Overall | Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) | Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984) | Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989) | Adventures of Indiana Jones, The: Bonus Material (2003)

The Adventures of Indiana Jones (Box Set) (1981)

The Adventures of Indiana Jones (Box Set) (1981)

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Released 21-Oct-2003

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Overall Package

    Many of us grew up with the Indiana Jones films, and remember them with fond memories. The secret of success for the films was that they took the B-grade adventure flicks and stories of the 1930s and 1940s and did a homage/parody of them, in a fun sort of way with tongue firmly in cheek. A fairly simple concept was executed brilliantly, with jaw-dropping action sequences involving daring stunts and amazing special effects. I was hooked from the moment I saw the giant boulder rushing behind Indiana Jones, and I still remember the howls of laughter in the cinema when Indy took out his gun and shot the master swordsman.

    I suspect the three Indiana Jones films must be one of the most eagerly anticipated "trilogies" that people have been waiting for to appear in the DVD format, right alongside Star Wars IV-VI and Back To The Future I-III. I know some people have been talking about wanting to see the three films on DVD from as early as 1997 in the early days of the format.

    Was the wait worthwhile? I believe so. Early DVD releases often were not 16x9 enhanced (at least in the US, less so in Australia), had no extras, and had numerous compression artefacts. DVD authoring has come a long way since then, and transfers now are significantly better due to improved MPEG encoders, plus better understanding of and care during the encoding process.

    Messrs. Lucas and Spielberg plus Paramount are obviously keen on ensuring that fans like us are treated to the best possible presentation of these films as possible. Each film has been painstakingly restored and blemishes digitally edited out almost on a frame by frame basis resulting in stunningly good transfers for all three films.

    There have been some critics of the fact that minor flaws (such as the reflection of a cobra against safety glass in a scene from Raiders of the Lost Ark) being "corrected" in the process, but I don't mind, and thankfully the films are largely preserved intact and faithful to the original theatrical release, unlike the extensive reworkings meted out to the Star Wars films.

    In addition, we get a bonus fourth disc filled with over 3 hours of retrospective documentaries featuring interviews with cast and crew.

    So, for now, enjoy these films on DVD and let's hope they do at least as good a job on the Star Wars series!

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Christine Tham (read my biography)
Saturday, November 01, 2003
Other Reviews
MovieHole - Clint M

Comments (Add) NONE
Overall | Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) | Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984) | Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989) | Adventures of Indiana Jones, The: Bonus Material (2003)

Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

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Released 21-Oct-2003

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Action Main Menu Audio & Animation
Menu Animation & Audio
THX Optimizer
Web Links-indianajones.com
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 1981
Running Time 110:36
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (48:45) Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Steven Spielberg
Studio
Distributor

Paramount Home Entertainment
Starring Harrison Ford
Karen Allen
Paul Freeman
Ronald Lacey
John Rhys-Davies
Denholm Elliot
Alfred Molina
Wolf Kahler
Anthony Higgins
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI Box Music John Williams


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Catalan Dolby Digital 2.0 mono (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.35:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
Spanish
Croatian
Greek
Hebrew
Portuguese
Serbian
Slovenian
Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    The Indiana Jones trilogy is the second of the big three sets to reach DVD. The first was Back to the Future, which arrived last year. This year it's Indiana Jones. Maybe next year it will be time for Star Wars? I've been waiting a long time, starting from about the first time I contemplated buying a DVD player, for this. Can you spell "extreme anticipation" and "heightened expectations"? Could any DVD live up to that?

    The first film in the series, which I still think of as Raiders of the Lost Ark (even if it has been officially renamed to Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark to fit with the other two, the credits on the film still call it Raiders of the Lost Ark), was released in 1981, and became an instant classic. It blends comedy and action seamlessly, and even has a neat little love interest that doesn't interfere with the story flow. I think it's the strongest of the three films, partly because it was made to be able to stand alone.

    Should I describe the story? I guess so, even if most of us know it well. Dr Jones (Harrison Ford) is a renowned archaeologist, but he has something of a weakness for adventure. He's not content lecturing young students about ancient civilisations; he'd rather be trekking through jungles trying to find valuable relics. This film is set prior to World War II (1936), when there seemed to be more adventure in the world.

    He returns from an unsuccessful trip to South America, where he was deprived of a treasure by ruthless rival archaeologist René Belloq (Paul Freeman), and resumes lecturing, working for Marcus Brody (Denholm Elliott, who gets a bigger part in the third movie). He is approached by US Army Intelligence to look into some strange doings by a group of Nazis — they seem to be very interested in some ancient archaeological artefacts of a religious nature, and may have unearthed Tanis, the city where the long-lost Ark of the Covenant was concealed. This fascinates Jones, and he tears off to investigate.

