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

A UH alum, Jared Counts was hired part-time at KUHF Radio in early 2003, bouncing between departments until being hired full-time as a web developer in Febraury 2007. He currently manages the front- and back-end of this website (including the WordPress plugin that runs this staff directory), as well as...

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