Premier League-Great Goals/The Year in Review of Season 02/03 (2003)
|Category||Sports||Main Menu Audio & Animation|
|Year Of Production||2003|
|RSDL / Flipper||
Dual Disc Set
|Cast & Crew|
|Start Up||Ads Then Menu|
|Region Coding||1,2,3,4,5,6||Directed By||None Given|
|Visual Entertainment Group||Starring||None Given|
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||Full Frame||English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||None|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.33:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||Yes, Sponsor ads.|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Having just reviewed a fairly dull soccer DVD (Manchester United: Beyond the Promised Land), this particular set of discs came as a breath of fresh air. Full of goals and with a decent sprinkling of interviews, the producers of these discs have the balance just right. The set focuses on the English Premier League, and Season 2002/03 in particular. This is a two disc set and for your viewing enjoyment we have:
Disc One: Great Goals 02/03. This is exactly what it says - around 50-odd minutes of the best goals in the Premier League in 2002/03. If you are a soccer fan you will probably remember some of the goals on view here, including (being a Manchester United fan this one is burnt into my memory) Ruud van Nistelrooy running past the whole Fulham team and then sending the keeper the wrong way to score a stunning goal. In fact, Ruud won the Golden Boot for top goalscorer of the season, but there are lots of other great goals on offer here, from Thierry Henry and James Beattie in particular. The only minor complaint I have with this disc is that each goal identifies the scorer, and who they scored against, but sometimes the commentator does not mention who the scorer plays for.
Disc Two: The Year in Review 02/03. This disc has a nice overview of the season in question, which featured a title race that went down to the penultimate game, so there is plenty of excitement all around (and yes, Manchester United won it in the end). This one has a nice mix of goals, interviews and notable news, though there is a little overlap with some of the goals from the first disc, which is only to be expected - at least here you see them in context. There is also a nice cameo for Liverpool fans as they manage to go 11 games without a win at a crucial time in the season.
Both discs are presented by the same team who bring you the weekly highlights show that airs on SBS TV here in Australia, so they are slick and well-paced. As the focus is on goals and the season as a whole, these DVDs should suit fans of any team. I'm not sure why there are two DVDs - the whole shebang could have fitted nicely on one, but I guess they each have a different focus (and you might feel you are getting more of a bargain with two discs). I have been unable to find a definitive RRP, but have seen the discs for around the $35 mark at retail, so I assume the recommended price is $39.95. They are a little expensive at this price, given the running time, but would be a bargain for $30 or less.
Both of the DVDs in this set share the same picture and sound quality, so I will discuss them jointly. The overall video transfer is quite good, though they do show their television origins at times, particularly when the match being shown is in bright sunlight or on a dark winter night.
The aspect ratio on both discs is 1.33:1, non 16x9 enhanced, which is the original aspect ratio as shown on television.
The transfers are generally sharp, particularly the interview segments and the daytime matches. Some of the evening games are dependent upon the quality of the floodlights at the pitch, and so can vary in quality. Shadow detail is generally good, though the TV cameras struggle with the contrast and brightness when the match is half in sunshine and half in the shadow of the stands. There is very little low level noise.
Overall the colours are nice and bright, though the mid winter darkness at 10:22 on Disc One looks suitably drab. There is a nice natural look to the flesh tones during interviews (such as at 6:22 on Disc Two).
The source material for these discs is only just over a year old, so that there is very little to complain about with the picture quality. There is occasionally some minor aliasing on goal nets and in the background during some interviews (as at 5:01 on Disc Two). The only other element of note is that there is some grain apparent during close-up segments shot in low light, but that is hardly unusual for a television camera.
There are no subtitles and no layer changes.
The audio is either the original TV commentary, added music, or a new voice-over for this production. It is all of average quality but sufficient for the purpose.
The only audio track present is an English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo track which I listened to a number of times (these discs are great fun and I have watched them multiple times with various friends already).
Dialogue quality is clear at all times, both during the commentary/narration and during the interviews with players. Audio sync is fine during the latter segments.
The music is basically background muzak accompanying the highlights, and does what it needs to without sticking around any longer.
There is no surround activity and no subwoofer activity, but for a sports highlight show this is really no problem. The added narration is recorded at a slightly higher level than the rest of the audio, which is a slight annoyance.
|Surround Channel Use|
There are no extras, but for once this did not bother me - there is so much great action on the discs that you don't need to see much else.
Animated with music, you can choose to Play the disc or go to Chapter Selection (15 on Disc One, and 21 on Disc Two).
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The Region 1 and Region 2 versions of this set appear identical to the Region 4, which is marginally preferred for reasons of ready availability.
This is an excellent set of highlights discs which covers the best goals and key moments in what was an excellent season of English Premier League soccer (there is no coverage of other competitions like the FA Cup). The video is good television quality, with the audio being satisfactory. While there are no extras, the highlights on offer here will satisfy through multiple viewing. This one is recommended for all fans of the English game.
|DVD||Toshiba SD-K350, using Component output|
|Display||SONY VPL-HS10 LCD projector, ABI 280cm 16x9 screen. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.|
|Audio Decoder||Kenwood. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|