All is True Blu Ray Review (Sony)
All Is True is a 2018 drama film produced & directed by Kenneth Branagh (Hamlet, Thor, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, & Murder on the Orient Express). It was written by Ben Elton (Upstart Crow, The Ben Elton Show, The Young Ones, & Alfresco). It was produced by Judy Hofflund (8MM, Panic Room, Stir of Echoes, & Murder on the Orient Express) & Matthew Jenkins (Death on the Nile, Artemis Fowl , Terminal, & Stratton). It explores the human story behind a dark & little known period in the life of William Shakespeare (played by: Kenneth Branagh from Macbeth, Othello, Henry V, & Dunkirk). The year is 1613 & the Romeo and Juliet scribe is the greatest writer of the age. However, when his beloved Globe Theatre is burned to the ground, he decides to return to his home town of Stratford-upon-Avon. He runs into people from his past like Henry Wriothesley / Earl of Southampton (played by: Ian McKellen from the X-Men franchise, The Lord of the Rings franchise, Apt Pupil, & Richard III). There, he faces his neglected family. Still haunted by the death of his only son, he struggles to mend broken relationships with his wife, Anne (played by: Judi Dench from the James Bond franchise, Henry V, Hamlet, & Shakespeare in Love) plus his daughters Judith (played by: Kathryn Wilder from Frontier, Adulting, Ready Player One, & Branagh Theatre Live: Romeo and Juliet) & Susanna (played by: Lydia Wilson from Ripper Street, Requiem, Flack, & Star Trek Beyond). He is forced to examine his own failings as an absent husband and father.
All Is True delivers when it comes to high quality cinema. The acting is phenomenal here, it’s no surprise when you see who’s in the cast for this. Kenneth Branagh has done a variety of projects from William Shakespeare in his long film career. You can tell this was a personal project for the respected actor & director. He plays the man himself who has inspired him all these years & he turns in one of his best performances in recent years. Both Ian McKellen & Judi Dench are top notch in All Is True. Just like Branagh, both actors have done so much material, theater, & projects from William Shakespeare during their legendary careers. Then again, you can say that for most actors out there right now or in the past. When it comes to the written word & dialogue, Shakespeare is one of the greatest writers of all time. Writer Ben Elton know a little about him considering he wrote for Upstart Crow so this was the perfect opportunity for him. His script is tragic, heart wrenching, very emotional, & a little dark when it comes to the last days of this known personality. The combination of the excellent cast & the brilliant script really boosted the overall production. Now after all that praise I must say, All Is True struggles with it’s pace at times & the flow is inconsistent here. This film is very boring at various moments but when it comes to the performances & dialogue it really shines. Honestly, it probably should have been edited down a little bit but everything else makes up for the rough spots in this. RECOMMENDED!!!!
Let’s talk about the high definition presentation from Sony Pictures! This 1080p (2.39:1) transfer looks top notch! The cinematography & locations stand out here. They captured this piece of time to the very last detail. It features two options for the audio which includes English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 & English: Audio Description Track 5.1 Dolby Digital on the release. As you would expect from a Shakespeare production, it’s loaded with dialogue. I am happy to report that everything is clean & crystal clear when it comes to that department. The music has a nice boost to it. It also has English & English SDH subtitles. This is a very satisfying release when it comes to Picture & Sound!