HTS Moderator , Reviewer
Title: Enough Said
HTS Overall Score:80
It’s always sad and sort of surreal watching a film where an actor has recently died and it’s just as sad and surreal watching one of my favorite character actors in his final film posthumously. James Gandolfini played many a role, but his most famous (or infamous depending on your point of view) role of Tony Saprano skyrocketed his mediocre career to stardom. Many times playing a brash and abrasive character, Jim plays the exact opposite type of role here in “Enough Said”. A soft spoken and laid back character, he is still able to bring that smile to my famous that was always there in his other roles. I wasn’t so sure how this particular film would affect me, being that Julia-Louis Dreyfus is normally one of the most annoying actors I have ever had the displeasure of seeing. I didn’t like her in “Seinfeld” and can’t stand her in her new show as well. Her over the top antics tend to rub me the wrong way and detract from the viewing. Luckily I gave this one a chance and came out really pleasantly surprised at a film that was actually nearly as good as the critical acclaim that has been garnering in theaters.
Eva (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) and Albert (James Gandolfini) are both divorcees who happen to meet at a party. In a freak announcement by her friend’s husband, Will, Eva is embarrassed by his spouting out that she doesn’t really find anyone attractive at the party, taking it in stride Albert jokingly responds back that he doesn’t either. Grudgingly admiring the other’s bluntness the two start to spark a strange and rather “rough around the edges” romance. Both people have been hurt by their previous marriages before and that’s kept them out of the dating pool for quite some time. As you can expect the couple start out distancing themselves from the other and then realizing the two work together quite well, despite their hang-ups. Spiraling to its inevitable conclusion, the relationship actually takes off and becomes serious.
Now, every rom-com needs a disastrous inciting incident that creates confusion and chaos, and that comes in the form of Marianne (Catherine Keener), another newcomer to that same fateful party. It appears that Marianne is in need of a massage therapist and that happens to be Eva’s job. Not only does Eva gain a new client, but a new friend as well. As with Eva, Marianne has been divorced and neither of the two can stand their respective ex’s. The only thing is, Marianne is Albert’s Ex (queue eyebrows raising and the ever common “oooooooooooooo!”). At first Eva doesn’t get the connection, but sooner or later she’s bound to figure it out. Upon realization, Eva doesn’t distance herself from one or the other, but tries to use Marianne as an unknowing source of information so that she can see what she’s actually getting into. As with the plans of mice and men, things most certainly go awry. Eva starts out just wanting to protect herself and find out if she and Albert are compatible, but sooner rather than later, Marianne’s constant bad mouthing and degradation of Albert starts to taint her judgment. The flaws that Marianne saw in Albert are at the forefront of Eva’s mind and they soon start to become HER issues as well, even issues that she didn’t care about before. This results in some rather awkward moments with Eva starting to turn into Marianne and frustrating Albert to no end. A secret like this can last only so long and sooner or later the truth surfaces which causes Albert and Eva to re-evaluate their basis for trust as well as look inside and see what they actually feel for one another.
There is certainly a fair share of Rom-Com cliché’s floating around and they do surface every now and then, especially in the supporting characters and their “advice” to the love torn victim. Even the relationship with Eva and her daughter felt a little canned some times, even though the situation is certainly relatable to most parents with children nearing that time where they start leaving the nest. With all that said the relationship between Albert and Eva is really the center of the focus, and the unique and raw aspect of it was both bitter and sweet at the same time. It’s completely relatable to us who’ve experienced life in both its good and bad forms, to see the couple a little gun shy and nervous at opening themselves up to someone after they’ve been trampled on by another that they trusted. Julia is actually rather restrained in her role as Eva and didn’t trigger my irritation hot spots as she usually does and the chemistry between herself and James Gandolfini was very homey and comfortable, without seeming strained or eye roll worthy. My only real complaints were dialogue related, and not actor related. Those minor grievances could have made the film from a really good one, to a really great film.
Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content, comic violence, language and partial nudity
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=14189[/img]“Enough Said” sports a fantastic looking 1.85:1 AVC transfer on Blu-ray, with a lush array of bright colors, with some soft pastels thrown in for good measure. The greens and blues especially stand out and give you the feeling of a lush and rich environment while the indoor scenes take on darker colors and give it a slight orange hue. The detail is absolutely fantastic, whether it be the salt and pepper bead of James Gandolfini or the age marks on the faces of Catherine Keener and Julia Louis-Dreyfus making my jaw hang down at some times. Black levels are absolutely perfect from beginning to end with no sign of black crush and allowing a wide array of detail to seep through those darker shots. There’s a few scenes where I noticed a softness, but it was only in a very select few scenes, mainly in the restaurant scene. There’s no sign of digital artifacting or compression artifacts and I can happily say the Blu-ray discs gives us a very healthy bitrate. Bravo, Fox, Bravo.
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=14190[/img]The audio track is a bit more laid back, considering that we’re looking at a very dialogue centric film. The surrounds are used mildly, and when they are used it’s for some incredible accurate directional sounds, such as car doors slamming in the distance, a gate closing, or the sounds of the restaurant seeping through above the chatter. The dialogue is excellent and suited to the genre, with crisp vocals and nice dynamic range. There’s a little bit of LFE strewn throughout the movie, but it’s mostly relegated to a door thudding shut or the score, there’s not much that’s going to rattle your pant leg. While the audio is a bit laid back, it’s still very well done, considering we’re looking at a front heavy style of film here. It does the job well and I have no actually complaints directed towards it.
• Second Takes
• Promotional Featurettes
• Theatrical Trailer
“Enough Said” got a lot of critical acclaim, and I was wondering just HOW good the film actually is (rom-com’s aren’t exactly a genre filled with tons of award winning titles). Surprisingly to me I ended up enjoying the film even more than my wife did. The two co-stars have a sort of rough and weathered chemistry that really highlights the pain and fear that goes into a relationship after you’ve been burned in a previous one that lasted as long as theirs did. The hesitancy and awkwardness fit the story like a glove and actually became quite endearing. While not AS good as the critical acclaim heralded it as, I still thought it was a very sweet and enjoyable experience and don’t hesitate to recommend a watch.
Starring: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, James Gandolfini
Directed by: Nicole Holofcener
Written by: Nicole Holofcener
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 AVC
Audio: English: DTS-HD MA 5.1, French DTS 5.1, Spanish DD 5.1
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Blu-Ray Release Date: January 14th, 2014
Buy Enough Said Blu-ray on Amazon
Recommendation: Watch It
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