Love Affair

January 28, 2012 6 Min Read

Review by: Fusion3600

Plot: What’s it about?

A remake of a remake. Interesting. It seems quite sad and maybe the timing was poor, but just a year before this movie was the hit Sleepless in Seattle. In it, we found Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan (in one of her strings of romantic comedies) searching for true love and to hopefully find one another. A big part of that movie was based on an earlier movie, An Affair To Remember starring the one and only Cary Grant. Billed as a chick movie (both of them), the main memorable part was that the lovers were to meet on top of the Empire State Building on Valentine’s Day. Awww…how cute. I’ve never been to the top of the Empire State Building on Valentine’s Day, but I’m sure there are plenty of people who have and will continue to do this ritual until the end of time. That being said, we are here watching the great Warren Beatty and his new love (at the time) Annette Benning. Beatty, a proverbial Hollywood powerhouse, decided to remake the movie and use his real-life love interest as his on screen love interest. That also being said, if you’ve ever seen any of the previous incarnations of the movie, you know what will happen. Or do you?

We first meet Mike Gambril (Warren Beatty) as his life story is being splashed all over the media shows of the day. He is an ex-football star of the Rams and has made more of a reputation for himself running around and chasing women than of his life as a professional athlete (Gee…how ever did Warren Beatty make the stretch to play that part)?!? He is engaged to be married to the host of a very popular talk show host and it’s rumored that she is worth in excess of 100 million dollars. Yet he still can’t keep from playing around with the ladies. On a trip to Sydney, Australia, he meets a young woman by the name of Terry McKay (Annette Benning). The plane was forced to make an emergency landing on an atoll and the crew of the flight had to pick one of three ships to get to their destinations. As it turns out, Mike and Terry end up on the same ship together and Mike really starts putting the moves on her. Both are engaged to be married, but to test if their feelings are that true, they decide to break it off and meet on top of the Empire State Building on Valentine’s Day. Naturally, if the meet, then they really love each other and so on…

As far as remakes go, this is about average. The cast is great, with a special appearance by four-time Academy Award Winning actress, Kathleen Hepburn as Mike’s Aunt Ginny. Hepburn, even in her later years can still act circles around two very good actors (Beatty and Benning). Pierce Brosnan, before he was James Bond, plays Terry’s fiance and look for an appearance by Kate Capshaw (Mrs. Stephen Spielberg) and Harold Ramis. With all of this going for it, and the screenplay was even written by Warren Beatty and Robert Towne (who wrote Chinatown), Love Affair seems to fall flat. I don’t know why, but sometimes even the most well-oiled machines just don’t run. It’s a good movie, but you’re better off with one of the "originals" here.

Video: How does it look?

Love Affair is shown in an anamorphic 1.85:1 transfer that could use a little work. First of all, my main complaint was that the picture was very soft. It’s like the movie was shot through tissue paper. I know Beatty and Hepburn are getting on in their years, but was this necessary to make them look younger? This being said, there isn’t much of a problem with edge enhancement, but the whole image looked wrong for some reason. The movie is also very dark in spaces, almost so much that you can’t make out what is what and look for any source of light to make the characters out. Some artifacting was present, but in some scenes the level of detail was very good. It is anamorphic, which is always a plus, but I’d hate to see the movie in any other form as I think it would be most unwatchable.

Audio: How does it sound?

I could have told you right out of the box that this would not be a movie that would rely heavily on the audio and I think I would have been right. The Dolby Digital 5.0 soundtrack is average at best. Mostly a dialogue-driven movie, Love Affair does have a very good jazzy soundtrack to go along with it. At times, the soundtrack does make use of it’s channels, but for the most part, it uses the front three extensively. While not a disc that you want to demo your system with, this gets the job done. Plain and simple.

Supplements: What are the extras?

There are some very brief cast bios and a trailer presented in anamorphic widescreen.

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