Aug 052012
 

4.3.2.1 isn’t a bad movie by any stretch. There are few interesting scenes but as a whole, there’s not nearly enough story that held my interest to go along with characters that are unlikeable. The Blu-ray offers up a fine picture and audio qualities but the solo feature isn’t anything special.

 

 

 


4.3.2.1 (2011)


REVIEW NAVIGATION

The Movie
| Special Features | Video Quality | Audio Quality | Overall

 

Genre(s): Drama, Crime
Universal | NR – 117 min. – $26.98 | July 31, 2012

MOVIE INFO:
Directed by:
Noel Clark & Mark Davis
Writer(s):
Noel Clark (written by)
Cast:
Emma Roberts, Tamsin Egerton, Ophelia Lovibond, Shanika Warren-Markland, Helen McCrory, Sean Pertwee, Michelle Ryan, Eve, Mandy Patinkin, Kevin Smith

DISC INFO:
Features:
Featurette
Number of Discs:
1

Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 5.1)
Video:
1080p/Widescreen 2.35
Subtitles:
English SDH, French, Spanish
Disc Size:
29.7 GB
Codec:
MPEG-4 AVC
Region(s):
A

 


THE MOVIE – 2.5/5

4.3.2.1 is the latest crime-drama from actor/writer Noel Clarke, who helmed the well-regarded dramas, Kidulthood and its sequel, Adulthood. The movie was released overseas in 2010 but never saw a release Stateside which isn’t surprising as a fair number of British films don’t receive theatrical releases, though if it did, I couldn’t see it being well received…

This is one of those multi-character stories where we follow one through the course of three days, rewind and do it all again with another character; it’s not unlike Vantage Point and can get old real quick. However, there is something entertaining about it even if the film doesn’t exactly deserve another viewing.

The story is about four girl friends: low self-esteemed Shannon (OPHELIA LOVIBOND), hot lesbian rebel Kerrys (SHANIKA WARREN-MARKLAND), overworked/person-pleaser Joanne (EMMA ROBERTS) and hottie rich piano protégé Cassandra (TAMSIN EGERTON). The movie chronicles each of their experiences over the course of 3 days with the heist of blood diamonds as the backdrop which causes chaos in each of their lives.

Shannon’s life is in turmoil after her parents announced they were separating. Her father is in a near comatose state while her mother is running off with a younger man. She tries to explain the situation in a letter left in Shannon’s purse but thanks to mix-up earlier, the letter lands in one of her friends’ purses instead. She spends time trying to get in contact with each one to retrieve the letter but it seems everyone is blowing her off.

Kerrys is a lesbian, much to the displeasure of her family, and she has her own daddy issues. She spends some quality time with her girlfriend (LINZEY COCKER), with some saucy foreplay to titillate the audience, while also butting heads with her asshole step-brother who makes her life a living hell… and vice versa.

Joanne is chained down at her convenience store job and takes extra shifts for her sister who has met a new guy and wants time to spend with him. The overnight shift involves working with a jackass boss with a power complex but also leads to an inside job robbery and a car crashing through the front entrance.

And finally Cassandra takes a trip to New York City to audition for a world renowned piano instructor (MANDY PATINKIN) as well as meet a man she’s only chatted online with and whom she wants to lose her virginity with. Of course, not everything goes as planned. The guy shows up at her hotel door, they “do it” but he drugs her and upon waking up, she’s robbed of all her belongings.

All four stories culminate on the third day as all the pieces come into focus but there’s little mystery of what’s going on. Still, I’d be fine with the lack of suspense but when you have characters that aren’t that likeable, Kerrys’ especially, it makes for a movie that is tough to get through. However, even MORE unlikeable are the adults that inhabit this world.

You’ve got parents, save for one anyway, who are utter pricks. For instance, Shannon’s mum leaves her and her father for a younger man and when confronted, she hardly comforts her daughter and for all intent and purpose, blames her for why she was in the marriage for as long as she was. Real classy. It all adds up to annoying, even obnoxious, characters put into outrageous situations that are hardly original nor worse yet, entertaining.

Performances wise, the four leads aren’t too bad and seem to share some nice chemistry despite being basically a part for large portions of the film. The one I think stands out is Ophelia Lovibond (Mr. Popper’s Penguins, London Boulevard), though she has the advantage since this is more or less her film. Her filmography is limited yet she has the potential to do good work and although 4.3.2.1 won’t rank high on her list, she’s at least one of the few reasons the movie works at all.

The movie was written and co-directed, along with Mark Davis, by Noel Clarke (he also has a prominent role) who previously wrote the popular UK dramas, Kidulthood and the sequel Adulthood. I haven’t seen either of those movies so I can’t really compare, but in here, it’s a nice and glossy looking movie with some nice production values but style over substance doesn’t cut it.

The most apt comparison for this movie is the 1999 mutli-story insane thriller, GO, but this is much more of a poor substitution than anything. 4.3.2.1 isn’t a bad movie just one that’s uninspiring; the performances are merely OK but the story strung together is obvious and holds little suspense, humor or general interest.

SPECIAL FEATURES – 1.75/5

This release comes with a matted, slightly titled embossed, slip cover.

The Making of 4.3.2.1 (22:19) is a well made but still fairly generic ‘making-of’ featurette where cast and crew members talk about the plot, their characters and such. There’s some behind-the-scenes footage to go along with the comments but otherwise it’s pretty forgettable.


VIDEO – 3.75/5

Universal Studios releases 4.3.2.1 on Blu-ray with a fine looking if not unremarkable 1080p high-definition transfer. The movie is presented in its original 2.35 widescreen aspect ratio and while it’s well detailed in places, it’s nothing that really pops off the screen. The black levels look good, though yet some scenes weren’t as sharp as I expected from a new release. Still, it’s a decent transfer.

AUDIO – 4.25/5

The 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track comes across a bit better. Even though a fair amount of the movie is dialogue driven, there are a few scenes which allow this lossless track to come to life. There are a couple party scenes with thumping music which gets the LFE channel going and the dialogue levels are nice and clear throughout. Again, it’s nothing earth, or window, shattering but it gets the job done.



OVERALL – 2.25/5

Overall, 4.3.2.1 isn’t a bad movie by any stretch. There are few interesting scenes but as a whole, there’s not nearly enough story that held my interest to go along with characters that are unlikeable. The Blu-ray offers up a fine picture and audio qualities but the solo feature isn’t anything special.

 

Brian Oliver, The Movieman
Published:
08/05/2012

 

 

Check out some more screen caps by going to page 2. Please note, these do contain spoilers.

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