On the Line (2001)

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Released 3-Jun-2003

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Family Main Menu Audio & Animation
Audio Commentary-Eric Bross (Director) & Emmanuelle Chriqui
Featurette-Behind The Scenes
Storyboard Comparisons
Outtakes
Deleted Scenes-5 +/- commentary
Music Video-On The Line
Featurette-Making The Music Video
Featurette-Home Movies From The Set
Theatrical Trailer
Biographies-Cast-*N Sync
Interviews-Cast
Easter Egg-Paper Planes
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 2001
Running Time 82:05
RSDL / Flipper RSDL Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Eric Bross
Studio
Distributor

Walt Disney Studios Home Ent.
Starring Lance Bass
Joey Fatone
Emmanuelle Chriqui
GQ
Richie Sambora
Dave Foley
Jerry Stiller
Al Green
Tamara Jones
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI $31.95 Music Stewart Copeland


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (384Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.85:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits Yes, during end credits

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    Oh oh! A film starring two of the members of boy band *NSync. If that's enough to turn you off, then read no further. Of course if you like the group, then this film may be of interest.

    Kevin Gibbons (Lance Bass from *NSync I'm told) is a lucky man. He's got the looks of a pop star (funny that), a cool job as a young advertising executive, and a cool bunch of mates to hang with. Unfortunately he's not much of a champion at love. Whenever he tries to ask a girl out, he's a chump and just freezes up. So imagine his excitement when, while enjoying his daily ride to work on the train, he meets an gorgeous and delightful young lady, Abbey (Emmanuele Chriqui). Kevin and Abbey immediately hit it off and connect on many levels. Unfortunately for Kevin, his day is just about to nose-dive. The girl gets off at her stop, but Kevin forgets to ask her name or get her number. Before he can ask, she's gone. So begins a story of lost love. Since Kevin is in the advertising game, he simply devises a plan with his pals (including fellow *NSyncer Joey Fatone) to advertise around Chicago for his soul mate. Posters, billboards, and newspaper articles. Kevin will stop at nothing to find the girl of his dreams. Between encouragement from his mates, ridicule from his work mates, increasing public interest and a bizarre case of one-upmanship and revenge from a fellow at the newspaper, Kevin soldiers on looking for Abbey.

    Now unless I'm missing something, this film simply has no soul. It has no vibe. There is no desire for me to want to care for the cardboard cut-out characters. I said a small prayer when I realised it was only 80 minutes long. Everybody simply seems to go through the motions in an effort to get to the end. The comic talents of Jerry Stiller and Dave Foley (the latter playing Kevin's boss) are wasted here. They get a couple of clever lines, but in general this is a lame attempt at a film.

    Somebody obviously told the *NSync boys to get real jobs. I don't think they meant acting.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    This film is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and is 16x9 enhanced.

    While the level of sharpness is adequate, it is the occurrence of plenty of annoying edge enhancement that sees me deduct the most marks. The worst examples of this problem occur at 23:05 and 24:08. Shadow detail is handled well, and grain is minimal. There is also no low level noise. The colours are without major problem, but they are also nothing to write home about in terms of vibrancy. At least the blacks are black and the skin tones look pretty good.

    I saw no MPEG artefacts and thankfully there are few instances of other artefacts at all.

    There are only English subtitles available. They do the job.

    This is a dual layered disc and since I was unable to spot a layer change, I'm guessing the film is on one layer and the extras are on another. The film running time of only 82 minutes would support this claim.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    There are only two audio soundtracks to choose from. Both are in English. One is a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack and the other is the Dolby Digital 2.0 commentary soundtrack.

    The soundtrack is quite solid, with plenty of front speaker use, frequent musical interludes and some directional separation. Dialogue is fine with no apparent audio sync problems.

    With the two leads in this film hailing from boy group *NSync, you get a fair indication as to what sort of music you're in store for. More *NSync, Mandy Moore, Vitamin C, Britney Spears, and others including the veteran Al Green. You get the idea. Stewart Copeland (ex-The Police) composed the score.

    There really isn't a great deal of surround use, but the sub rumbles with the odd train sound and when the various bands crank up the action.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

Main Menu Audio & Animation

Audio Commentary

    I knew I was in trouble with this commentary track about seven minutes into it, when director Eric Bross starts comparing scenes he has done to those of the legendary Frank Capra. Give me a break - this film ain't no Mr Smith or It's a Wonderful Life. It gets worse though when he reckons he's done some scene transitions just like the even more legendary David Lean. Both participants also get stuck in the rut of proclaiming every scene as their favourite and complimenting every actor on just how fantastic and wonderful they are - even the extras!  - I kid you not.

Featurette-Behind The Scenes

    8:41 minutes of self-congratulatory back-slapping as the actors and crew discuss how great the script, the film, and each other are. Pure fluff and nothing else.

Storyboard Comparisons

    Two small screens present several scenes comparing storyboard to the finished product. Running for 5:07, there are several scenes from the opening and closing sequences and a couple from the middle of the film.

Outtakes

    With an intro commentary from the director, these outtakes run for 3:33 minutes. Mildly amusing.

Deleted Scenes

    Several deleted scenes that run for a combined 6:31 minutes. Optional director commentary is available.

Music Video - On The Line

    Running for 3:40 minutes, this music video for the title song features the talents of *NSync, Mandy Moore, and Vitamin C among others. You could probably just watch the video and get a gist for most of the story.

Featurette - Making The Music Video

    Pretty hard to guess what this one is about...not. Runs for 5:58 minutes and gives a very brief and ultimately unsatisfying look at the making of the music video.

Featurette - Home Video

    Somebody decided to take a home video camera along to an *NSync concert that featured the teaser trailer being played on the big screen before the show started. This is some rough footage of the reaction to that trailer being played. Total running time is 3:58 and the camera shakes around an awful lot.

Theatrical Trailer

    The trailer is rather ordinary. Running for 2:08 minutes and presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 it is not 16x9 enhanced. Gives away plenty of the plot.

Biographies-Cast

    Quite comprehensive biographies for the principal cast and the other *NSync lads. Not sure why the latter are important.

Interviews-Cast

    Some brief interviews with Lance Bass (2:35), Joey Fatone (2:49), Emmanuel Chriqui (2:01), Jerry Stiller (1:15), and Dave Foley (1:04). The usual stuff.

Easter Egg - Paper Planes

    Not difficult to find at all. A brief segment on the making of paper planes which seems quite pivotal to the plot.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    Apart from an additional French Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack it would seem that the Region 1 disc is identical to the Region 4 offering.

Summary

    If you are a fan of the boy group *NSync, then you'll enjoy this. Otherwise steer well clear. You have been warned. It lacks heart, soul, and a decent story. There's more cardboard here than in a Visyboard factory.

    The video transfer is only average, with some annoying edge enhancement causing most concern.

    The audio is workmanlike without being sensational.

    The extras are comprehensive, but mirror the quality of the film.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Darren Walters (It's . . . just the vibe . . . of my bio)
Sunday, June 22, 2003
Review Equipment
DVDLoewe Xemix 5106DO, using RGB output
DisplayLoewe Calida (84cm). Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationHarmon/Kardon AVR7000.
SpeakersFront - B&W 602S2, Centre - B&W CC6S2, Rear - B&W 601S2, Sub - Energy E:xl S10

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Comments (Add)
b****** - orangecat (my kingdom for a decent bio) REPLY POSTED
double b****** Region 4 gets stiffed on Aussie film releases. - Christopher