    This film does a superb job of blending Hitler's fascination with the occult, Biblical mythology and archaeology — I don't know how much of it is authentic, but it doesn't matter, because we're willing to suspend disbelief and enjoy the ride. And it's quite a ride.

    I was wondering how well the special effects would hold up today, over twenty years later, after we've seen the world of visual effects develop so much. I'm surprised, and delighted, to see that they still look very good indeed.

    I'm not sure how many times I've seen this film, but I don't tire of it — I can say that with confidence, given that it's 22 years since I first saw it. I fully expect to watch this DVD many times, both alone and with friends.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    This transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 2.35:1, with 16x9 enhancement. The original aspect ratio was 2.35:1, so this is quite acceptable.

    The image is sharp and clear. Shadow detail is very good. There's negligible film grain and there is no low level noise.

    Colour is well-rendered, and there is enough in the way of bright colour so we can appreciate that. There are no colour-related artefacts.

    There are no film artefacts — this film has been superbly restored (hmm, maybe that's what the "meticulously restored and remastered frame-by-frame" note on the back cover means?). There are a couple of optical artefacts, such as the red lens flare at 50:50, but that simply makes the film seem more real.

    There is almost no aliasing. I did see a faint trace at 55:40, but I'm only pointing it out to indicate how little there is. There is no moiré and there are no MPEG artefacts.

    There are subtitles in eight languages, including English. I watched the English subtitles. They are well-timed to the dialogue, close to word-for-word, and easy to read in an attractive font. They are placed on the picture, rather than in the black bar underneath (that's about the only criticism of them I can make).

    The disc is single-sided and dual layered, formatted RSDL. The layer change is at 48:45, at a brief pause. It will be invisible on many systems, and only visible on others as a slightly longer pause.

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

Audio

    The soundtrack is provided in three languages. I only listened to the English, which is Dolby Digital 5.1, at 448kbps. The original sound is credited as Dolby Stereo (that means surround-encoded), so this is a remix, but it's a good one. About the only criticism I can make is that it is just a little lacking in dynamic range — I would expect the loud spots to be just a little bit louder, but it is only a small point.

    The dialogue is clear and easy to understand, without sounding artificial. Audio sync is never a problem.

    This is a John Williams score, complete with the famous Indiana Jones theme. Good stuff.

    The subwoofer gets plenty to do (including a certain rolling boulder...). The surrounds support a variety of directional sound effects, and are used to deepen the soundstage for the score, although there are periods when they are inactive. Quite a decent surround mix for a soundtrack that wasn't made 5.1 in the first place.

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

Extras

    The only extras on this disc are DVD-ROM based. Most of the extras in this set are on the fourth disc. I was expecting a commentary, but there isn't one, which is a shame.

Menu

    The menu is a nice piece of design, with a cute opening transition, and nice animation and music behind what is really quite a simple menu. It is easy to navigate.

THX Optimiser

    The usual tests that are supposed to allow you to optimise the settings of your equipment for playing this disc.

DVD-ROM: indianajones.com

    If you put this DVD into a PC, it gives you access to the special web site. In a regular DVD player, all you get is one page of instructions (not much of an extra...).

R4 vs R1

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

    The Region 1 version of this disc is scheduled for simultaneous release. I would expect it to offer identical features, just in NTSC instead of PAL, and probably with a different selection of languages.

    Given that this disc is essentially as good as you might want, I see no reason to go for the NTSC transfer.

Summary

    A movie that will probably find its way into almost every collection. It has been given a good presentation on DVD. Sure, there are no real extras on this disc, but there's an entire disc of extras in the set. More importantly, the film has been given an excellent transfer.

    The video quality is excellent.

    The audio quality is excellent.

    On a DVD player there are essentially no extras on this disc.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Tony Rogers (bio-degrading: making a fool of oneself in a bio...)
Friday, October 17, 2003
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-S733A, using Component output
DisplaySony VPH-G70 CRT Projector, QuadScan Elite scaler (Tripler), ScreenTechnics 110. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationDenon AVC-A1SE
SpeakersFront Left, Centre, Right: Krix Euphonix; Rears: Krix KDX-M; Subwoofer: Krix Seismix 5

