Lost & Found (1999)

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Released 19-Dec-2003

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Romantic Comedy None
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 1999
Running Time 95:35
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 2,4 Directed By Jeff Pollack
Studio
Distributor

Warner Home Video
Starring David Spade
Sophie Marceau
Patrick Bruel
Artie Lange
Mitchell Whitfield
Martin Sheen
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI $14.95 Music John Debney


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (384Kb/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
English for the Hearing Impaired
Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits Yes, during credits

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

Plot Synopsis

    David Spade is one of those actors you either like or don't like. There is simply no middle ground when it comes to his "style" of humour. Unfortunately, I fall into the "don't like" camp in a humungous way. So, why exactly am I reviewing a film in which he has a writing credit as well as the top billing? Well, Sophie Marceau is a very nice distraction and a very decent antidote to David Spade. Besides, the DVD had been stuck on the dud list for a while and I had time over Easter to do some reviewing - and believe me there are way worse prospects on the dud list than this one...

    It is not exactly the most original story that you will ever see, but even banal can be raised if you have the right people to pull it off. Well, one out of two ain't bad... The banal can even be raised if you can give the story a bit of a twist, or something a little bit different. Unfortunately, that is where the film ultimately fails to make the grade - I spent most of the time trying to pick which film scenes had previously come from. There's Something About Mary is pretty much at the top of the list...

    Restaurateur Dylan Ramsey (David Spade) has a slight problem when it comes to his girlfriends. They don't last, and his latest has just given him the flick - moments before he was about to do the same to her. So he mopes off home via his restaurant for just enough time to introduce some of the weird characters he employs, his partner and the need for them to get the loan to expand the business. So he drags himself home and whilst perving at the Victoria's Secret catalogue he is literally mown down by his new next door neighbour. French, gorgeous and apparently available, cellist Lila Dubois (Sophie Marceau) is once again trying to rein in her dog Jack, an inveterate wanderer and escapee. His brief encounter has a profound effect upon Dylan - well at least as profound an effect as Dylan ever could have. All he wants to do is be with her. For once in his life he might just have found the right woman. So when Jack "disappears" once again, Dylan volunteers to find the little pooch. Of course, it is pretty easy to volunteer to find a pooch that you have in fact dognapped. Its all part of the plan to spend time with Lila so that she can discover that Dylan is in fact a really sweet guy and absolutely perfect for her, despite the fact that she is sophisticated, beautiful, talented - and with a former fiancé in rich, handsome René (Patrick Bruel) in the United States to try and get Lila back. Nothing seems to go right of course, especially when Jack apparently eats a valuable ring that was given to Dylan for safe-keeping. So just how does this pan out?

    Whilst the story is not that great, and there are just way too many references to There's Something About Mary, ultimately the truth is that there is just enough here to raise a chuckle or two. Okay, you will not find much in the way of serious quality acting, but David Spade certainly is reasonably charming here and there is no doubting that Sophie Marceau adds a huge degree of interest to proceedings and together it sort of works enough to fill in a lazy Saturday night when nothing more than some mindless entertainment is necessary.

    Under the right circumstances - and Saturday night mindless entertainment is certainly one of those - the very derivative nature of the whole thing can be ignored and the result can be enjoyed. By no means the worst film you will ever see, but equally just don't expect too much from it.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1, and it is 16x9 enhanced. This is ever so slightly different to the theatrical aspect ratio of 1.85:1 but hardly of great concern.

    It is a fairly solid transfer in all respects: quite decently sharp, quite well detailed, quite clear and free of grain and with decent shadow detail. Whilst we could certainly have hoped for a lot better, with the budget tossed at this film, what we have is more than acceptable and unlikely to raise too many hackles.

    The colours are nicely handled too, rather well saturated and with a very natural, quite vibrant look to them. Everything looks right and there is no issue with oversaturation or colour bleed.

    Most left to right movement in shots exhibits some form of resolution loss but I am guessing that this is inherent in the source material as opposed to being introduced in the authoring. Unfortunately there is a consistent, albeit relatively minor issue with aliasing throughout the transfer and this is readily seen in the cello at 15:05, the car at 29:35 and the building at 65:31. There is also a deal of moiré artefacting in the blinds in Dylan's apartment as seen at 23:02, 29:51, 34:18 and 47:13. It too is nothing major but is certainly noticeable. Film artefacts are kept to a minimum and are mostly of the small black speck variety that are barely noticed.

    This is a single sided, single layered DVD so there is no layer change to worry about.

    There are just two subtitle options on the DVD, both of them being English efforts. There is nothing wrong with them as far as I could tell from the samples I made.

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

Audio

    The only available soundtrack on the DVD is an English Dolby Digital 5.1 effort.

    Dialogue comes up well in the transfer and is easy to understand. There did not appear to be any audio sync problems with the transfer.

    The original music score comes from John Debney. It is a reasonable enough effort, but is pretty well dominated by the song choices made for the film.

    There is not much to say about the soundtrack. Clean, clear and without any significant problems, it is decent enough but hardly a state of the art demonstration of the surround sound experience. Obviously dialogue driven humour does not require a fat lot in the way of sound, so what we get here is pretty much exactly what I was expecting. There is little in the way of obvious rear surround encoding other than some ambience and music, with the front surrounds used mainly for spreading the soundscape a little and adding a bit of body to the sound. The bass channel gets used but not really in any exemplary way.

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

Extras

    Since this comes in Warner Home Video's budget price range, I guess anything in the way of extras was asking way too much.

Menu

    Basic stiff with the highlight suffering somewhat from dot crawl - seemingly a common problem with these budget price releases from Warner Home Video based upon the releases I have seen.

R4 vs R1

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

    The equivalent Region 1 release hit the streets over four years ago, and is just a little different from the Region 4 release we now have. Aside from being a double sided disc with a widescreen presentation on one side and a Full Frame version on the other side, it also features a theatrical trailer, a cast bio for David Spade and an additional French soundtrack. It might not be much but it makes the Region 1 release the version of choice now, just as it has been for over four years.

Summary

    It ain't There's Something About Mary and never will be, but Lost & Found ended up being a bit better than I expected. At the price point it can be picked up in the discount department stores at, it might be worthwhile checking out - especially if you are a fan of David Spade. Aside from the total lack of extras, there is nothing much awry with the DVD technically speaking. I don't know why this copped an M rating so don't be put off by that at all - this is barely PG stuff.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Ian Morris (Biological imperfection run amok)
Wednesday, April 21, 2004
Review Equipment
DVDDenon DVD-1600, using RGB output
DisplayLoewe Aconda 9381ZW. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationYamaha RXV-795
SpeakersEnergy Speakers: centre EXLC; left and right C-2; rears EXLR; and subwoofer ES-12XL

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