Sarah’s Key (Blu-ray)

January 28, 2012 4 Min Read

Review by: Fusion3600

Plot: What’s it about?

Julia Jarmond (Kristin Scott Thomas) is a journalist in Paris assigned to cover the anniversary of a tragic event, the 1942 Vel’ d’Hiv Roundup. This brutal incident was undertaken by the French police on orders from the Nazis, as part of the German plan to reduce France’s Jewish population. Over 13.000 people were arrested and transported to concentration camps, in one of World War II’s darkest moments. Julia’s assignment leads her to uncover some unexpected information, facts that point toward a secret within her own marriage. Her husband Bertrand (Frederic Pierrot) has a connection to the event, as his family’s apartment seems to be linked to a horrific turn of events. A secret that has been hidden for decades, the truth is known by a young girl (Melusine Mayance), but what does it all mean for Julia and Bertrand?

This is a good movie, with a haunting premise, but sadly, the film doesn’t live up to the full potential. While that premise is great, Sarah’s Key veers off the main path too often. I do think some of the diversionary plot points were interesting, but none were as potent as the core concept. So with a little more focus, perhaps Sarah’s Key could have fully developed the primary story and delivered a remarkable experience. The film still works and has some great moments, but I can’t help but think about how much better Sarah’s Key could have been. Kristin Scott Thomas is superb in the lead and commands the screen, but the writing is inconsistent, which hinders her performance. Thomas is an elite level talent and she could have taken Sarah’s Key to the next level, but we’re still left with quite a memorable effort. So Sarah’s Key might not be the best film it could have been, but it is still a solid and sometimes powerful experience.

Video: How does it look?

Sarah’s Key is presented in 2.35:1 widescreen. This is a good looking transfer, even if it never quite reaches the level of the best ones out there. The visuals are clean and clear, with a good amount of detail at all times. The depth is impressive at times, so you will know you’re watching high definition content. I found colors to be bright and natural, while contrast is smooth and accurate, no concerns in either of those areas. The image could be a little more refined, but overall this transfer looks great and fans should be satisfied.

Audio: How does it sound?

The film might not be audio dynamite, but this DTS HD 5.1 sounds good. The music is simply excellent in this mix, with a full and expansive presence. The music is by far the most memorable part of the audio and it really enhances the film, so I am glad it sounds so rich here. The dialogue is crystal clear, never lost in the shuffle, while sound effects have a natural presence. So the front channels handle the bulk of the work, but the movie still sounds just fine. This disc also includes subtitles in English and Spanish.

Supplements: What are the extras?

The lone extra is a promotional featurette.

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