The Human Resources Manager (2010)

If you create a user account, you can add your own review of this DVD

Released 5-Oct-2011

Cover Art

This review is sponsored by
BUY IT

Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Drama Theatrical Trailer
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2010
Running Time 99:00
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Eran Riklis
Studio
Distributor

Madman Entertainment
Starring Abraham B. Jehoshua
Noah Stollman
Mark Ivanir
Reymond Amsalem
Gila Almagor
Noah Silver
Irina Petrescu
Rosina Kambus
Guri Alfi
Julian Negulesco
Bogdan E. Stanoevitch
Case Amaray-Transparent
RPI $34.95 Music Cyril Morin


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None Hebrew Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.85:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.85:1 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

     Jerusalem. 2002. The human resources manager at the city's largest bakery is summoned by the owner, a woman known as The Widow, to discuss a looming public relations disaster. A newspaper article is due to be published in the morning press accusing the company of gross mismanagement and insensitivity. A month ago a young woman was killed in a suicide bomb attack and was taken into the morgue. She was unable to be identified save for a pay slip on her body which showed that, at the time of her death, she was employed by the bakery. How could it be, asks the proposed newspaper article, that a company could "lose" an employee and not care enough to notice her death? The human resources manager is tasked with sorting out the problem. In director Eran Riklis' wry comedy, titled The Human Resources Manager, this small task spirals into an all encompassing adventure which brings him into an understanding of his own humanity.

     As it happens, determining the identity of the woman, though difficult, is the easiest part. Her name is Yulia and she is from Romania, having come to Jerusalem as a migrant worker. Although the mystery of her disappearance is uncovered it doesn't mean the bakery is off the hook. With The Widow cracking the whip behind him the human resources manager is forced on a long odyssey to return the body of Yulia to the family. In a scene not far from the Griswolds, the coffin is strapped atop a range of vehicles and trundled through all manner of environments (cold of course!). All the while the pesky journalist is in tow, eager to report any human failing or lack of respect.

     Trouble is, her family is not that easy to locate or deal with. The human resources manager has with him a piece of paper and a pen just waiting for a signature so that he can hand over the body to the next of kin. As it happens Yulia's husband turns out to be her ex-husband. He is no longer able to sign for her. Her son turns out to be a minor with no power to sign documents. He is a feral teen found lurking in a squatter’s camp. Her hometown is nestled far-off the beaten track in the wilds of Romania.

     The man who begins the journey has resources but little humanity. He can't wait to get the dead woman off his slate and get back to his old life. As the journey progresses he gains a deeper understanding of the human condition and begins to question his role in her final resting place.

     A recent festival hit The Human Resources Manager is a gentle drama interspersed with comedy that makes more enjoyable if somewhat light weight viewing.

Don't wish to see plot synopses in the future? Change your configuration.

Transfer Quality

Video

     The Human Resources Manager was shot on 35mm film and was projected at the cinema at a 1.85:1 aspect ratio. That ratio has been preserved for this DVD release. It is 16x9 enhanced.

     The film is reasonably sharp. The flesh tones are accurate and the colours are stable and suitably muted particularly in those sections set in the decaying Communist Romania. There is a fairly heavy grain structure which can be slightly distracting. Otherwise there are no particular problems with the transfer.

     There are subtitles in English for the foreign language sections of the film.

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

Audio

     The sound for The Human Resources Manager is Dolby Digital 5.1 running at 448 Kb/s. The film contains a blend of Hebrew, Romanian and English. The English is not subtitled which can make it a little bit difficult to understand when the characters are speaking English with heavy accents.

     There is little for the surrounds or sub-woofer to do.

     The music is by experienced cinema composer Cyril Muhin (La Petit Jerusalem) who delivers a score of restraint and sensitivity.

     There are no technical problems with the soundtrack.

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

Extras

Theatrical Trailer

     This trailer is the only extra.

R4 vs R1

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

       According to Amazon the Region 1 version is cropped to 1.33:1 but information on it is scant.

Summary

     The Human Resources Manager is a film that doesn't really aspire to much - it is not a flat out comedy nor is it a deep drama. Instead it is a reflective film that will interest anyone with a passion for World cinema.

     The transfer is grain heavy but otherwise good and the sound is also competent.

     There are no real extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Trevor Darge (read my bio)
Monday, December 12, 2011
Review Equipment
DVDCambridge 650BD (All Regions), using HDMI output
DisplaySony VPL-VW80 Projector on 110" Screen. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.
AmplificationPioneer SC-LX 81 7.1
SpeakersAaron ATS-5 7.1

Other Reviews NONE
Comments (Add) NONE