The Shipment (2001)
Main Menu Audio & Animation
|Year Of Production||2001|
|Running Time||87:53 (Case: 92)|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||Alex Wright|
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||Full Frame||English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||None|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.33:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
A Mexican truck driver, Jose (Paul Rodriguez), is approached by some hoodlums to get some stuff across the border into the USA. He's wary. After all, what sort of stuff would hoods want to smuggle over the border? Guns? Drugs? Well, it is drugs, but not of the normal kind. It's a large quantity of Vigoroso — an extra-potent (oops) version of Viagra. Apparently it's not approved by the FDA, so they want to smuggle it over the border and make a killing. Unfortunately, some Mexican police show up, and in the subsequent shoot-out only Jose is left alive. He takes off with the Vigoroso, and makes contact with some Mafia types to sell the drug. He's forced to do the smuggling for them, though, and he comes up with a means to get the pills over the border. That works, but his truck breaks down, and then some really silly things happen.
This movie is about a bunch of crooks (including Nick Turturro and Robert Loggia) from New York trying to survive being mixed up with the local yokels (including Matthew Modine, looking a lot like Gary Cooper) in Paradise, Arizona. The crooks are trying to recover the pills; the locals are just annoyed that the crooks are shooting the place up.
This is not a good film. There are some ridiculous coincidences. There are some dreadful stereotypes. There's some really awful dialogue. There's a large amount of ammunition expended with minimal environmental damage (low budget for pyrotechnics, perhaps?). And who insisted that they needed the midget Mexican with the machine-gun?
I cannot in good conscience recommend this film unless you want something really dreadful as a counter-example in film school.
This DVD transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1. It is not 16x9 enhanced. As far as I can tell, this was made for TV, so that really is the original aspect ratio.
The image is quite sharp on close-ups, with reasonable detail, but softer on middle and long-range shots. Shadow detail is rather good. Film grain is only an issue in one fade-to-black at 50:14. There's no low-level noise (although that grainy moment looks like it).
Colour is quite good. There are no colour-related artefacts.
One of the few film artefacts I noticed was a small black spot at 56:15. The camera is out of focus at 52:56, but it's momentary. There is lots of aliasing, mostly on truck and car grilles, but also on things like corrugated iron; it's a bit annoying, but we've all seen worse. There's no significant moire, and no MPEG artefacts.
There are no subtitles, which is disappointing — some of the dialogue is a little indistinct.
The disc is single-sided and single-layered. The movie is short enough that it fits easily onto the single layer.
The soundtrack is provided in English. It's a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack, although one wonders why for most of the film. For the vast majority of the film the soundtrack is completely frontal, mostly collapsing into a mono experience.
The dialogue is generally clear and easy enough to understand, but there are moments when it becomes a bit hard to make out. There are no audio sync problems. There is one passage, around 67:19, where Nick Turturro's voice sounds quite odd — I'm not sure if this is sloppy ADR, or poor on-site recording.
The score from Richard Tuttobene is fairly clichéd, but far from the worst feature of the film.
The surrounds get very little to do for most of the film, but they get some exercise with gunfire in the last act of the film. The subwoofer is not completely inactive, but it never draws attention to itself.
|Surround Channel Use|
The menu is animated with music; it's not a complex menu, but it is functional.
This is a straightforward trailer, but nothing exciting. Shame it's the only extra on this disc.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The Region 1 disc was released in October 2002. It sounds like it was pretty much the same as the R4 version (same features, same aspect ratio), but it is not currently available. Makes me wonder if it has already been discontinued.
The Shipment is a fairly poor movie given quite a decent transfer to DVD.
The video quality is good.
The audio quality is decent.
The only extra is the trailer.
|DVD||Pioneer DV-S733A, using Component output|
|Display||Sony VPH-G70 CRT Projector, QuadScan Elite scaler (Tripler), ScreenTechnics 110. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Speakers||Front Left, Centre, Right: Krix Euphonix; Rears: Krix KDX-M; Subwoofer: Krix Seismix 5|