Lovely & Amazing

( 3 )

Overview

Nicole Holofcener's sophomore directorial effort, Lovely & Amazing, comes to DVD with a widescreen transfer that preserves the original theatrical aspect ratio of the film. The English soundtrack is rendered in Dolby Digital 5.1. English, and Spanish subtitles are accessible. Supplemental materials include interviews with the cast and crew divided into four different sections concerning the genesis of the film, the casting, the filming, and lastly, a section in which the actors shower each other with ...
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Overview

Nicole Holofcener's sophomore directorial effort, Lovely & Amazing, comes to DVD with a widescreen transfer that preserves the original theatrical aspect ratio of the film. The English soundtrack is rendered in Dolby Digital 5.1. English, and Spanish subtitles are accessible. Supplemental materials include interviews with the cast and crew divided into four different sections concerning the genesis of the film, the casting, the filming, and lastly, a section in which the actors shower each other with admiration. This little-seen film deserves a larger audience, and this Lion's Gate "Signature Series" release should help.
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Special Features

Closed Caption; Cast & crew interviews; 16 x 9 widescreen; English and Spanish subtitles; 5.1 Dolby Digital
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Gregory Baird
It's like mother, like daughter when it comes to low self-esteem in Lovely and Amazing, a beautifully self-assured ensemble comedy-drama from director Nicole Holofcener. A slice-of-life character study set in Los Angeles, Lovely and Amazing follows a few weeks in the lives of a single, middle-aged woman Brenda Blethyn, her two grown daughters Emily Mortimer and Catherine Keener, and her adopted pre-teen daughter Raven Goodwin. The four grapple with insecurities about their looks, talents, and relationships, finding tentative solutions as varied as liposuction, marital infidelity, binges at McDonald's, and the adoption of stray dogs. While these plot developments provide sparks of tension, Lovely and Amazing deftly avoids melodrama. Instead, it works in pastel shades, revealing through the small but telling moments of everyday life the deeper fears and dissatisfactions that lurk beneath. In the end, Lovely and Amazing provides no big answers, just a few small reminders that a little dysfunction is par for the relationship course, and a little neurosis may not be such a crime after all. It's this quiet undertone of optimism and self-acceptance that makes Lovely and Amazing a thoroughly charming and gently reassuring family portrait.
All Movie Guide - Josh Ralske
Fans of Nicole Holofcener's wry urban comedy Walking and Talking will be ready for the emotional honesty and observational wit of her follow-up, Lovely & Amazing, but they may not be prepared for the film's nearly relentless downbeat tone. Not that Walking and Talking didn't have its painful and awkward moments, but it was feel-good escapism by comparison. As in the earlier film, Holofcener has assembled a gifted ensemble of actors, led by Catherine Keener. Adding their considerable talents are Brenda Blethyn, Jake Gyllenhaal, and James LeGros. Holofcener has also cast a refreshingly naturalistic child actor, Raven Goodwin, as the adopted young daughter, the troubled Annie. As exemplified by her character, Holofcener is exploring more wide-ranging themes here than the enjoyable navel-gazing of her debut. Delving boldly and uncompromisingly into issues of race and body image, Holofcener manages to find the mordant humor in a lot of unpleasant situations. Michelle isn't nearly as self-aware or likeable as the character Keener played in Walking and Talking. She's an edgy, sarcastic, self-involved oddball, and manages to undergo a little growth over the course of the film. Highlights of Lovely & Amazing include a memorably creepy, sad, and funny scene in which the self-critical Elizabeth (Emily Mortimer) stands naked before Kevin McCabe (Dermot Mulroney), a successful actor whom she barely knows, and demands that he give her a completely honest critique of her body. There's the moment when Annie expresses her wish to "tear off" her skin, in order to be more like her adoptive mother. There's an acute honesty to these and other, similar scenes which many will find off-putting. The dysfunctional Marks family does grow a little closer as the film progresses, and the film's honesty, humor, and engaging performances make the uncomfortable subject matter easier to bear.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/9/2003
  • UPC: 031398849629
  • Original Release: 2001
  • Rating:

