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Tell No One(2006)
Pediatrician Alexandre Beck still grieves the murder of his beloved wife, Margot, eight years earlier. When two bodies are found near the scene of the crime, the police reopen the case and Alex becomes a suspect again. The mystery deepens when Alex receives an anonymous e-mail with a link to a video clip that seems to suggest Margot is somehow still alive and a message to "Tell No One."
For more about Tell No One and the Tell No One Blu-ray release, see Tell No One Blu-ray Review published by Kenneth Brown on April 2, 2009 where this Blu-ray release scored 3.5 out of 5.
Starring: François Cluzet, Marie-Josée Croze, Kristin Scott Thomas, Nathalie Baye, Marina Hands, Gilles Lellouche
Director: Guillaume Canet
» See full cast & crew
Tell No One Blu-ray Review
A smartly-penned, wonderfully-acted cinematic labyrinth...
Reviewed by Kenneth Brown, April 2, 2009
Best judged after two full viewings, director Guillaume Canet's acclaimed, mind-bending French thriller, Tell No One, won over audiences the world over with its slick and slippery screenplay, impressed critics with a series of nuanced performances, and found its way onto several notable 2008 Top Ten lists. While I can't say I was as instantly taken with its occasionally overwhelming, densely packed story as other people were -- my first trip through the film left me unsure of what to think or feel -- I found myself warming to its wiles after settling in for another go. By the time I wound my way through it again, I was a convert. This time I was able to concentrate on the characters more than the film's central mystery, soaking up their every word and expression instead of searching for answers. More importantly, I was finally able to sit back and enjoy Canet's Hitchcockian subtleties without growing weary of his maddening sleight-of-hand.
Based on the 2002 American novel of the same name by author Harlan Coben, Tell No One opens as two longtime lovers -- a pediatrician named Alex Beck (François Cluzet) and his beloved wife Margot (Marie-Josée Croze) -- visit the French countryside for a romantic getaway. Everything is just as Alex hoped it would be... until Margot is viciously murdered in the middle of the night. Knocked unconscious before he could identify their assailant, Alex is initially suspected of the crime but ultimately released when a serial killer is captured and charged with her death. Flash forward eight years. Alex still thinks of his wife every day and hasn't pursued a serious relationship with any other woman. While his sister Anne (Marina Hands) and her spirited wife Hélène (Kristin Scott Thomas) encourage him to let go of his painful memories, he quietly languishes in unresolved grief and refuses to forget his one true love. But when a mysterious e-mail and a shocking security video leave him confused and confounded, he embarks on a dangerous quest to discover what really happened to Margot that fateful night.
If Tell No One has any debilitating weakness, it's that looking away from the screen at the wrong second can leave you scrambling to keep up with the third act's breakneck plotting and elaborate revelations. I suspect more casual cinephiles will give up the moment its methodical premise begins vomiting countless twists and turns, sometimes seemingly at random. No exaggeration... there were times I felt as if I needed a flow chart, a calculator, and a compass just to track who did what to whom, why they did what they did, and who decided to cover it all up. Unfortunately, anyone who succumbs to these frustrations will miss out on an intelligent, tightly-written psychological thriller that understands how to weave a mesmerizing mystery and take its audience by complete surprise. It certainly helps that Canet's perfectly-cast actors have an undeniable grasp on their characters and motivations. Cluzet, in particular, grounds the film's every thundering left hook in the reality of Alex's undying devotion and unrelenting fear; he masterfully transforms his screentime into a riveting performance that will keep you going even when the plot threatens to leave you behind.
Therein lies the appeal of Tell No One. Despite the wildly winding paths of its story, its characters emerge as something all too familiar: human beings embroiled in very tangible trials and turmoil. It doesn't matter that the endgame is a bit too convoluted for its own good, nor does it matter that I could think of a dozen ways the real culprit/culprits could have avoided the whole mess had he/she/they taken some time to devise a better plan. All that matters is that I continually forgot I was watching a group of actors and started to feel genuinely invested in Alex and his plight. I wouldn't recommend Tell No One to anyone who doesn't have the patience to plow through it all at least two times, but I can assure anyone who does that the film's brilliant performances, sharp script, and stirring developments won't soon be forgotten.
Tell No One Blu-ray, Video Quality
Tell No One features a lovely 1080p/VC-1 transfer that renders cinematographer Christophe Offenstein's absorbing shadows and sun-drenched palette with meticulous care. Colors are warm and inviting, skintones are impeccable, contrast is bright and stoic, and the image boasts a filmic depth that many of the industry's heavily-processed presentations don't often exhibit. Compared to its standard DVD counterpart, the Blu-ray edition is as much a welcome revelation as the story's conclusion -- it doesn't suffer from any distracting artifacts, crush, banding, or edge enhancement. And detail? The transfer's detail is extraordinary. Not only are its fine textures natural and refined, but its overall foreground and background clarity elevates it above other high profile releases. In fact, aside from some minor digital noise that appears in a handful of nighttime sequences, I didn't encounter any technical issue that might detract from its otherwise gorgeous appearance. I'm sure some people will complain about the occasional soft shot or errant print imperfection, but I didn't have any serious complaints... even after watching the film twice. By my estimation, the encoders at MPI have outdone themselves with this high quality transfer. Foreign film enthusiasts and video junkies of all stripes will be quite pleased with the results.
Tell No One Blu-ray, Audio Quality
It may look amazing, but the Blu-ray edition of Tell No One will also probably induce its fair share of flashbacks to those dastardly 2007 Blu-ray releases that required viewers to choose between standard surround tracks and lossless stereo mixes. While the region-free French import features uncompressed PCM 5.1 audio, MPI's domestic release splits the difference and forces viewers to either go with a regular Dolby Digital 5.1 surround track or a lossless PCM stereo mix. Thankfully, the film itself is, more often than not, a quiet, atmospheric affair that sounds pretty good regardless of which option you select. As you might expect, the 5.1 track provides an immersive soundfield, noteworthy LFE support, and more convincing ambient presence, while the PCM mix produces somewhat crisper, refined effects and dialogue. Each one delivers precise prioritization, decent dynamics, stable treble tones, and smooth channel pans. In the end, my biggest gripe here is that filmfans and audiophiles have been denied the best of both worlds.
Tell No One Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
Offering fewer special features than the aforementioned region-free French Blu-ray import, MPI's Tell No One nevertheless includes a fairly extensive supplemental package, especially for a domestically released foreign film. It even bests the Region 1 DVD version by adding in an exclusive hour-long documentary. Ultimately, the only real downside here is that all of the video content is presented in standard definition.
Tell No One Blu-ray, Overall Score and Recommendation
Tell No One is an oft-times stunning, emotionally-draining French thriller whose performances and screenplay make it worth multiple viewings. The Blu-ray edition is an unexpected treat as well. While it doesn't include a lossless surround track, its audio mixes are relatively strong, its video transfer is one of the better presentations I've seen this year, and its supplemental package is quite thorough for a domestically released foreign film. All things considered, you should give Tell No One a shot... you might be as pleasantly surprised as I was.
Tell No One: Other Editions
Tell No One Blu-ray, News and Updates
• Tell No One Extras Detailed - February 6, 2009
MPI Media Group has announced the extras for the upcoming Blu-ray release of 'Tell No One', which is due to hit store shelves on March 31st, day-and-date with the DVD release. Technical specs have not been revealed at this time. Extras include deleted scenes, outtakes, ...
Tell No One Blu-ray Screenshots
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