Other Reviews
DVD Net - Amy F
The DVD Bits - Shane A

Comments (Add)
digital tampering - Nick H (do you have a spare 60 seconds-read my bio)
Not tampering,fixing. -
Region 4 Vs Region 1 - Mickey Juice
Framing issues - REPLY POSTED
Rating? - REPLY POSTED
Tampering... - Simon O'Connor (I wouldn't suggest reading my bio)
Indy - it's out -
Indy pack - at HMV as well...but expensive! - TurkeyTom
I got it from Myer -
JB is Cheap! - Stimpy (da, what's a bio Ren?)
staining on Raiders disc -
Coffee stains/watermarks on DVDs - Mickey Juice
more coffee stains -
RE: Why couldn't DVD's be made like floppy disks? -
Floppy disk solution - Mickey Juice
Disc problem - DMM (yeah bio whatever)
RE: Disc Problem. - DarkEye (This bio says: Death to DNR!)
DVD vs TV Widescreen - REPLY POSTED
dvd vs tv widescreen difference -
Digital TV version in HD - Ben H (My biography. Go on have a read...)
Easter Egg -
re: Disc problems - Mickey Juice
coffee stains - Johnny Wadd (i am bionic)
RE: DISC PROBLEMS (DENT) -
I had a dent on my copy too. - Christopher
. - Christopher
Subtitles cannot be on the black bar in widescreen mode! - REPLY POSTED
Australian Climber - Brent R (bio-zet is especially formulated for front loading machines)
Re: Australian Climber -

Overall | Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) | Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984) | Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989) | Adventures of Indiana Jones, The: Bonus Material (2003)

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984)

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984)

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Released 21-Oct-2003

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Adventure Main Menu Audio & Animation
Menu Animation & Audio
THX Optimizer
Web Links
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 1984
Running Time 113:32
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (57:39) Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Steven Spielberg
Studio
Distributor

Paramount Home Entertainment
Starring Harrison Ford
Kate Capshaw
Amrish Puri
Roshan Seth
Philip Stone
Ke Huy Quan
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI Box Music John Williams


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Catalan Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.35:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
Spanish
Croatian
Greek
Hebrew
Portuguese
Serbian
Slovenian
Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    In the interests of getting this review out the door as quickly as possible, I am going to post an abbreviated synopsis. After all, you have probably watched this film dozens of times and have waited 5 years for this DVD, so anything I say is going to be redundant.

    Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom represents the second film in the trilogy, and the first of the films to feature "Indiana Jones" in the title (subsequently adding "Indiana Jones" to the re-release of the first film does not really change history, just like we will always remember the first Star Wars film as Star Wars and not Star Wars IV: A New Hope).

    Sometimes referred to as the "Asian" Indiana Jones film, there are only two real locations in this film: Shanghai, China, around 1935, and "somewhere in northern India" near "Pankot Palace." In reality, of course, the film was shot in Macau, Sri Lanka and in EMI's Elstree Studios in England.

    The opening of the film features a surreal cabaret act starring "Willie" Scott (Kate Capshaw). She is also the girlfriend of local thug Lao Che (Roy Chiao). Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford) has successfully recovered the cremated remains of the first Manchu Emperor and is willing to trade these with Lao Che for a big diamond. Needless to say, things don't quite go as smoothly as everyone would like, and Indiana runs for his life, taking Willie with him, aided by a cute Chinese kid called Short Round (Jonathan Ke Quan).

    They get onto a plane (with the aid of a cameo role from Dan Aykroyd plus George Lucas and Steven Spielberg acting as extras in the background) but it crashes in the Himalayas, although not before Indiana and company effect a daring James Bond like escape. They eventually find themselves in India, at a village devastated because their good luck charm - none other than one of the long lost Chankara stones - has been stolen and all their children kidnapped.

    Indiana and gang makes a trip to Pankot Palace, where they are greeted by the cast from Gandhi. There, Indiana seeks to find the stolen Chankara stone, and uncovers a bizarre religious sect determined to recover all 5 of the stones and wreak evil upon the world.

    This is probably my least favourite of the trilogy, but watching it again after many years reminded me that even the worst of the Indiana Jones film is one ripping good yarn. Therefore, my two thumbs up.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    We are treated with a superb widescreen 16x9 enhanced transfer, presented in the intended aspect ratio of 2.35:1.

    Let me put you at ease if you have been apprehensive about whether the long wait for the trilogy to appear on DVD is worthwhile, and whether we will get a sub-standard transfer. Worry not, because this transfer is as good as I would dare hope for.

    Let me start off by listing the only faults I can find in this near-reference quality transfer. Okay, there is a slight amount of Gibb's effect, or mosquito ringing, around the opening titles. There are a few instances of very minor amounts of grain here and there. The end titles feature a slight amount of shimmering.

    That's it. The rest of the film is pretty much perfect. Detail levels are superb, with lots of low level detail such as the indentation patterns in the gong at the beginning of the film, the texture of the tweed jacket that Indiana wears in the palace, and even wrinkles on faces.

    Colour saturation is pretty close to perfect, and I suspect the contrast has been enhanced as the transfer has a very three dimensional look that pops into your eyes.

    The film source is virtually spotless, and I suspect blemishes have been digitally edited out.

    There are several subtitle tracks on the disc: English, Spanish, Croatian, Greek, Hebrew, Portuguese, Serbian, and Slovenian. I turned on the English subtitle track briefly. Dialogue accuracy was about average, and there are several instances in the film where the spoken dialogue has been simplified in the subtitles.

    This is a single sided dual layered disc (RSDL). The layer change occurs towards the beginning of Chapter 18 at 57:39 and results in a slight pause as our heroes walk in the secret passageway to the ritual chamber. This is not the ideal place for a layer change, but at least it occurs in a relatively quiet part of the film where there is little movement.

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

Audio

    There are several audio tracks on this disc: English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s), Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s), and Catalan Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s).

    The original soundtrack was encoded in Dolby Stereo, so the Dolby Digital 5.1 track has obviously been remastered. I would have liked to see a dts 5.1 audio track, but to be honest the Dolby Digital 5.1 sounds marvellous, and I'd be struggling to think of any obvious areas that needed improvement.

    Apart from a slightly bright overall sound, the audio track sounds like it could have been recorded yesterday, for a modern film.

    Dialogue was consistently clear and sharp, and there are no issues with audio synchronization. I noticed some instances of non-centred dialogue, such as Willie singing during the opening song and dance, and various whispers and off-screen dialogue.

    The soundtrack is rather enveloping and atmospheric, and I continually noted Foley effects distributed across all channels. Of course, most of the panning occurs across the front channels, but occasionally I detected good usage of the surround channels, such as the childish scream that Indiana hears straight after he tries to steal the Chankara stones after the sacrificial ritual.

    The subwoofer was well integrated into the overall soundtrack, and is mainly used to support the low frequencies in the special effects.

    The original music score by John Williams comes through in all its glory and is mixed into all channels.

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

Extras

    Paramount has obviously decided to optimize the quality of the transfer and minimize the amount of extras on the disc. A good decision, and one that I thoroughly approve of, since all the extras are on a separate bonus disc. What we have is a two hour film spread across a dual layered disc using up nearly 7Gb of storage. The transfer rate consistently hovers around 7-8Mb/s, resulting in excellent transfer quality.

Menu

    The menus are 16x9 enhanced, and extensively animated with background audio. In addition, there are animated menu transitions.

THX Optimizer

    This is a set of calibration screens to allow you to optimally adjust your display to the same levels as those used to encode the film.

Web Links

    You are promised an "exclusive web link" if you put the disc into a PC with a DVD-ROM player and install the InterActual Player. I didn't bother.

Censorship

    There is censorship information available for this title. Click here to read it (a new window will open). WARNING: Often these entries contain MAJOR plot spoilers.

R4 vs R1

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

    The Region 4 version of this disc misses out on:

    The Region 1 version of this disc misses out on:

    The R1 and R4 discs appear to be identical except for PAL vs NTSC formatting, and foreign language content.

    The video transfers are virtually identical in quality, except the R1 seems slightly softer and grainier but has less Gibb's effect ringing and edge enhancement. Although the average bitrate of the transfer is about the same (7.64Mb/s vs 7.57Mb/s), the R1 bitrate is more variable, ranging from 6-9Mb/s.

    The audio transfers are also very similar, except the R1 has slightly better bass definition due to lack of 4% speedup. I would rate the R1 audio transfer as reference quality, and the R4 audio transfer as "near reference quality."

Summary

    Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom is the second film in the highly acclaimed Indiana Jones trilogy.

    The video transfer is superb and near reference quality.

    The remastered 5.1 audio track is excellent.

    There are minimal extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Christine Tham (read my biography)
Sunday, October 19, 2003
Review Equipment
DVDCustom HTPC (Asus A7N266-VM, Athlon XP 2400+, 512MB, LiteOn LTD-165S, WinXP, WinDVD5 Platinum), using RGB output
DisplaySony VPL-VW11HT LCD Projector, ScreenTechnics 16x9 matte white screen (254cm). Calibrated with Video Essentials/Ultimate DVD Platinum/AVIA. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationDenon AVC-A1SE (upgraded)
SpeakersFront and surrounds: B&W CDM7NT, front centre: B&W CDMCNT, surround backs: B&W DM601S2, subwoofer: B&W ASW2500

