Published on January 16th, 2023 | by Chris O'Connor
Directed By… Roland Joffe (Imprint Collection Special Edition) Blu-Ray Review
Summary: With fantastic casts and gripping themes, Roland Joffe brings viewers along for some very moving storytelling.
My first memorable encounter with Roland Joffe’s work was watching The Killing Fields in High school (presumably English class?)… so that’s going back a few decades but it left a distinct impression on me. Thanks to Imprint I was able to delve into more of Mr Joffe’s work via their “Directed By…” range and I have to say from my two foray’s into this range (previously Jim Sheridan’s collection) I am really impressed with the package.
Essentially we get four movies from the given director, in this case those are The Killing Fields, The Mission, Fat man and Little Boy and City Of Joy. There’s clearly a historic interest here with stories focusing on some pretty major events and Roland Joffe does a great job of bringing us into these stories and giving us a feel for what it might have been like. It’s certainly not always pretty, there’s no inclination towards a “Hollywood” ending… these are stories showing gritty realities (well… at least semi fictionalised versions of real events in some cases).
Given the age of the films, the transfers are really quite commendable. There are signs of the limitations of the technology of the day (most notable in dark scenes)… but overall the image quality is quite high and though perhaps not as lush and vivid as we are starting to expect now… they aren’t overly muted either (somewhat… but that I think is again more related to the technology of the time).
The audio is similarly quite respectable for it’s age. I believe there were a few moments in which there seemed to be some audio clipping… but I think that’s something that we experience less and less now with the art of film making becoming more refined (think how often you’ve seen a boom mike in the top of a shot in anything these days compared to content put out pre 2000 or so). The use of the soundscape varies somewhat with each feature and though not completely immersive it serves it’s purpose (a lot of the focus tends to be what’s directly ahead of the viewer so use of the full surround stage isn’t quite as important.
When it comes to extra features, Imprint should really be commended as the discs are loaded with bonus material. I find the person doing the interviews quite uncomfortable to watch… I’m not sure why she just gives me odd vibes (which I have no doubt I gave off in the one time I had a chance to interview someone over a project). For cinema buffs the director’s commentary can be quite enlightening.
A fantastic collection of films in a very commendable package. Grab it if you are a film buff or just enjoy some deeply moving cinema.
Director Roland Joffé
Region Coding B
TV Standard HD
Consumer Advice Moderate violence, Moderate coarse language
Year of Release 2022