dvd / blu-ray Review

Jackie (DVD) : Review


Following one of history’s most notable moments, the assassination of President John F. Kennedy (Caspar Phillipson), First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy (Natalie Portman – Thor: The Dark World) fights through unfathomable grief and trauma to regain her faith, console her young children, and define her husband’s historic legacy.

Portman is the total embodiment of Jackie Kennedy. A performance that garnered her an Oscar nomination. She not only puts forth an incredible performance, but she becomes the character she is portraying. No easy feat, given how closely the world watched in the hours and days following the death of JFK, and the conspiracy theories that followed.

As a film, Jackie feels ever so slightly self-indulgent at times, and given that the total focus of Jackie Kennedy at that time, was that of herself, her late husband, and family, it is totally understandable. As she goes through each moment of grief, the viewer is plunged into these deep waters along with her, with little pause to ponder what one might do in such a situation, where given the privacy an average person would expect, Jackie herself was in the world’s spotlight. But, she stands fast, showing strength, and orchestrating each moment, so that only the most ideal persona, and image of elegance, might be gazed upon by others.

Jackie is a film that finds the middle ground between art-house and commercial cinema, yet in so doing, makes it appealing to a great number, from those who lived during the time of these unfortunate events, to those who know of them merely from the history books and archive footage shown on television.

An engrossing film, with a vast amount of talent in the cast, and presentation, Jackie is top notch and is sure to be enjoyed by all.

See the SAMDB video, with interview with Natalie Portman, from Jackie.


Overall, the disc is of a good quality technically, but devoid of any additional material.

Jackie is available now, to purchase on disc, in South Africa.


Video is encoded at a high average bitrate. There are no visible artefacts on screen, nor any visible colour bleed. Colours are vibrant, while maintaining detail in darker scenes.

The trailers included on the disc are compressed to a degree where compression artefacts are visible on-screen, but their smaller file size would mean more space for the main feature, and therefore less compression on that.

Similar compression artefacts are visible on the discs menus, but again, this would mean more storage space, allowing less compression to be used on the main feature.

Viewers with the necessary hardware or software could scale up to a larger or higher resolution screen, should they wish.


Sound is presented in a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack, with a stereo 2.0 downmix alternate track.

Dialogue is mostly clear via the centre speaker, with only one or two areas where the combination of accent, and accompanying music make it a bit difficult to follow the conversation.

The weight of the soundtrack is carried via the front channels, with the surround channels serving merely to help draw the viewer further into the story. The less frequent use of these channels makes sense, given the genre of the film.


Navigation on the disc is simple, and easy to follow.

The main menu is a static menu, with text links to play the main feature, or select scenes. There is a static menu background, with accompanying music.

The scenes sub-menus comprise of four colour, static thumbnails. While these are numbered, they are not labelled, meaning some guesswork is required in order to navigate to a specific part of the main film.

Bonus Features

There are no bonus features on the disc, except for trailers for The Sense of an Ending, Lego Star Wars Force Awakens, and Die Rebellie van Lafras Verwy.

These trailers can be both skipped and fast-forwarded individually, but can not be accessed again via the disc menu.


By Andrew Germishuys

Founder of SAMDB, Andrew has worked full time in the film industry since the early 2000's. He has trained as an actor, completing his LAMDA Gold Medal, and attending many courses in Cape Town acting studios, with masterclasses with some of the international industries top directors, producers and filmmakers.

Working as an actor and armourer in the film and television industry have given Andrew a great balance of skills across the board when it comes to the entertainment industry.

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