DVD Talk
Release List Reviews Shop Newsletter Forum DVD Giveaways Blu-Ray Advertise
Reviews & Columns
Reviews
DVD
TV on DVD
Blu-ray
International DVDs
Theatrical
Adult
Video Games

Features
Collector Series DVDs
Easter Egg Database
Interviews
DVD Talk Radio
Feature Articles

Columns
Anime Talk
XCritic.com
DVD Stalk
DVD Savant
High-Def Revolution
Silent DVD

discussion forum
DVD Talk Forum
Resources
DVD Price Search
Customer Service #'s
RCE Info
Links

DVDTalk Info
Review Staff
About DVD Talk
Advertise
Newsletter Subscribe
Join DVD Talk Forum
DVD Talk Feeds


Special Offer

Search: For:
Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Breasts: A Documentary
Breasts: A Documentary
First Run Features // Unrated // March 21, 2006
List Price: $19.95 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Stuart Galbraith IV | posted March 22, 2006 | E-mail the Author
Buy from Amazon.com
C O N T E N T
V I D E O
A U D I O
E X T R A S
R E P L A Y
A D V I C E
Recommended
E - M A I L
this review to a friend
P R I N T
Printer Friendly
Breasts - A Documentary (1996) is a terrific 50-minute film for both men and women, consisting of mostly disrobed women of all shapes, sizes and ages talking about their breasts. Men will be drawn into the "inside look" nature of the program which is highly educational yet very entertaining, while women will be endlessly fascinated by both shared experiences and the widely varied attitudes woman have about their breasts.

The straightforward show is neatly divided into sections which discuss everything from puberty to the inevitable effects of age and gravity, from breast-feeding to breasts as objects of desire. Interspersed throughout is intriguing and often very funny archive footage: risque cartoons from the silent era, sex education films from the 1950s, bra commercials from the '60s - there's even a trailer for Lolita (1962).

The 22 women (and their 41 breasts) range in age from six to 84 with most disarmingly frank talking about matters as trivial as the nicknames they and their spouses give the woman's breasts, to more serious matters such as feelings of inadequacy because they believe their breasts to be too small (or, sometimes, too big). Two mother-daughter pairs are especially interesting talking about generational differences, and both sets are enthusiastic and perceptive.

The film is mostly great fun, but it also sensitively addresses the issue of silicone implants. Made soon after the Dow / silicone implant scandal, looking back at Breasts ten years after it was made it's interesting how the film has become a kind of record of the fear many women were experiencing at the time, walking around with these potential time bombs. The DVD cries out for updates here - what happened to the women who got these implants? Were they removed? Did their health improve or get worse?

Near the end, the film also addresses breast cancer and mastectomies, and the dialogue is riveting and informative. For this sequence alone Breasts is a must-see.

Video & Audio

Originally made for cable television, Breasts - A Documentary is presented in its original full frame format. Unfortunately, the image is, inexplicably, quite bad, looking like an especially bad PAL transfer with harsh horizontal lines breaking up the image that it's like viewing it through pebbled glass. Conversely, the stereo soundtrack is just great, with much separation and clarity accorded to the show's great soundtrack by John M. Davis, Ananda and Rehana Ellis. The program has no alternate audio or subtitle options.

Extra Features

Supplements include about 27 minutes of Deleted Scenes which are nearly as entertaining as the footage that made the final cut.

An above average Interview with Filmmakers Meema Spadola and Thom Powers runs 10 minutes. Original Music from Breasts is a welcome CD-style extra containing the entire soundtrack, while Filmmaker Bios offers brief text about Spadola and Powers.

Parting Thoughts

During the interview, Spadola aptly describes the project as "stealth feminism," a film whose title attracted men expecting something sexy whose initial disappointment quickly gave way to rapt attention about a subject they knew nothing about. Women, meanwhile, will be amused and perhaps find comfort in these women's stories. Only the truly disappointing transfer stops this short of being Highly Recommended.

Stuart Galbraith IV is a Kyoto-based film historian whose work includes The Emperor and the Wolf - The Lives and Films of Akira Kurosawa and Toshiro Mifune and Taschen's forthcoming Cinema Nippon. Visit Stuart's Cine Blogarama here.

Popular Reviews
1. Halloween: The Complete Collection - Limited Deluxe Edition
2. Transformers: Age of Extinction
3. Grace Kelly Collection (Dial M for Murder, To Catch a Thief, Magombo, The Country Girl, The Bridges of Toko-Ri, High Society)
4. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre: 40th Anniversary Collector's Edition
5. Dragon Ball Z: Season 7
6. Jarhead 2: Field of Fire - Unrated Edition
7. Ghost in the Shell: 25th Anniversary Edition
8. Grizzly
9. Moms Night Out
10. Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Season 1


Special Offers
DVD Blowouts
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
Alien [Blu-ray]
Buy: $19.99 $9.99
8.
9.
10.
Special Offers
Release List Reviews Shop Newsletter Forum DVD Giveaways Blu-Ray Advertise
Copyright 2014 DVDTalk.com All Rights Reserved. Legal Info, Privacy Policy, Terms of Use