Written by: Michael Den Boer on January 6th, 2011
Theatrical Release Date: USA, 2010
Director: Devon Reed
Writer: Devon Reed
Cast: David Fine, Big Spence, Devon Reed, Joe Mandragona, Meghan Kane, Elizabeth Marsh, Clive Worsley, Matthew Magennis, Tiffany Conroy, Seana Baruth, Damian Lanahan-Kalish, Rachel Wagstaff, Ken Holloway, Ryan Bowler, Ward Abronski, Lorraine Reed
BluRay released: 2010
Approximate running time: 84 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Widescreen / 1080 Progressive
Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo English
BluRay Release: bigtopmovie.com
Region Coding: Region Free
Retail Price: $39.97
Synopsis: A young man named Vincent O’Malley joins the circus to get away from his oppressive father.
The Bigtop is a drama / musical hybrid that was written and directed by Devon Reed, who also appears in the film in the role of Vincent O’Malley. He also composed all the musical numbers which appear in the film. And when it came time to put together the film’s soundtrack Devon Reed assembled an impressive list of Rock Indie artists. Most notably Matthew Sweet.
At the center of this film is a story about a young man, who dreams are being smothered by his father. After a violent confrontation with his father. He decides to leave home and find a place where he belongs. One day his path crosses with a circus and by accident he is incorporated into the show. The audience ends up enjoying his performance and the owner of the circus hires him. For the first time he feels like he fits in somewhere. After awhile the circus starts to rely on him more. This new found confidence ends up being his downfall. To complicate matters he sets his eyes on a female trapeze performer, who also happens to have caught the attention of the rest of men working at the circus. From their his obsession with this woman leads him down a dangerous road which mirrors the oppression that he was trying to escape at the beginning of the film.
The simplistic plot lends itself perfectly to the film’s numerous musical numbers. In fact the majority of Vincent O’Malley’s dialog is told through song. From a production standpoint the colorful visuals supply plenty of eye candy, the film is briskly paced and all the performances are all very good. Without a doubt the most enjoyable aspect of this film are its musical numbers. When all is said and done, The Bigtop is a whimsical tale about the dangers of obsession.
The Bigtop comes on a 25 GB (12.8 GB to be exact) single layer BluRay. The film is presented in a 1080 progressive anamorphic widescreen. Colors and flesh tones look accurate and black levels look very good throughout. It should be noted that there is DNR that varies in degree throughout this transfer. For the most part it is never too intrusive.
This release comes with one audio option, a Dolby Digital stereo mix in English. The audio is in great shape as everything sounds clean, clear and consistent throughout.
This release comes with no extra content. Overall The Bigtop gets a good audio / video presentation.
Note: This film is also available on DVD and the films soundtrack is available on CD.
Here is the track listing for the soundtrack.
1. Magic – performed by Lisa Germano
2. Your Song – performed by The Clientele
3. I Only Want the Sky – performed by Michael Leviton
4. Ashes – performed by Damien Jurado
5. Wild – performed by Matthew Sweet – listen
6. The Girl Who’s Above Us – performed by Tullycraft
7. Falling in Love – performed by Howe Gelb
8. I Just Can’t Keep Up – performed by The Owls
9. Way to Walk – performed by Communique
10. Something, Nothing, Everything – performed by Marbles
11. Planning My Escape – performed by Eleventh Dream Day
12. Cracked and Crazed – performed by Doug Martsch
13. Patience – performed by The Sprite