|Year Released||1998||Commentary Tracks||Yes, 2
|Running Time||103 minutes||Other Extras||Menu Sound & Animation
Alternate Ending (with or without Director's Commentary)
Warner Home Video
|RRP||$34.95||Music||James Newton Howard|
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||Pan & Scan||MPEG||None|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1||Dolby Digital||5.1|
|16x9 Enhancement||Yes||Soundtrack Languages||English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Italian (Dolby Digital 5.1)
|Theatrical Aspect Ratio||1.85:1||
English for the Hearing Impaired
Italian for the Hearing Impaired
I cannot explain fully why A Perfect Murder grated on me so; all of the components of a great movie are there; decent story, decent actors, good acting, excellent cinematography, great costumes, great set design, and great music. It just did not work for me.
Michael Douglas plays Steven Taylor, a Wall Street tycoon who is a control freak, much like most of the other characters he has played in the past. Gwyneth Paltrow plays his wife, Emily. Emily is having an affair with David Shaw (Viggo Mortensen), a painter. Steven Taylor wants his wife dead, and David is just the man to do it.
I'd describe more of the plot, but frankly, I just couldn't be bothered, it's just so boring. It is of note, however, that this is the first DVD from Warner Home Video which was supposed to be day-and-date with its VHS release, hence the $34.95 RRP. It didn't quite make it, but only missed the release date by a week.
The transfer is presented at an aspect ratio of 1.78:1, 16x9 enhanced. The other side of the disc carries a Pan & Scan version of the movie.
The transfer was crystal clear and razor sharp throughout. Shadow detail was spot on at all times. No low level noise was present at all.
The colours were all perfectly rendered with no under or oversaturation noted.
No MPEG artefacts were seen. A few of the rapid pans seemed to lose a little definition, though not having seen the theatrical release of this movie, I am unsure as to whether this is a film issue or an MPEG issue. Film-to-video artefacts consisted of some image wobble in a few scenes. Film artefacts were few and far between, as would be expected for such a recent transfer.
Dialogue was pretty much always perfectly clear and audible.
There were no audio sync problems with this disc.
The musical score by James Newton Howard was exemplary, and another superb effort on his part. I am yet to hear a musical score from this composer that I haven't loved.
The surround channels were not particularly used, with this movie being basically a front soundstage presentation with little except music in the surrounds.
The .1 channel was not used much except for some of the music.
The Region 4 DVD misses out on; Cast & Crew Biographies and Production Notes. Everything else is there. Go figure.
The video quality is superb.
The audio quality is good.
The extras present are comprehensive, and the equivalent of the extras on the Region 1 version of this disc.
© Michael Demtschyna
24th May 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|