Fulvue Drive-In.com
Current Reviews
In Stores Soon
In Stores Now
DVD Reviews, SACD Reviews Essays Interviews Contact Us Meet the Staff
An Explanation of Our Rating System Search  
Category:    Home > Reviews > Drama > Biography > Biopic > Children's Television > Family > Melodrama > Comedy > British TV > Documentar > A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood 4K (4K Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray)/Frankie (Blu-ray/both Sony 2019)/Good Karma Hospital: Series 3 (2019/Acorn Blu-rays)/Is Anybody Listening? (2020/IndiePix DVD)/Ji

A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood 4K (4K Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray)/Frankie (Blu-ray/both Sony 2019)/Good Karma Hospital: Series 3 (2019/Acorn Blu-rays)/Is Anybody Listening? (2020/IndiePix DVD)/Jim Allison: Breakthrough (2019/Giant DVD)

4K Ultra HD Picture: A Picture: B+/B/B/C/C+ Sound: A & B+/B/B/C+/C+ Extras: B/C+/C+/C-/C- Main Programs: B/C+/C/B-/B

The following releases are documentaries, docudramas or honest takes on life we do not seem to see enough...

Mr. Fred Rogers was truly an American icon even beyond the realms of pop culture. A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood (2019) is a biopic about him was inevitable after his death a few years ago, and especially in the wake of a successful 2018 documentary Won't You Be My Neighbor. Oscar-nominated for his performance here, Tom Hanks plays the role of Fred Rogers perfectly in this big screen adaptation that's inspired by an article "Can You Say... Hero?"; by Tom Junod and based on a true story.

The film also stars Matthew Rhys, Enrico Colantoni, Susan Kelechi Watson, and Chris Cooper.

Mr Rogers Neighborhood was a Pittsburgh-based children's television host who delights the world and brings warmth to children and adults alike, made at the first-ever U.S. public television network, WQED, it became a national hit and classic. This was before PBS had changed its name from NET. Lloyd Vogel (Rhys), an investigative journalist from New York, gets an important assignment to write for an article about Mr Rogers and is initially skeptic. However, after meeting and getting to know Rogers more intimately, discovers a softer side of himself that he didn't think still existed.

A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood is presented in 2160p HEVC/H.265, HDR (10; Ultra HD Premium)-enhanced Ultra High Definition image on 4K UHD disc with a widescreen aspect ratio of 1.85:1 and some 1.33:1 with a great sounding, lossless DTS:X Master Audio 11.1 track and also boasts IMAX enhancement. The narrative of the film is very nicely photographed here and works as a nice contrast to the reenactments of the Mr. Rogers Neighborhood TV Show Program, which the production went as far as using the same cameras to pull off. Also on the disc is a sound mix in DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) lossless 7.1 (48kHz, 24-bit), which includes is a lesser 1080p Blu-ray disc with similar visual and audio specs. A digital copy is also included.

Special Features include:

Filmmaker's feature-length audio commentary track

Over 15 Minutes of Additional Scenes

Blooper Reel

Tom Hanks as Fred Rogers

The People Who Make a Neighborhood: The Making Of

Dreaming Big, Building Small: The Puppets & Miniatures

and Daniel Tiger Explains: Practice Makes Perfect

Ira Sachs' Frankie (2019) is the kind of film we used to see all the time, character-driven, simple, to the point, smart and well-written, frankly the world of the now-blacklisted Woody Allen and other such mature writer/directors who have been cast aside for soulless digitally-plastered blockbusters. This may not be the best film of its kind, but it has some great actors, nice scenes and ambition, which is more than I can say for most major releases of late.

French acting icon Isabelle Huppert (Heaven's Gate) is the title character, an actress living in a beautiful part of Portugal (this is shot on location very effectively) dealing with her family, an acting friend (the great Marissa Tomei) is going to visit, but all kinds of things are already going on with her friends and family, plus, she has a few things on her mind. Brendan Gleeson is here in rare form as her husband, Greg Kinnear comes along with Tomei's actress unbeknownst to Frankie and the rest of the cast is as solid, including Jeremie Rennier, Pascal Gregory, Vinette Robinson and more. If this is your kind of film and you feel like you have not seen one or enough like it lately, than this is for you to try out. For the most part, you will not be disappointed.

The 1080p 1.66 X 1 digital High Definition image is an HD shoot with nice color and composition throughout, taking advantage of the location shooting and is one of the nicest HD shoots you'll see to date on the naturalism level, while the DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mix is dialogue-heavy, but well recorded and mixed. A trailer and Q&A with Huppert and Sachs are the extras.

Good Karma Hospital: Series 3 (2019) continues to be a hit and in the same mode we found it in its previous season when we covered it on Blu-ray at this link:


Instead of being challenging like St. Elsewhere or melodramatic like E.R. or overly serious like U.S. and U.K. medical TV shows of the 1950s and 1960s, it is a more pleasant series with fairly good character development that is not character-study rich, but fits the world established early on. There is also relationship involvement as the medical cases come in, but it is just not my kind of show. The actors really carry it as a result, so if interested, start with the debut season and see if you get this far.

The 1080p 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer of the HD-shot series is as smooth and solid as the previous seasons, though it is not too memorable or has much in the way of memorable shots, while the DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mix is professional and competent, sometimes reserved, but nothing unusual or out of the ordinary. Extras include previews for other Acorn releases and 17-minutes Behind-The-Scenes featurette.

One of the worst things happening in the U.S. is how badly since the Vietnam-era we have been treating war veterans, including many who keep trying to say we could have 'won' Vietnam and all the way to a President who disrespects those who served while doing everything he could to avoid doing so himself. Why no one has been able to correct this is a real problem, even after 9/11, so Paula J. Caplan also had a father who served. A writer and psychologist, even she had to ask why her father had not told her more about his life and experiences.

As she looked into things, she discovered these decades of abuse has caused people who finished their service to not even want to talk or feel no one would hear them or understand the impact besides PTSD or other upsets. This has resulted in a short but important, impressive documentary entitled Is Anybody Listening? (2020) where she discovers how disturbingly widespread this certain kind of loneliness and isolation is.

Though this issue has been addressed several times before and comes up in horrible news stories of abused and neglected veterans, homeless veterans and the failure of the government to keep their obligations to those who delivered time and again, risking their lives and not getting anywhere near the thanks they deserve. Caplan has created a key program that can help correct that and let's hope it is not the last one. This is definitely worth your time.

The anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image can be rough as the real life footage is lower-def digital, et al, but is as good as can be expected, while the surprise lossless PCM 2.0 Stereo sound is as good as it can get, with only some location audio issues. A paper piece in the DVD case for more information is the only extra.

Last but not least, narrated by Woody Harrelson, Bill Haney's Jim Allison: Breakthrough (2019) is the story of how a young man's life experience and curiosity led him to tackle the ever-horrid disease of cancer and actually come up with an honest, authentic treatment that works for many people and opened up a new branch of science. The biography portion is thorough, but then we get the science part and how long and varied the hunt for answers was and still is, with one big pharmaceutical giant giving up early, others and established medical researchers coming to conclusions that did not ring true for Allison and the amazing outcome that more people should know about and so many have benefitted from already.

I was skeptical of this when I first heard of it because occasionally, we get offered titles that are speculative, corny, exploitive and politically motivated in the worst way, but this was NOT one of them and I highly recommend it.

The anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image has some older footage, home movie film, video and stills, but looks pretty good overall with the majority new digitally-shot footage, while the lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 is fine enough to hear everyone talking with occasional music. A trailer is the only extra.

- Nicholas Sheffo and James Lockhart (4K)



 Copyright © MMIII through MMX fulvuedrive-in.com