See No Evil, Hear No Evil (1989)

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Released 13-Oct-2003

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Comedy Theatrical Trailer
Featurette-Behind The Scenes
Biographies-Cast & Crew
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 1989
Running Time 97:58
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 2,4 Directed By Arthur Hiller
Studio
Distributor

Sony Pictures Home Entertain
Starring Richard Pryor
Gene Wilder
Joan Severance
Kevin Spacey
Alan North
Anthony Zerbe
Louis Giambalvo
Kirsten Childs
Hardy Rawls
Audrie J. Neenan
Lauren Tom
John Capodice
George Bartenieff
Case ?
RPI Box Music Stewart Copeland


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
French Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
German Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Italian Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.85:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.85:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
French
German
Italian
Spanish
Dutch
Arabic
Bulgarian
Czech
Danish
Finnish
Greek
Hebrew
Hindi
Hungarian
Icelandic
Norwegian
Polish
Portuguese
Swedish
Turkish
Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    See No Evil, Hear No Evil was the second movie co-starring Gene Wilder and Richard Prior. After the success of their first, Stir Crazy, it is surprising it took 9 years for them to do another. I have seen See No Evil, Hear No Evil many times, including at the theatre, on cable TV and when I purchased the Region 2 DVD a couple of years ago. I found it hilarious then and I still feel the same. It has aged much better than I would have expected.

    See No Evil, Hear No Evil is a mismatched buddy comedy with a bit of a twist. Wally Karue (Gene Wilder) is a quiet and conservative news stand owner while Dave Lyons is loud, obnoxious and recently employed by Wally as his shop assistant. While going about their daily work routine they witness a murder. The only catch is that Wally is deaf and Dave is blind.

    Wally and Dave quickly become the prime suspects for the murder. How are they to clear their names? They must escape from the police station, and attempt to identify and then evade the real killers, played by Joan Severence and Kevin Spacey, before solving the murder mystery.

    There are some very funny lines and scenes throughout the entire movie. Most of the comedy is centred around the main characters' impairments and the situations which arise because of them. The storyline is a bit thin at times but is more than compensated for by the almost constant hilarity.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The video transfer is reasonable for its age, but could have been better.

    The video transfer is presented in the original aspect of 1.85:1 and is 16x9 enhanced.

    The transfer is reasonably clear and sharp but on occasion it does suffer from slight grain. The worst examples occur at the very beginning and at 48:25. The shadow detail is good but there are only a few dark sequences and little chance to assess it thoroughly. Low level noise was not an issue with this transfer.

    The colours were clear and constant with no untoward variations evident. The blacks were black and did not waver.

    There were no visible MPEG artefacts. Film-to-video artefacts were well controlled with only minor aliasing occurring at 23:48 and 45:00. Video artefacts were also minimal, with the only major instance occurring at 52:05.

    There are a wide variety of subtitle options available on this disc. They include English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Arabic, Bulgarian, Czech, Danish, Finnish, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Hungarian, Icelandic, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Swedish and Turkish. I sampled the English option and they appeared to be accurate and timely.

    This is a single layered disc and therefore there is no layer change present.

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

Audio

    As with the video, the audio is reasonable but could have been better.

    There are five audio track options available on the disc, English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s) surround encoded, French Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s), German Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s), Italian Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s) and Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s). I listened to the English offering.

    As this is a predominately dialogue-driven movie, the dialogue quality is of prime importance. In this case, it was clear and easily understood at all times. Audio sync was not an issue with this transfer.

    The musical score was written by Stewart Copeland and complements the movie well. The soundtrack does on occasion tend to telegraph the on-screen action but overall is more than acceptable. However, it's easy to tell from the soundtrack that the movie is from the 80s.

    The use of the surround speakers is minimal. As this is a dialogue-driven movie, there are only rare occasions when their use is called for. The subwoofer remains silent throughout.

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

Extras

    The extras are minimal and generally disappointing.

Theatrical Trailer (1:19)

    This is your standard theatrical trailer. It shows seemingly random scenes from the movie in no discernable order. The trailer is presented at 1.33:1 and has a 2.0 channel (192 kbps) Dolby Digital soundtrack.

Featurette-Behind The Scenes (8:02)

    Not your typical behind the scenes featurette. This is more of an extended trailer, with a voiceover and a couple of short interviews with the stars thrown in for good measure.

Biographies-Cast & Crew

    This extra is static and silent. It lists the biographies and filmographies for the main actors; Gene Wilder, Richard Prior, Joan Severance, Kevin Spacey and director Arthur Hiller.

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 DVD misses out on;

    The Region 1 version of this DVD misses out on;

    The Region 2 and Region 4 versions of this DVD are identical. The differences between the Region 4 and Region 1 versions are minor. It just comes down to your preference, PAL or NTSC.

Summary

    See No Evil, Hear No Evil is a very funny comedy starring Gene Wilder and Richard Prior. It has numerous laugh-out-loud moments and is one of the best movies by the pair. Both the video and audio are acceptable without being great. The extras are few and not really worth the effort.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Geoff Greer (read my bio)
Sunday, December 28, 2003
Review Equipment
DVDSony DVP-S525, using S-Video output
DisplayBang & Olufsen BeoVision Avante 82cm 16:9 Widescreen. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderDenon AVR-1803. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.
AmplificationDenon AVR 1803
SpeakersParadigm: Phantom V. 3 Front, Paradigm CC270 V. 3 Centre, Paradigm: Titan V. 3 Rear, Yamaha YST-SW305 Sub

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