  • Source: Lions Gate
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Language: English
  • Time: 1:31:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 75,912

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Catherine Keener Michelle Marks
Brenda Blethyn Jane Marks
Emily Mortimer Elizabeth Marks
Raven Goodwin Annie Marks
Jake Gyllenhaal Jordan
Dermot Mulroney Kevin McCabe
James LeGros Paul
Clark Gregg Bill
Aunjanue Ellis Loraine
Michael Nouri Dr. Crane
Technical Credits
Nicole Holofcener Director, Screenwriter
Anthony Bregman Producer
Eric d'Arbeloff Producer
Robert Frazen Editor
Ted Hope Producer
Jason Kliot Executive Producer
Craig Richey Score Composer
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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Posing [4:47]
2. Flabby Arms [3:27]
3. Confidants [3:02]
4. Promises [3:44]
5. Lip Service [3:41]
6. Bathtime [2:50]
7. Surgery [4:10]
8. Floating [3:34]
9. Broken Chair [3:32]
10. Comfort [2:49]
11. Artist [3:09]
12. Agent [3:07]
13. Waking Up [3:54]
14. A Little Help [2:33]
15. Developments [3:27]
16. Flirtation [4:21]
17. Afterglow [5:17]
18. Little Sister [4:01]
19. Just Friends [5:58]
20. Stray [2:35]
21. Missing [5:02]
22. Understanding [4:12]
23. Come Together [4:21]
24. End Credits [3:26]
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Menu

Side #1 --
   Play Movie
   Scene Index
   Special Features
      Trailer
      Interviews
         Getting It Going
         Playing the Part
         Making It Work
         Enjoying Each Other
   Subtitles
      English: On/Off
      Spanish: On/Off
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    “Lovely and Amazing” shows an interesting view into a family of women.

    This is the second film that writer/director Nicole Holofcener has made, and I think that she has succeeded very well in making a highly original film with very interesting characters. Some people feel that the dialog is very good, although on occasion it felt a bit off to me. The story doesn't really go much of anywhere, but that's not really the point of a film like this. The acting in this movie was uniformly very good among the women. “Lovely and Amazing” documents several days in the life of a mother and her three daughters. The mother, Jane (Brenda Blethyn), is in the midst of a mid-life crisis and decides to service herself through a liposuction treatment. As she is going through with the procedure, she asks her daughter Michelle (Catherine Keener) to take care of her younger, adopted sister Annie (Raven Goodwin). Michelle is a house-wife/artist who becomes so enthralled in her work of home-made miniature chairs that she asks ridiculous prices for them before storming out of stores at their disapproval. The third sister, Elizabeth (Emily Mortimer), is rescuing homeless dogs in between visits to her agent. Having just completed her roll in a Hollywood film, Elizabeth does her best to stay a humanitarian en route to what she wants to be success. Eventually, all four women's problems are projected in full effect. Jake Gyllenhaal reprises his role as the adolescent roué who somehow ends up bedding Catherine Keener (just like Jennifer Aniston in "The Good Girl"). He is perfectly cast with his dark, sultry looks, and wild puppy eyes. Raven Goodwin played her part naturally well and shined on every scene. She is clearly a very talented actress and I’ve notice recently a lot of child actors on screen are really getting better in their roles. Finally we have Aunjanue Ellis who I believe is one of the most underrated African-American females on the screen today who has dramatize her role just as well as the rest of the cast, she seriously needs to have bigger parts to show off her full abilities. The men in the film have smaller roles because this is a film about (but not exclusively for) women. They include Jane's cosmetic surgeon, Michelle's husband, Elizabeth's boyfriend, Kevin McCabe (a star who Elizabeth reads for a part with, played by Dermot Mulroney). "Lovely & Amazing" is a crazy entertaining movie. It has everything, liposuction, statutory rape, fast food, show business, and possibly rabies. Director Nicole Holefcener apparently had a lot to say and I quite enjoyed it. If you’re a fan of any of these actors, then I would recommend this movie to you.

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    Posted May 7, 2010

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    Posted April 8, 2011

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews