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Category:    Home > Reviews > Documentary > Special Interests > Icons > Religion > Mana – Beyond Belief (Genius DVD)

Mana – Beyond Belief


Picture: C+     Sound: C+     Extras: C     Feature: C+



Where does the line between the glorious and banal break down?  In many places as the Peter Friedman/Roger Manley film Mana – Beyond Belief (2005) shows.  We have seen films from directors like Godfrey Reggio and Ron Fricke with interesting editing, juxtapositions and shooting worldwide.  The duo went to five continents for this one, ranging from Elvis impersonators to religious icons to other kinds of icons.  So what does it all mean?


In this case, that we all get focused on something, making what is sacred or important a matter of personal concern.  Dogmatic types will instantly find this a problem, but they have lots of others, though I found this film to be one too many trips to the well for this kind of non-narrative work.


This runs 95 minutes, which seems longer than it should, but you might want to give it a look to see what you think.


The anamorphically enhanced 1.85 X 1 image is a little softer than expected, but is not bad.  However, I bet this looks sharper on HD or film, something we will have to look into later.  The Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo has weak surrounds at best and is not up to the better films of its kind.  Extras include text bios of the team that made this, but that is all.


We have at least looked at Fricke’s work and you can read about it at the following links; titles you might want to see before Mana so you can judge it better:






Chronos (HD-DVD with Blu-ray version up soon)




-   Nicholas Sheffo


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