Angel at My Table [Criterion Collection]

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aec.crrn1611dvd
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Synopsis

New Zealand poet Janet Frame is the subject of Jane Campion's biographical drama, which presents a poetically evocative look at the authoress' turbulent life. The film begins with a look at Frame's childhood, showing her as a bright but odd-looking, emotionally fragile young girl with a knack for writing. Frame faces great difficulty in adapting to the conventional rural life around her, and her social awkwardness only worsens as she grows older. After she fails in her attempt to become a schoolteacher due to an intense panic attack, she is subject to a psychiatric evaluation and shamefully misdiagnosed as a schizophrenic. Frame is subsequently committed to a mental institution, where she suffers years of unnecessary shock treatments and other horrors. Her salvation comes through her writings, however, which attract the attention of a renowned author who arranges her release. While the nightmare of Frame's institutionalization is presented with great sensitivity and power, Campion and screenwriter Laura Jones, to their credit, refuse to simplify her story to this one pivotal event. Instead, they pay equal attention to Frame's subsequent life, as she slowly adjusts life in the outside world, experiencing literary success and her first romance. Expressive visuals add immeasurably to the total effect, while Kerry Fox's superb performance creates a truly affecting portrait of Frame. Impressively, the film was originally made as a mini-series for New Zealand television, and slightly reedited for a later theatrical release. ~ Judd Blaise, Rovi

Product Details

Release Date
9/20/05 
Studio
Criterion
Length
158
Sound
  • Dolby Digital w/ sub-woofer channel
  • Dolby Digital Stereo
Region
  • USA & territories, Canada
Video Features
  • New, restored high-definition digital transfer, supervised by director of photography Stuart Dryburgh and approved by director Jane Campion
  • New Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack
  • Audio commentary featuring Campion, Dryburgh and actress Kerry Fox
  • A 10-minute documentary about the making of An Angel at My Table
  • 6 deleted scenes
  • My Say, an audio interview with Janet Frame from 1983
  • Original theatrical trailer
  • Stills gallery
  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • Plus a 40 page booklet
Number of Discs
1

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