Other Reviews NONE
Comments (Add)
Missing bits from UK version... -
Hey, Lady! You call him Doctor Jones! - Dark Lord (Bio? We don't need no stinkin' bio!)
First Film Really -
no 2nd film - Tsargrad (My Bio)
MOST LIKELY NOT CUT AT ALL -
Re: MOST LIKELY NOT CUT AT ALL - Dark Lord (Bio? We don't need no stinkin' bio!)
Checked - Film is not cut -
This is my favourite -
Re: Irresponsible Reviewer - Anonymous! - Rodda (This... is my *bioom* stick!)
glitch on Teac D2000 - REPLY POSTED
What happened to the 'falling egg' scene? - Mabster (read my bio)
Falling egg scene? -
Falling Egg - cerdmann
I got the glitch too - Sansui -
Missing bits from UK version -
This disc has RCE! -
Is RCE causing the glitches people are seeing? -

Overall | Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) | Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984) | Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989) | Adventures of Indiana Jones, The: Bonus Material (2003)

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)

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Released 21-Oct-2003

Cover Art

This review is sponsored by
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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Adventure Main Menu Audio & Animation
Menu Animation & Audio
THX Optimizer
Web Links
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 1989
Running Time 121:40
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (63:16) Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Steven Spielberg
Studio
Distributor

Paramount Home Entertainment
Starring Harrison Ford
Sean Connery
Elliott Denholm
Alison Doody
John Rhys-Davies
Julian Glover
River Phoenix
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI Box Music John Williams


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1
Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0
Catalan Dolby Digital 2.0
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.35:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
Spanish
Croatian
Greek
Hebrew
Portuguese
Serbian
Slovenian
Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits Yes, closing credits over ride into sunset

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

Plot Synopsis

    Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade is the third film in the Indiana Jones trilogy, and from a plot perspective probably the most complex of the three, focusing not only on the relationship between Indiana Jones and his father, but also including a prologue (captioned "Utah, 1912") featuring Indiana Jones as a young boy (played by the late River Phoenix). Some of the elements of the prologue are instrumental in shaping the character of Indiana Jones as a man, and we discover many things, such as why he hates snakes, why he has a scar on his chin, why he is so passionate about recovering lost artefacts, and even why he wears a leather jacket, hat and carries a whip. Hint: it's not because he is into fetish ...

    The main part of the film is set in 1938, a "couple" of years after the events in Raiders Of The Lost Ark. Therefore, the film references many of the elements of the first film - including the Nazis, the recovery of an important Christian artefact, Dr. Marcus Brody (Denholm Elliott), and there's even a reference to the Ark Of The Covenant when Indiana Jones is in the catacombs beneath the library in Venice.

    After a brief but exciting plot bridge that connects the prologues to the main film, we find Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford) back at university, teaching class. However, he discovers someone has sent him a strange parcel in the mail. Before he can find out what's in the parcel, he is taken to see a rich philanthropist and historic object collector, Walter Donovan (Julian Glover). Walter informs Indiana of some recent discoveries that point to the location of the missing Holy Grail - the cup that Jesus drank from at the Last Supper. However, the project leader has disappeared, and he is none other than Indiana's father, Professor Henry Jones, Sr. (Sean Connery). The parcel, of course, turns out to be Prof. Jones' missing Grail scrapbook, which everyone is looking for (but Indiana doesn't know that yet).

    Indiana and Marcus travels to Venice to search for the missing Dr. Jones, where they meet up with his assistant, Dr. Elsa Schneider (Alison Doody). What follows is a typically exciting adventure through Austria, Germany and the "Republic of Hatay" (this was a small country that actually existed between 1938 and 1939 and its capital was Alexandretta). Some of the exciting scenes include Indiana and Elsa avoiding rats underneath a library in Venice, travelling on a German blimp, Indiana getting an signed autograph from Hitler himself in Berlin, a desert scene involving a huge tank, and the search for the Holy Grail at an awe-inspiring location (which I won't reveal, even though I am sure most of you have already watched the film).

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Transfer Quality

Video

    Like the other two films in the box set, this is a superb widescreen 16x9 enhanced transfer, presented in the intended aspect ratio of 2.35:1.

    Detail levels are superb, and colour saturation is pretty much perfect. Contrast appears to have been enhanced, as the transfer has a very "three dimensional" look with deep blacks and strong highlights.

    The film source appears to be remarkably clean, and I suspect scratches and marks have been digitally edited out in the restoration process. I noticed two very fine vertical lines at the very beginning of the film, and there are minor amounts of grain. In addition, there is a minor amount of telecine wobble at the beginning and end of the film.

    The only video and compression artefacts that I noticed are minor edge enhancement, Gibb's effect ringing (particularly around the opening titles), and slight shimmering on the manhole around 35:07.

    There are several subtitle tracks on this disc: English, Spanish, Croatian, Greek, Hebrew, Portuguese, Serbian, and Slovenian. I turned on the English subtitle track briefly. Dialogue accuracy was about average, and there are several instances in the film where the spoken dialogue has been simplified in the subtitles.

    This is a single sided dual layered disc (RSDL). The layer change occurs mid-scene in Chapter 18 at 63:16 and results in a slight pause whilst Indiana and his father are talking on the motorcycle. This is not the ideal place for a layer change, but fortunately the pause is very brief.

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

Audio

    There are several audio tracks: English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s), Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 surround encoded (192Kb/s), and Catalan Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s).

    The original soundtrack was encoded in Dolby Stereo, so the Dolby Digital 5.1 track has obviously been remastered. I would have liked to have seen a dts 5.1 audio track, but to be honest the Dolby Digital 5.1 track sounds marvellous, and I'd be struggling to think of any obvious areas that needed improvement.

    This is a nice, solid and enveloping soundtrack. There are numerous instances of Foley effects panning across the screen, as well as directed to surround channels (particularly thunderstorms). Given that the original soundtrack was in Dolby Stereo, surround activity is fairly monaural, but there are some instances of front to back (and vice versa) panning of Foley effects (like airplane engines).

    Dialogue was fairly clear throughout most of the film. However, I noticed a slight instance of clipping distortion around 9:51 when Sean Connery shouts "Junior!" to young Indiana. There are no issues with audio synchronization.

    The subwoofer was well integrated into the overall soundtrack, and is mainly used to support the low frequencies in the special effects (particularly in the thunderstorms and explosions).

    The original music score by John Williams comes through in all its glory and is mixed into all channels. I noticed that the strings sounded a little "glassy" and brittle during the opening titles, and I suspect this is because of the PAL 4% speedup, since the strings sounded okay on my R1 copy of the film.

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

Extras

    Paramount has obviously decided to optimize the quality of the transfer and minimize the amount of extras on the disc. A good decision, and one that I thoroughly approve of, since all the extras are on a separate bonus disc. What we have is a two hour film spread across a dual layered disc using up nearly 7Gb of storage. The transfer rate averages at 6.60 Mb/s but varies from as low as 4 to as high as 9Mb/s over the duration of the film.

Menu

    The menus are 16x9 enhanced, and extensively animated with background audio. In addition, there are animated menu transitions.

THX Optimizer

    This is a set of calibration screens to allow you to optimally adjust your display to the same levels as those used to encode the film.

Web Links

    You are promised an "exclusive web link" if you put the disc into a PC with a DVD-ROM player and install InterActual Player. I didn't bother, since the InterActual player installation is very bare bones and it's just as easy to surf directly to dvd.indianajones.com.

Censorship

    There is censorship information available for this title. Click here to read it (a new window will open). WARNING: Often these entries contain MAJOR plot spoilers.

R4 vs R1

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

    The Region 4 version of this disc misses out on:

    The Region 1 version of this disc misses out on:

    The R1 and R4 discs appear to be identical except for PAL vs NTSC formatting, and foreign language content.

    The video transfers are virtually identical in quality, except edge enhancement is slightly less noticeable. The average bitrate of the transfer is slightly higher for R1 (7.2Mb/s), and the R1 bitrate seems to range from 4-10Mb/s.

    The audio transfers are also very similar, except the R1 has slightly better bass definition due to the lack of PAL's 4% speedup. I would rate the R1 audio transfer as reference quality, and the R4 audio transfer as "near reference quality."

Summary

    Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade is the third film in the highly acclaimed Indiana Jones trilogy.

    The video transfer is superb and of near reference quality.

    The remastered 5.1 audio track is excellent.

    There are minimal extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Christine Tham (read my biography)
Tuesday, October 28, 2003
Review Equipment
DVDCustom HTPC (Asus A7N266-VM, Athlon XP 2400+, 512MB, LiteOn LTD-165S, WinXP, WinDVD5 Platinum), using RGB output
DisplaySony VPL-VW11HT LCD Projector, ScreenTechnics 16x9 matte white screen (254cm). Calibrated with Video Essentials/Ultimate DVD Platinum/AVIA. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationDenon AVC-A1SE (upgraded)
SpeakersFront and surrounds: B&W CDM7NT, front centre: B&W CDMCNT, surround backs: B&W DM601S2, subwoofer: B&W ASW2500

