

Extras

Menu

    The menu featured looping audio with static background.

R4 vs R1

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

    This Blu-ray twin movie offering does not seem to be duplicated elsewhere however there are Knife Edge movie only versions available on Region 1, Region 2 and Region 4 DVD. If you have a blu-ray player then I think this version would be the best option.

Summary

     Knife Edge borrows heavily from numerous classical horror movies but fortunately carries it off rather well. Director Hickox uses all the clichés typical of a ghost/thriller movie including sinister characters, creepy dolls, bumps in the night and well timed thunder storms to keep the viewer on edge without descending into an orgy of blood letting (although there is a fair bit towards the end). There are no extras as such however I'd class this movie as recommended if you can find it at a reasonable price.

     The video quality is good. The audio quality is very good. Extras are confined to the "bonus" movie Nine Miles Down.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Mike B (read my bio)
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Review Equipment
DVDDenon DVD-3910 and Panasonic BD-35, using HDMI output
DisplayPanasonic TH-58PZ850A. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL).
AmplificationDenon AVR-3808 pre-out to Elektra Theatron 7 channel amp
SpeakersB&W LCR600 centre and 603s3 mains, Niles in ceiling surrounds, SVS PC-Ultra Sub

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