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KIT KITTREDGE:
AN AMERICAN GIRL

In all honesty, when I sat down to watch the "G" Rated KIT KITTREDGE: AN AMERICAN GIRL ($36) for the first time, I wasnít sure if Iíd be ripping the disc out of my Blu-ray player and tossing it out of my window long before the film reached its end credits. However, the film features a terrific cast of seasoned actors, who got me interested in watching KIT KITTREDGE: AN AMERICAN GIRL from the opening credits and they helped keep me glued to the screen until the final credit roll. Another thing I liked about KIT KITTREDGE: AN AMERICAN GIRL is the fact that it harkens back to a more innocent type of movie storytelling, yet it does it incredibly well, without ever seeming corny or saccharine.

Set during the depression era, the film introduces the audience to ten-year old Kit Kittredge (Abigail Breslin), who dreams of someday being a reporter, but first has to deal with the financial hardships affecting the other families in her community, and eventually her own. When her father Jack Kittredge (Chris O'Donnell) loses his car dealership and is unable to pay the mortgage on the family home, he heads to Chicago to search for work, which leaves her mother Margaret (Julia Ormond) to try to keep them afloat by taking in a few boarders.

During the familyís transition, we learn the local community has been struck by a series of robberies that are attributed to ever-growing number of hobos that reside on the outskirts of town. As a burgeoning reporter, Kit puts together a story on the plight of hobos, and at the same time, befriends parentless Will (Max Thieriot) and Countee (Willow Smith), who have been living in the hobo camp. Things take an even more dramatic turn, when Kitís household fall victim to a robbery and her new friend becomes the chief suspect. The excellent cast of KIT KITTREDGE: AN AMERICAN GIRL also features Jane Krakowski, Wallace Shawn, Glenne Headly, Zach Mills, Kenneth Welsh, Madison Davenport, Joan Cusack, Dylan Smith, Stanley Tucci, Douglas Nyback, Dylan Roberts, Martin Doyle and Colin Mochrie.

New Line Home Entertainment has made KIT KITTREDGE: AN AMERICAN GIRL available on Blu-ray Disc in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio presentation that has been encoded onto the disc with the VC-1 codec. The 1080p presentation is nice, but nowhere nears as nice as the movie itself. I would image that the period setting and nostalgic stylings of the cinematography are the reason that the movie appears a little soft and uninspired in high definition. Colors have an antiqued quality, which prevents them from appearing wholly natural. Blacks and whites are fairly accurate, but contrast and shadow detail are a bit lacking. Now, I certainly donít want to give the impression that KIT KITTREDGE: AN AMERICAN GIRL looks bad on Blu-ray, just that this title is far removed from demonstration material. The elements from which KIT KITTREDGE: AN AMERICAN GIRL have been mastered appear quite clean. Film grain is fairly minimal.

KIT KITTREDGE: AN AMERICAN GIRL is presented on Blu-ray Disc with a 5.1 channel Dolby Digital 640kbps soundtrack. As KIT KITTREDGE: AN AMERICAN GIRL is primarily a talky drama, the sound design isn't particularly aggressive. There are moments when the outlying channels engage for a few active effects, but for the most part, the material doesnít require much beyond good dialogue and music reproduction. The majority of sonic activity is localized to the front; however, the surrounds do supply the usual complement of ambient sounds and musical fill. By the very nature of the material, the bass channel doesnít have much to do. Dialogue is cleanly reproduced and is always easy to understand. No other language tracks have been included on the disc, but English subtitles are provided.

The interactive menus allow one access to the standard scene selection and set up features, as well as an American Girl Trailer Gallery and a Digital Copy of the film.

Thanks to its talented cast and thoughtful storytelling, KIT KITTREDGE: AN AMERICAN GIRL proves itself to be a highly entertaining family film that actually can entertain the entire family, regardless of age. The Blu-ray presentation is serviceable, but does not show off the capabilities of high definition.

 

KIT KITTREDGE: AN AMERICAN GIRL 


Kit Kittredge: An American Girl (+ Digital Copy) [Blu-ray] (2008)

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DVD & Blu-rayDisc reviews are Copyright © 2008 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.


 

 

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