Other Reviews
Michael D's Region 4 DVD Info Page - MickJT (Have a look at my biography)

Comments (Add)
Foley effects? - REPLY POSTED
1989 - wolfgirv

Overall | Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) | Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984) | Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989) | Adventures of Indiana Jones, The: Bonus Material (2003)

Adventures of Indiana Jones, The: Bonus Material (2003)

Adventures of Indiana Jones, The: Bonus Material (2003)

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Released 21-Oct-2003

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Adventure Main Menu Audio & Animation
Main Menu Audio & Animation
Featurette-Making Of-Raiders of the Lost Ark
Featurette-Making Of-The Temple of Doom
Featurette-Making Of-The Last Crusade
Featurette-The Stunts Of Indiana Jones
Featurette-The Sound Of Indiana Jones
Featurette-The Music Of Indiana Jones
Featurette-The Light And Magic Of Indiana Jones
Theatrical Trailer-Raiders Of The Lost Ark,TheTemple Of Doom,The Last Crusade
Teaser Trailer-Raiders Of The Lost Ark, The Last Crusade
Trailer-Re-issue Trailer - Raiders Of The Lost Ark
Game-Preview - The Emperor's Tomb
Web Links
DVD Credits
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2003
Running Time ?
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Laurent Bouzereau
Studio
Distributor

Paramount Home Entertainment
Starring Steven Spielberg
George Lucas
Harrison Ford
Frank Marshall
Karen Allen
Vic Armstrong
Ben Burtt
Kate Capshaw
Sean Connery
John Rhys-Davies
Alison Doody
Richard Edlund
Paul Freeman
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI Box Music None Given


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
Spanish
Croatian
Greek
Hebrew
Portuguese
Serbian
Slovenian
Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    This is the fourth disc in the Indiana Jones DVD Movie Collection, containing "over 3 hours" of bonus material, which is primarily a set of retrospective documentaries with cast and crew on all three films in the trilogy.

    The bulk of the bonus material forms a feature length set of documentaries collectively entitled Making The Trilogy, so I will review that as the main feature and all the other featurettes as "extras" in this review.

    Making The Trilogy consists of three featurettes:

    All three featurettes include a set of interviews, behind-the-scenes footage, screen tests, excerpts from the films, storyboards, and other material. Each featurette is encoded as 1 title with no chapter stops. I would have preferred some chapter stops.

Raiders Of The Lost Ark (50:51)

    The origin of the concept of Indiana Jones is discussed, as well as casting, including rare footage of a screen test featuring Tom Selleck and Sean Young as Indiana and Marion. Other areas covered include making the sets, costumes, and the filming of key scenes like the opening cave scene (the one with the large boulder), the Ravenwood bar scene, in Belloq's tent, in the Well of Souls, the fight at the Flying Wing, Indy being dragged by the truck, and of course the opening of the Ark.

    Interviews include:

The Temple Of Doom (41:09)

    This covers how the story of the second film grew out of leftover ideas from the first film, plus the screenwriters' fascination with India. Other areas covered include casting, and Harrison Ford's back problem during the shooting, Scenes discussed include the opening dance number, at the village, at the palace, the camp by the lake, the exotic dinner, the bugs scene, the spike chamber, the mine car chase sequence, and the suspension bridge.

    Interviews include:

The Last Crusade (35:03)

    Scenes discussed include the Venice scenes, the young Indiana Jones sequence, in the Austrian castle, in Berlin, in the blimp, being chased around at the borders of Germany, the tank chase, and of course the final scenes.

    Interviews include:

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Transfer Quality

Video

    All the featurettes are in full frame.

    The video quality is variable. The retrospective interviews are, of course, great, as are the film excerpts (presented in 2.35:1 letterboxed), which look like they are taken from the digitally remastered transfers.

    The behind-the-scenes footage is somewhat dated, looking slightly grainy, soft and with faded colours.

    There are several subtitle tracks on the disc: English, Spanish, Croatian, Greek, Hebrew, Portuguese, Serbian, and Slovenian. I turned on the English subtitle track briefly. Dialogue accuracy is okay.

    This is a single sided dual layered disc. The layer change occurs between The Temple Of Doom and The Last Crusade featurette in the Making The Trilogy section of the disc, therefore is not noticeable.

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

Audio

    There is only one audio track: English Dolby Digital 2.0 surround encoded (192kb/s).

    As you would expect, the audio track is acceptable in quality, with clear dialogue and no issues with audio synchronization.

    I am not sure why it is surround encoded - probably for the film excerpts.

