Room in Rome on Blu-ray – The DVDfever Review

Room in Rome

The title, Room in Rome, sets the scene for the sole location in this film where two women are seen from the balcony, standing outside after having an evening out and wondering how to make it end. It’s the last night in Rome for the two who have just met: short, Spanish girl, Alba (Elena Anaya) and statuesque Russian, Natasha (Natasha Yarovenko).

It’s the night before the first day of summer and after a short amount of time they end up in bed, despite it being Natasha’s first time with a woman. Before long, Alba falls asleep and Natasha makes her silent goodbyes… but she finds a reason to return…

If I was to say that they spend time talking about past experiences in their lives, looking up where each other lives on Google Earth, discussing the artwork on the walls of the hotel room, and having breakfast, it’d sound incredibly boring, but I found it mostly encapsulating. It’s brilliantly written and acted as you watch the two of them spend most of the time in the buff, chatting about the inconsequential things in life and also some serious moments. Are they in lust or in love? And what if one is in love more than the other?

Oh, and they also have a shower and a bath together as well.



Room In Rome‘s small cast is rounded out by Enrico Lo Verso as Max, who delivers room service (seriously, that’s not a euphemism) and Najwa Nimri as Edurne, whose significance will show up later in the film.

Without giving anything away plot-wise, the last scene is of the area in Rome via Google Earth, or whatever the Bing equivalent is. How do we know it’s Bing? Because of a bloody onscreen logo and a “(C) 2009 Microsoft” logo on opposite sides of the screen. Christ on a bike, Optimum, is that what things have come to? Way to kill the atmosphere of the final scene! It’s a movie, not a panel show on Dave(!)

Product placement is one thing you expect in movies, fine, but the end credits is where you expect the appropriate ‘with thanks’… not killing the mood before the film’s finished. That is REALLY something I do NOT want to see again!

Thinking back on this, that still irks me, since whereas the final scene should be something that lingers in the mind, and it could’ve been the wonderful end to a wonderful movie, it really lingers like when you get a stitch in your side after running for a bit and wondering when it’ll go away.



Presented in the original 2.35:1 theatrical ratio and in 1080p high definition, the picture is sharp and detailed with no problems whatsoever. That said, you’re mostly looking at an exquisitely-decorated hotel bedroom.

As for the sound, this is in DTS 5.1 HD Master Audio, or DTS 5.1 for those, like me, without the full technical dohickey. It’s mostly used for dialogue and ambience, with occasional musical interludes.

The sole extra is a trailer (1:59), cropped to 1.85:1. It gives clips of the film out of context so doesn’t really spoil anything.

The menu mixes clips of the couple in the bath with a short piece of the theme, Russian Red’s cover of Loving Strangers. With the dialogue being spoken in
English, but with some Russian, Spanish and Italian, there are subtitles in English. The chaptering is lazy with just 12 over the 108-minute running time. There’s also trailers, from Optimum – and even an advert – that you can’t skip past or pause! Optimum, just pack this in, please, and put them in the EXTRAS part of the disc!

Oh, and did I mention the onscreen logo during the final scene?


FILM CONTENT
PICTURE QUALITY
SOUND QUALITY
EXTRAS
8
9
7
1
OVERALL 6


Detailed specs:

Cert:
Running time: 108 minutes
Year: 2010
Distributor: Optimum
Cat no: OPTBD1872R0
Released: October 2010
Chapters: 12
Picture: 1080p High Definition
Sound: DTS 5.1 HD Master Audio
Languages: English
Subtitles: English
Widescreen: 2.35:1 (Super 35)
Disc Format: BD50

Director: Julio Medem
Producers: Julio Medem and Alvaro Longoria
Screenplay: Julio Medem
Music: Jocelyn Pook

Cast:
Alba: Elena Anaya
Natasha: Natasha Yarovenko
Max: Enrico Lo Verso
Edurne: Najwa Nimri

Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.
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