Holes (2003)

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Released 17-Aug-2004

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Family Main Menu Introduction
Main Menu Audio & Animation
Audio Commentary-Cast
Audio Commentary-Director And Writer
Featurette-The Boys Of D-Tent
Featurette-Digging The First Hole
Deleted Scenes-6
Outtakes
Music Video-D-Tent Boys - 'Dig It'
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 2003
Running Time 112:33
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (78:01) Cast & Crew
Start Up Language Select Then Menu
Region Coding 2,4 Directed By Andrew Davis
Studio
Distributor

Walt Disney Studios Home Ent.
Starring Sigourney Weaver
Jon Voight
Tim Blake Nelson
Shia LaBeouf
Khleo Thomas
Jake M. Smith
Byron Cotton
Brenden Jefferson
Miguel Castro
Max Kasch
Noah Poletiek
Zane Holtz
Steven Kozlowski
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI ? Music Byron Cotton
Brenden Jefferson
Max Kasch


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 (384Kb/s)
French Dolby Digital 5.1 (384Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 1.0 (96Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 1.0 (96Kb/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
English for the Hearing Impaired
Spanish
Danish
French
Finnish
Swedish
Icelandic
Norwegian
Spanish Titling
French Titling
Spanish Audio Commentary
Danish Audio Commentary
French Audio Commentary
Finnish Audio Commentary
Swedish Audio Commentary
Norwegian Audio Commentary
Spanish Audio Commentary
Danish Audio Commentary
French Audio Commentary
Finnish Audio Commentary
Swedish Audio Commentary
Norwegian Audio Commentary
Smoking Yes, Very briefly
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits Yes

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

Plot Synopsis

     Stanley Yelnats IV is a very unusual boy who comes from a very unusual family, and this is a rather unusual kids' film. Stanley (Shia LeBeouf) and his family have all apparently been living under a curse since great great grandfather made an omission in his mission for Madame Zeroni (played gloriously by the inimitable Eartha Kitt.) As his father (none other than Henry Winkler) dejectedly continues his search for the perfect solution to foot odour, Stanley finds himself accused of the heinous crime of stealing a pair of shoes from a baseball hero which were destined for auction in a children's charity event.

     Despite his protestations of innocence, he finds himself in court and off to an 18 month stint at Camp Green Lake - a detention camp for troubled youth. Here, Stanley and his bunch of mates suffer under the hands of Mr Sir (John Voight), Dr Pendanski (Tim Blake Nelson) and the brutal Warden (Sigouney Weaver), who has an ulterior motive for making the boys dig eternal numbers of holes that goes way beyond her interest in building their character. This film interweaves a number of tales - Stanley's trials at the camp, the saga of his great great grandfather, and the mysterious connection with Kissin' Kate Barlow warp and weave through the story until all is finally revealed in its denouement.

     The source material for this film comes from a book by Louis Sachar which apparently was a sensational hit with the preteen American market. Wisely, director Andrew Davis seconded Sachar to write the film script as well. I confess to not being a great fan of the kind of genre that Davis normally produces, wham bang pieces like Collateral Damage and The Fugitive are not my preferred choice; and perhaps some of the subtlety that was potentially in the story may have been lost. But what Davis does understand is action, pace and teen vernacular and, with a few notable hiccups, this movie does roll along at a cracking pace. Voight, Nelson and Weaver all seem to be having a fine time, and there was a cheeky soundtrack nod for fans of O Brother Where Art Thou (in which Nelson shone) by the inclusion of the song Down to the River to Pray.

     Seeing a distinctly greying Winkler was also a timely reminder to all that time is a'passin'!

     All in all, this is a better than average kids' movie, aimed predominantly at the prepubescent market.

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Transfer Quality

Video

     The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.85:1 16x9 enhanced.

     The print is generally clear and clean, with good levels of luminance and shadow detail. Low level noise is nonexistent and grain levels are generally fine and very acceptable.

     The colour palette is well-defined and clean with no halation present.

     With the exception of some minimal aliasing and mild motion blur, this print is very clean and free of MPEG or film artefacts.

     Subtitles are clean, clear and accurate.

     This disc is an RSDL disc, with the layer change placed at 78:01. There is virtually no disruption to the presentation.

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

Audio

     There are four audio tracks on this DVD. The default is English Dolby Digital 5.1 with additional main audio offerings in Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 and French Dolby Digital 5.1. The commentary is available in English Dolby Digital 1.0.

     The dialogue was clear and easy to understand at all times.

     Audio sync was not a problem at all with this transfer, and was completely spot on.

     The musical score is a rollicking good ride. Aside from the cheeky references previously alluded to, there are original contributions from the young cast members themselves in a lively and varied soundtrack.

     Surround presence throughout the film was excellent - with a very distinct soundscape immersing one in the action.

    Subwoofer activity was similarly appropriately present, providing several good booms to keep you on your toes.

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

Extras

     A generous selection of extras are on offer.

Menu

     The menu design is themed around the movie. It is 16x9 enhanced. The main menu features an animated clip from the movie and Dolby Digital 2.0 surround-encoded audio.

Featurette - Boys of D Tent (10:38)

     A little love fest of interviews and behind the scenes snippets. Jolly good fun really.

Featurette - Digging the First Hole (9:05)

     A behind the scenes look at the film.

Deleted Scenes

     Six scenes to choose from.

Gag Reel

     It's a bit lame, but kinda charming in a geeky way.

Commentary (Cast)

     It's intensely exuberant and lively, though not particularly illuminating.

Commentary (Director & Writer)

     Andrew Davis and Louis Sachar discuss the film from a more sedate but more technically enlightening space. Quite entertaining.

D Tent Boys' Music Video

     Dig It - and it's kind of fun!

R4 vs R1

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

     Both versions are the same in content and extras so they are equally good, and there is no compelling reason to prefer one over the other, apart from regional choices.

Summary

     A fine romp of a film ideal for the preteens.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Mirella Roche-Parker (read my bio)
Monday, May 31, 2004
Review Equipment
DVDSinger SGD-001, using S-Video output
DisplayTeac 76cm Widescreen. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationTeac 5.1 integrated system
SpeakersTeac 5.1 integrated system

Other Reviews
DVD Net - Martin F (read my bio)

Comments (Add)
Thanks for actually listing the R4 vs R1 differences...real helpful. (Yes, I'm using irony here.) - Uncanny Antman
no... you're using sarcasm. - Anonymous
Not that this is the place to get into it, but... - Uncanny Antman
....... - Anonymous
Sheesh. - Uncanny Antman REPLY POSTED