Another Earth Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy
Taking a backseat to the wonder of finding a new planet in our solar system containing life Another Earth concentrates on the relationship of a young woman after her recklessness killed a wife and son.
Film making 16/25
Bonus Features 10/25
Another Earth stars Brit Marling as Rhoda Williams, a high school student just accepted to MIT but before she can attend her recklessness at a party finds her in jail. She drives away from the party after drinking and ends up running into another vehicle while she is looking up at the newly discovered planet in our solar system.
Rhodas four years in jail are over in a blink and we see her struggle as a newly released felon who can only get a job as a janitor at her old high school. She feels very bad about the accident and killing not only the mother and son but the unborn child of the mother and finds out about the father.
Due to Rhoda being a juvenile the father, John Burroughs played by William Mapother, does not know who she is and after he awakens from a coma has a hard time dealing with his loss. He was a successful composer but after the coma he is having a hard time just getting by and has problems that need a lot of medication.
Rhoda finds out who is he and tries to apologize one day after finding out where he lives but loses her nerve at the last minute after knocking on his door. When he comes to open it she comes up with the excuse that she is there as a free cleaning trial by a cleaning service.
She winds up cleaning his house, then falling in love with him only to tell him the truth later on after she wins a trip to the other Earth. She wins a contest run by a millionaire entrepreneur who does not want the first to meet the inhabitants of our sister planet to be NASA military astronauts but common citizens.
Another Earth is not about the chance of meeting your twin on the planet that somehow is exactly like our own down to the exact same people with the same names but about the relationship between Rhoda and John. With the improbability and even outright amazement at finding another Earth in our solar system the film instead concentrates on a relationship.
I can understand trying to focus on a more down to earth topic and using an amazing scientific discovery as a backdrop and timeline plot device but the story is also quite unbelievable. I could swallow the idea of Rhoda apologizing and then coming clean but they fall in love anyway when he sees how good she really is or how sorry, or whatever.
If she was so remorseful about what she did she doesn't seem to show it, I just don't buy how sorry she is and she never tells him until after they sleep together. I have an even harder time knowing that she came to his door and instead of running away in a panic when she tries to tell him she says she's there to clean his home.
The movie follows a premise that is just odd and gets even worse with them falling into bed and having such a normal relationship with the knowledge of her real reasons behind meeting him. Add to this the odd plot slant that the other planet in our solar system is an exact duplicate of ours down to duplicate people, they didn't even need this.
I could believe in a planet with other people similar to our own but when a representative from SETI tries to contact the other Earth she is answered by herself. The relationship and the fact that Rhoda wants desperately to redeem herself pales in comparison to the duplicate Earth and all its possibilities.
Another Earth has some very good acting with well-done performances by both Mapother and Marling but the story just went in the wrong directions too many times. I just wish the main plot had a little more real world honesty instead of the actors tripping into bed so quickly and on her part so easily.
Audio and Video quality are great which is a surprise from this low budget film but we do get a good release from the studio that is publishing the Blu-ray editions. The film was shot in 720p digital and with a simple upgrade to 1080p the video quality is good for such a low budget film.
I repeat this because the films budget was just $200,000 and with that kind of budget the film did pretty well from a quality standpoint. Audio is also well done with a DTS-HD Master Audio track with no major problems even though they used a lot of digital music for the film.
Another Earth did do very well at some film festivals and won awards like the Sundance Film Festival's Alfred P. Sloan's Prize. I feel this was mainly due to the depiction of a dramatic event with the backdrop of the film on a much larger discovery in our universe more than anything else.
Another Earth had some very short making of features and a few other bonus additions on the Blu-ray disc of the set I reviewed but it is not a lot of bonus content. There are five making of features but all are under five minutes and deleted scenes, a music video and the trailer for the film.
There is not much in the way of bonus features for the movie but the film just did not wow me with its dramatic backdrop of finding another world that is a mirror image either. Another Earth just left me wondering how many times are they going to stick with cliche plot devices like girl kills family and then sleeps with the husband/father.
I just think there were too many times they fell into the familiar and typical instead of striking out on their own, why did Rhoda have to sleep with him? Another Earth may be worth a rental but I just do not see this as worth a film collection addition at all.