|Category||Thriller||Theatrical Trailer(s)||Yes, 1 - 1.78:1 non-16x9, Dolby Digital 2.0|
|Year Released||1998||Commentary Tracks||Yes, 1 - Harold Becker (Director)|
|Running Time||106:51 minutes||Other Extras||Featurette, Making Of - Watch the "Mercury Rising" (37:48)
Deleted Scenes (8:41)
Production Photographs - 49
Cast & Crew Biographies
Universal Web Links
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||MPEG||None|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||2.35:1||Dolby Digital||5.1|
|16x9 Enhancement||Yes||Soundtrack Languages
|English (Dolby Digital 5.1, 384Kb/s)|
|English (Dolby Digital 5.1, 384Kb/s)
German (Dolby Digital 5.1, 384Kb/s)
French (Dolby Digital 5.1, 384Kb/s)
Italian (Dolby Digital 5.1, 384Kb/s)
Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1, 384Kb/s)
Czech (Dolby Digital 2.0 , 192Kb/s)
Hungarian (Dolby Digital 2.0 , 192Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary (Dolby Digital 2.0 , 192Kb/s)
|Theatrical Aspect Ratio||2.35:1||
|English for the Hearing Impaired||Annoying Product Placement||Yes, one very annoying scene|
|English for the Hearing Impaired
The boy escapes execution by apparently escaping, but his parents do not.
Art Jeffries (Bruce Willis) is an FBI agent who is assigned to look into the escape of Simon. He finds Simon, and gradually discovers that this is no simple murder-suicide.
The strength of this piece is in the quality of its characterizations (except for Alec Baldwin). You can overlook the technical implausibilities and the odd gaping plot hole because the characters are all so believable. For once in a movie, the special effects act to enhance the drama of the piece rather than being the centerpiece of the movie.
This is an excellent transfer, and falls just shy of reference quality.
The transfer is presented at an aspect ratio of 2.35:1. It is 16x9 enhanced.
The transfer was very sharp and very clear at all times. Shadow detail was excellent, and there was no low level noise apparent.
The colours were unusually rendered, with quite a harsh steely blue appearance throughout the majority of the movie. This is offset by the odd splash of vibrant colour, such as in the street carnival scene.
There were no MPEG artefacts seen. The only film-to-video artefact that I noticed was some aliasing during a few of the shots of venetian blinds and other similar objects which shimmered in a minor fashion. There was perhaps a little more of this artefact than I would have liked, and I have marked this transfer down slightly because of this. Film artefacts went unnoticed.
Subtitles can be selected via the remote control, and all subtitles are available via the remote, no matter what Region the DVD player is set to. The subtitle menu, however, is dependent on which Region the DVD player is set to.
This disc is an RSDL disc, with the layer change placed during Chapter 22, at 69:53. Unlike most layer changes, this one is very well placed and causes minimal disruption to the flow of the movie.
The audio tracks available on this DVD are dependent on the Region that the DVD player is set to in the same way as for subtitles. They are selectable via the audio menu, and via the remote control. All audio tracks are selectable via the remote control at all times.
There are eight audio tracks on this DVD; English Dolby Digital 5.1, German Dolby Digital 5.1, French Dolby Digital 5.1, Italian Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1, Czech Dolby Digital 2.0 surround-encoded, Hungarian Dolby Digital 2.0 surround-encoded (labelled to the player and on the menus incorrectly as Polish), and an English Audio Commentary track encoded as Dolby Digital 2.0 surround. I listened to the default English Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack and to the English Audio Commentary tracks.
Dialogue was always clear and easy to understand.
There were no audio sync problems with this disc.
The score by John Barry is suited to the on-screen action, complementing the drama nicely, without being outstanding in any particular way.
The surround channels were aggressively used to support the action sequences, and much use was made of directionalized special effects. Of particular note with the sound design of this movie was the fact that sounds moved around the soundfield to match the perspective presented by the on-screen action. During action sequences, a very immersive soundfield was created, but this tended to collapse down to centre mono when quiet indoor scenes were taking place.
The .1 channel was used aggressively to support the action sequences.
Comparing the features on the Region 1 Collector's Edition to the features on our version of this disc, the Region 1 version appears to miss out on;
The video quality is almost reference quality.
The audio quality is almost reference quality.
The extras are very good.
© Michael Demtschyna
6th September 1999
|DVD||Pioneer DV-505, using S-Video output|
|Display||Loewe Art-95 95cm direct view CRT in 16:9 mode, via the S-Video input. Calibrated with the NTSC DVD version of Video Essentials.|
|Audio Decoder||Denon AVD-2000 Dolby Digital AddOn Decoder, used as a standalone processor. Calibrated with the NTSC DVD version of Video Essentials.|
|Amplification||2 x EA Playmaster 100W per channel stereo amplifiers for Left, Right, Left Rear and Right Rear; Philips 360 50W per channel stereo amplifier for Centre and Subwoofer|
|Speakers||Philips S2000 speakers for Left, Right; Polk Audio CS-100 Centre Speaker; Apex AS-123 speakers for Left Rear and Right Rear; Yamaha B100-115SE subwoofer|