‘The Nowhere Inn’ Blu-Ray Review – St. Vincent And Carrie Brownstein Deliver A Mind-Bending Mockumentary

From real-life friends Annie Clark (a.k.a. GRAMMY award-winning recording and touring artist St. Vincent) and Carrie Brownstein (Portlandia, Sleater-Kinney) comes the metafictional account of two creative forces banding together to make a documentary about St. Vincent’s music, touring life, and on-stage persona. But they quickly discover unpredictable forces lurking within the subject and filmmaker that threaten to derail the friendship, the project, and the duo’s creative lives.

For in-depth thoughts on The Nowhere Inn, please see my colleague Mike Vaughn’s review from its original theatrical release here.

Video Quality

The Nowhere Inn comes to Blu-Ray with a gorgeous AVC encoded 1080p transfer that showcases the look of the film really well. Where the transfer really shines is the impressive level of detail both in the costumes and the locations. Everything from the backstage interiors to the texture of the costumes is quite impressive. The cinematography features vibrant pops of color even with swaths of the movie taking place in a desert landscape. The costumes and concert lighting are where the movie provides its boldest colors. The picture is mostly clear with only brief instances of murkiness during a few darker scenes. Black levels are admirable but could stand to be a bit deeper. Skin tones are natural throughout with some impeccable details present in certain shots. Overall, this is quite a powerful transfer that should please fans. 

Audio Quality

The film comes with a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track that has quite a bit of depth and power throughout. For a film with numerous live performances from one of the most exciting musicians currently around, it is important that the music maintains a nice fidelity, and this track certainly succeeds in this respect. Environmental effects play a substantial role in the film, and this track brings these elements to life quite capably. The use of the rear channels to create a fully enveloping world works quite well. The directionality is quite precise so sounds always present as natural when coming from their respective points. Dialogue comes through crisp and clear without being overwhelmed by any of the other sounds. Activity in the low end is effective when it comes to the music but otherwise subtle and mostly used to add a bit of texture to some of the more kinetic moments. RLJE Films has delivered a great track for this film. 

Special Features

There are no special features provided on this disc. 

Final Thoughts

The Nowhere Inn is a really peculiar film that plays with genre in a fun way that keeps you guessing as to what is actually happening. The story loses its way some as it reaches the conclusion, but up until that point the meta humor really works. The film seems geared to appeal more to those who are already fans of Annie Clark/St. Vincent, which may account for why I responded more enthusiastically than some. There is infectious novelty to seeing Clark send up her persona and indulge in the weirdest tendencies that she usually channels into her stage show. RLJE Films has released a Blu-Ray featuring a terrific A/V presentation but nothing in the way of special features. If you are fan of St. Vincent or Carrie Brownstein, or just movies that have a bizarre sense of reality, give this one a shot. Recommended 

The Nowhere Inn is currently available to purchase on Blu-Ray and DVD.

Note: Images presented in this review are not reflective of the image quality of the Blu-Ray.

Disclaimer: RLJE Films has supplied a copy of this disc free of charge for review purposes. All opinions in this review are the honest reactions of the author.

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