Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Wine & DVD - Marquis Philips Sarah's Blend & "Charulata"

Marquis Philips Sarah's Blend 2006 - a blend of Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot clocking in at 15% alcohol (no wonder I was a bit loopy!). Rich, full of delicious dark fruit. Even at that level of alcohol, it was still smooth and very succulent. Great QPR. We got it on sale for $11.99 per bottle and bought a case.

"Charulata" - (in black & white) released in 1964 and set in 1870's India, it's about a young wife (Charu) whose husband is too concerned with his newspaper to give her any consideration. Her loneliness is evident and he asks his brother (in-law?) to keep her company. Can you say "love triangle"?

I have several problems, not with the movie itself, but with the production:
The DVD looked like it was copied from a poor quality videotape
The contrast was super-high making watching the film difficult, especially with subtitles
The subtitles seemed to be a poor translation of what the characters were saying. At times the subtitles lingered far too long, at other times they moved too quickly.
The sound quality was pretty bad (pops, static, etc)
As the movie progressed, the picture got darker and darker, making it difficult to distinguish who was speaking.

So it's impossible to give a good review of the film itself since we were so distracted by the poor quality.

But...we DID see a terrific Bollywood film the previous night - "Saawariya", another love triangle theme. Released in 2007, this was the first Bollywood film to be produced and released by a Hollywood production company (Columbia TriStar), and the first Indian/Bollywood film to be released on BluRay disc.

The scenes were lavish - gorgeous cinematography, rich colors. Based on Dostoevsky's "White Nights", it was a story about Ranbir Raj who meets the lovely Sakina who is waiting for the return of Imaan. The acting was wonderful, the singing and dancing were great, the costumes...wow! This film was a visual feast. I enjoyed it so much I'd like to purchase the BluRay disc so I can watch it again (and again).