Movie Reviews

DVD Review: “Notes on a Scandal”

(20th Century Fox. 2007. Color. Widescreen. 1 Disc. 92 Minutes. Rated R. Directed by Richard Eyre.) Judi Dench, Cate Blanchett, Bill Nighy. Music by Philip Glass.

Just a fantastic film. What starts as the story of a teacher (Blanchett, who looks ravishing) having an affair with a student, becomes an emotional free-for-all between two desperately lonely women. Dench plays a lonely old spinster who, in a complex game of cat-and-mouse, goes as far as blackmail and subterfuge in order to gain a friend, but is ultimately betrayed when she discovers that Blanchett’s interest isn’t as all-encompassing (how fitting that her character’s last name is Covett). Blanchett and Dench turn in two enthralling performances (both were nominated for Oscars), and Bill Nighy is no slouch himself as the cuckolded husband. The only real complaint I had was with the soundtrack in the first 10 minutes or so of the film. In the beginning, it was a bit heavy-handed and overwrought, giving seemingly mundane events an almost noir-ish tone. However, once the affair is revealed and the intrigue begins, the action on-screen catches up with the score and all is well. Special features on the disc include director’s commentary (the bits I sampled were pretty insightful), behind-the-scenes featurettes and webisodes (many of which recycled the same material), the theatrical trailer and a couple of interviews with the actors. If you’re in the market for a good, thrilling drama, I definitely recommend it.

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Jared Counts

Digital Technology Manager

Jared Counts moved to Houston in 1995, survived high school and college, and graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Houston with a degree in Communications (Media Production) and a minor in Film Studies. After being hired part-time at KUHF Radio in early 2003, he proceeded to bounce between...

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