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

Extras

    Since this is an extras disc, you better hope it has plenty of extras. Well, it does, but not as much as I would have liked. Where are the deleted scenes and the scripts? The web site does contain a number of additional items, and you need one of the DVDs inserted, as well as the InterActual player installed, before you can access the site.

Menu

    The menus are 16x9 enhanced, and extensively animated with background audio. In addition, there are animated menu transitions.

Featurette - The Stunts Of Indiana Jones (10:56)

    This focuses on the stunt work on all three films. Scenes covered include the Ravenwood bar scene, Indiana being dragged by a truck, coming out of the Obi-Wan night club, and the tank chase scene. The featurette is presented in full frame and Dolby Digital 2.0 surround encoded (192kb/s).

    Interviews include:

Featurette - The Sound Of Indiana Jones (13:20)

    This focuses on the foley effects on all three films. Sounds covered include whip cracks, gunshots, the giant boulder, punches, snakes, the opening of the ark, mine car chase, rats, and earthquakes. The featurette is presented in full frame and Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s).

    Interviews include:

Featurette - The Music Of Indiana Jones (12:22)

    This focuses on the musical score for all three films by composer John Williams. Melodies covered include the theme song, the love theme, atonal music, the Nazi theme, the opening of the Ark, the Thugee ceremony, the trek on elephants, and various themes from The Last Crusade. The featurette is presented in full frame and Dolby Digital 2.0 surround encoded (192Kb/s).

    Interviews include:

Featurette - The Light And Magic Of Indiana Jones (12:20)

    This focuses on the special effects for all three films. Scenes covered include the opening of the ark, the mine-car chase, the Indian village, the Indian palace, the cliff and the suspension bridge, the plane crash through the tunnel, the "leap of faith" bridge, and the accelerated aging of Donovan, . The featurette is presented in full frame and Dolby Digital 2.0 surround encoded (192Kb/s).

    Interviews include:

Theatrical Trailer - Raiders Of The Lost Ark (2:27),TheTemple Of Doom (1:22),The Last Crusade (2:07)

    All trailers are presented in 1.78:1 (16x9 enhanced) and Dolby Digital 5.1 (448kb/s), except for The Last Crusade, which is presented in Dolby Digital 2.0 surround-encoded (192kb/s).

Teaser Trailer - Raiders Of The Lost Ark (1:00), The Last Crusade (1:24)

    All trailers are presented in 1.78:1 (16x9 enhanced). Raiders Of The Lost Ark is presented in Dolby Digital 2.0 (192kb/s), and The Last Crusade in Dolby Digital 2.0 surround-encoded (192kb/s).

Trailer- Re-issue Trailer - Raiders Of The Lost Ark (1:35)

    This is presented in 1.78:1 (16x9 enhanced) and Dolby Digital 2.0 (192kb/s).

Game- Preview - The Emperor's Tomb (1:45)

    This is presented in full frame and Dolby Digital 2.0 (192kb/s).

Web Links

    You are promised an "exclusive web link" if you put the disc into a PC with a DVD-ROM player and install InterActual Player.

DVD Credits

    This is a set of 12 stills.

R4 vs R1

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

    The Region 4 version of this disc misses out on:

    The Region 1 version of this disc misses out on:

    The two versions appear identical apart from foreign language content.

Summary

    The Adventures of Indiana Jones: Bonus Material is the fourth disc in the Indiana Jones DVD Movie Collection, containing all the bonus material.

    The video transfer is variable in quality.

    The audio transfer quality is acceptable.

    The extras are mostly featurettes.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Christine Tham (read my biography)
Wednesday, October 29, 2003
Review Equipment
DVDCustom HTPC (Asus A7N266-VM, Athlon XP 2400+, 512MB, LiteOn LTD-165S, WinXP, WinDVD5 Platinum), using RGB output
DisplaySony VPL-VW11HT LCD Projector, ScreenTechnics 16x9 matte white screen (254cm). Calibrated with Video Essentials/Ultimate DVD Platinum/AVIA. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationDenon AVC-A1SE (upgraded)
SpeakersFront and surrounds: B&W CDM7NT, front centre: B&W CDMCNT, surround backs: B&W DM601S2, subwoofer: B&W ASW2500

Other Reviews NONE
Comments (Add)
Worth it -
Still No Substitute... - Dark Lord (Bio? We don't need no stinkin' bio!) REPLY POSTED
About the video transfer... - Ray Ruggaurs REPLY POSTED
Commentaries... - Mickey Juice
Why no deleted scenes -
Special Effects -
re: Special Effects - Bran (my bio, or something very like it)
re: Special Effects -
Great quality discs, some minor annoyances - REPLY POSTED