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Category:    Home > Reviews > Comedy > Drama > Marriage > Relationships > Serious Moonlight (2009/Magnolia Blu-ray)

Serious Moonlight (2009/Magnolia Blu-ray)


Picture: B-     Sound: B-     Extras: C     Film: C



Adrienne Shelly was a fine character actress who was horrifically killed in a botched robbery of her apartment.  Before she left us, she also wrote and directed works behind the camera, including the terrific, underrated Waitress (reviewed elsewhere on this site) co-starring Keri Russell and Cheryl Hines.  Hines has taken on directing a script Shelly left behind and the result is Serious Moonlight (2009), with Meg Ryan and Timothy Hutton.


They play a married couple who are about to hit a rough spot.  They have been together for over a dozen years and she is a very successful lawyer.  He announces that he is leaving her for a younger woman (Kristin Bell) and decides to tie him up and not let him go until she can figure something out.  Making things wilder are the gardener (Justin Long) decides to take advantage of the volatile situation.


The problem is that the final result is feature that does not know if it is a comedy, drama or something else.  Perhaps it Shelly had lived to direct it, it could have worked or reflected her intent, but here, Hines does her best to interpret and it is nothing we have not seen in many past dysfunctional comedies.  Nor it is as good as its predecessors or brings anything new to the table.  It is finished as tribute to Shelly, but just never gels.


The 1080p 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image is on the soft side and likely an HD shoot.  Director of Photography Nancy Schreiber, A.S.C., does a decent job of shooting this, but it is on the flat, disappointing and unmemorable side, though this might not have been the best chance for her to show her work.  The DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mix is dialogue-based, sometimes compressed and not that impressive, combining with the picture in underwhelming ways.  Extras include a feature-length audio commentary tracks by Hines & Producers Andy Ostroy & Michael Roiff, a making of featurette and HDNet special on the film.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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