- “Brandon (Michael Fassbender) is a 30-something man living comfortably in New York balancing a busy job and active social life. When the wayward Sissy (Carey Mulligan), turns up at his apartment unannounced, Brandon’s carefully managed lifestyle spirals out of control. From award winning director Steve McQueen (Hunger), Shame is a compelling and timely examination of the nature of need, how we live our lives and the experiences that shape us.“
I’m not sure how politically correct it is to say that I was excited to see Fassbender’s man-tube on Blu-ray. Directed by Steve McQueen (who is neither a fashion designer or the guy from the Great Escape) Shame comes out this week on Blu-ray thanks to Alliance (Ed. note: …and Sony in the US of A.) It’s an unflinching character study of a man with desires. Lots and lots of desires. This was one of my favorite movies of the year so I was definitely psyched to get my hands on this disc.
Its looks great, its sounds great, it is great. Harry Escott‘s emotional and nuanced score is stellar. It is so well suited to the film, particularly in the delicate scenes, for instance, in those moments of lingering, longing eye contact between Fassbender and a stranger on the subway – one of my favourite scenes in any film I’ve seen this past year. The characters just eat each other with their eyes for several minutes with nary a word shared between them. Oooph.
With a theme as juicy as sex addiction I was hoping for special features that explored the topic in depth, rather than just a few short interviews with Fassbender and co-star Carey Mulligan. Thankfully, the beautifully shot film is more than enough to make this …ahem…package worth while, excellently transferred and encoded here in 1080p. The release comes in the now-standard Blu-ray and DVD combo configuration. French subtitles are available on the feature but not on the extras. It doesn’t really matter that the 3 minute mini-interviews lack subs but those who don’t speak English won’t find it easy to understand the half-hour Q&A, filmed live after a screening of the film.
Pick up this film on Blu-ray. You may not feel great about yourself if you don’t. Dare I say, you should be ashamed of yourself if this beauty doesn’t find a home on your shelf.
(Ed. note: Really bad pun, Chris. But I’ve left it in your review anyway, just to prove to our readers the kind of bad pun-maker you are.)
(Additional Ed. note: Chris reviewed the Canadian version of the Blu-ray disc from Alliance. The US version features an identical transfer but a vastly different special feature set. All in all, however, the featurettes and interviews on the Sony version amount to less than 20-minutes of content, far less than the extras Alliance provides. Completists on both sides of the 49th parallel might want to pick up both versions.)
- Q&A with Michael Fassbender
- Interview with Michael Fassbender
- Interview with Carey Mulligan