|Year Released||1996||Commentary Tracks||None|
Warner Home Video
|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)
French (Dolby Digital 2.0 )
Italian (Dolby Digital 2.0 )
|Theatrical Aspect Ratio||2.35:1||
English for the Hearing Impaired
George, however, remains quite a naive and simple man - all he wants is for his friend, Nate Pope (Forest Whitaker) to be happy, and to have his love of Lace Pennamin (Kyra Sedgwick) returned. But, complications ensue with at least some of the townsfolk threatened by the newly intelligent George.
John Travolta turns in a great performance as George, in a very moving story. Robert Duvall is his usual excellent self as the town doctor. This is an excellent movie.
The transfer is presented at an aspect ratio of 2.35:1, 16x9 enhanced. I believe in this case that this was an electronically enhanced 16x9 transfer on the basis of the variable quality of the image under stress rather than a real 16x9 transfer.
The transfer was usually sharp and clear, but at times seemed to lose some definition. Graininess was occasionally a problem. Shadow detail was satisfactory, and there was no low level noise.
The colour was well saturated throughout.
No definite MPEG artefacts were seen. Film-to-video artefacts consisted of moderately large amounts of aliasing at times involving all of the usual suspects. There was also some very unusual-looking horizontal image wobble which occurred from time to time. This did not appear to be telecine wobble, as usually it only involved a portion of the image wobbling horizontally. When it occurred, it was very distracting. Two specific examples of this artefact are at 55:57 - 56:41 (watch the back of the chair) and 76:44 - 76:54 (watch the house). I wonder whether this was some sort of MPEG motion compensation artefact. Film artefacts were rare.
Dialogue was usually clear and audible, though some words were a little hard to make out. The dialogue had an artificial, processed quality to it - a lot of the time it was not well integrated into the rest of the soundtrack which was somewhat distracting.
There were no audio sync problems with this disc.
The musical score was by Thomas Newman. It was well suited to the relaxed feel of the movie, and complemented the action superbly. It was not present all that often, but when it was, it fitted nicely.
The surround channels were not used a great deal, being a dialogue-based movie, but there was quite a deal of ambience placed in the front channels which was very effective indeed.
The .1 channel did little except for a few select moments, where it was called into action most impressively.
The video quality varies from mostly excellent to some poorly transferred sections.
The audio quality is good.
The extras present are non-existent.
© Michael Demtschyna
4th June 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|