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Another Earth (Two-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo + Digital Copy)
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DVD + Blu-ray + Digital
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Rhoda Williams, a bright young woman accepted into MIT's astrophysics program, aspires to explore the cosmos. A brilliant composer, John Burroughs, has just reached the pinnacle of his profession and is about to have a second child with his loving wife. On the eve of the discovery of a duplicate Earth, tragedy strikes and the lives of these strangers become irrevocably intertwined. Estranged from the world and the selves they once knew, the two outsiders begin an unlikely love affair and reawaken to life. But when one is presented with the chance of a lifetime opportunity to travel to the other Earth and embrace an alternative reality, which new life will they choose?
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of them--True Grit (2010) or Toy Story 3 (2010) for example. But there is a special place in my column for
those rare finds. I call them “The Best Movies You Haven’t Seen.” Some films in this eclectic mix include
It’s Kind of a Funny Story (2010), about a boy who checks himself into a psychiatric hospital only to find
he’s not that bad off, City Island (2009), about a prison guard lying to his family about his acting
aspirations, and his family lying about everything else; and Me and Orson Wells (2008), about a young
man taken under the wing of the Hollywood underdog/legend. Add another one, namely Another Earth,
to that list.
What is it about these movies that are really exciting? Well, mainly they’re made on a lower budget than
most Hollywood films. In fact, most of them aren’t really Hollywood but rather the Hollywood studios’
independent features arm—namely a branch of the big studios that acknowledges (but mainly doesn’t
want to pay for the production of) great projects among the not-so-elite filmmakers’ club.
Have I stalled long enough? Well, there’s a reason for my hesitating to tell you much about Another
Earth. Frankly, the plot is so well constructed and executed that to even share the premise might ruin it.
I can tell you that the subplot of the film is cause for what you might read about its being in the science
fiction genre—but don’t be tricked by that tag. Yes, there is that subplot of another earth identical to
ours appearing in the sky. Some would argue that you could strip that subplot out and still have a great
story. I disagree. In fact, that small facet of the story--beautifully pictured as another earth that hangs in
the sky like a great, big full moon but with blue--is both integral to the plot but a minor character
simultaneously. Does that make sense? Does it need to? This film was a big winner at Sundance this year
taking two feature film prizes!
The film was co-written and stars Brit Marling, a relatively unknown, completely talented actress/writer.
I had the pleasure of attending a sneak preview in Philadelphia where Ms. Marling was a guest along
with director/co-writer Mike Cahill. Mike said he would consider bringing the film to Cape May (you bet I
asked him!), so fingers crossed. This is a film about regrets, redemption—it’s beautifully told, brilliantly
acted, and remarkably filmed.
The narration is inobtrusive yet thought provoking and well paced. The events are simple yet convincing and logical. The actions of heros is very convincing and true, as is the acting. The brilliant play of Brit Marling is so good, it is not noticeable: the character totally takes over the actress and one cannot imagine anything she says or does could be said or done differently. William Mapother play is solid and thorough; both of them slide through the movie almost like a pair of ballet dancers, where the male dancer is that foundation allowing the ballerina to shine.
The director work is exceptional hands down. Brit and Mike really make a good team - maybe more than that. each shot is paced; each action is placed right; each camera motion just adds to the point (oh yeah, the exquisite cinematography present thoughout)
Oh year, did I mention it is a low budget move? Ha! Fat Hollywood has a place to learn.