Of Mice and Men (1992)

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Released 8-Jun-2004

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Drama Theatrical Trailer
Rating ?
Year Of Production 1992
Running Time 106:12
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Language Select Then Menu
Region Coding 2,4 Directed By Gary Sinise
Studio
Distributor

MGM
Starring John Malkovich
Gary Sinise
Ray Walston
Casey Siemaszko
Sherilyn Fenn
John Terry
Richard Riehle
Alexis Arquette
Joe Morton
Noble Willingham
Joe D'Angerio
Tuck Milligan
David Steen
Case ?
RPI $19.95 Music Mark Isham


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
German 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 for the Hearing Impaired
German for the Hearing Impaired
Spanish
Swedish
Finnish
Norwegian
Danish
Greek
Hungarian
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

    This is a classic story based upon one of the great American novels, Of Mice And Men, by John Steinbeck. It has been made into a movie at least five times, initially in 1939 starring Lon Chaney Jr and Burgess Meredith and then twice for American television and once for Turkish television (now that would be interesting). The original film is generally considered to be the best version and was nominated for four academy awards including Best Picture. This version was made for theatrical release in 1992 and was directed by one of its stars, Gary Sinise, who does a good job here both in directing and playing George.

    The story itself is a sad and deeply moving yarn about George (Gary Sinise) who is a good-hearted itinerant worker during the depression in the western states of the US. His travelling companion is a mentally retarded gentle giant called Lenny (John Malkovich) who George promised Lenny's dying aunt he would look after. Lenny is a very nice simple person who does not really understand the world around him and the effect he has on others. He gets pleasure from simple things such as petting animals and thinking about George's story of the farm that they will own in the future. Unfortunately, due to his great strength he often gets George and himself into trouble by hurting things without meaning to. The story opens with George & Lenny needing to leave the ranch they are working on quickly due to one of these incidents. They get work on another ranch which is run by the cruel Curly (Casey Siemaszko) and his father. Other important characters they meet here include Curly's wife (Sherilyn Fenn), who is lonely and abused by her husband and Candy (Ray Walston), an old farm hand, injured in an accident, who can no longer work in the fields.

    The acting in the film is absolutely top shelf with John Malkovich leading the way. His performance as Lenny is excellent and considering the academy's love of actors playing the mentally disabled it is slightly surprising that he was not nominated for an award. Gary Sinise is also very good as George in a film which was obviously a labour of love for him. Ray Walston stands out in the supporting cast with his heartfelt performance, especially during the section of the film involving his dog. Sherilyn Fenn is also surprisingly effective in a relatively small role.

    Overall, this is a well made adaptation of a famous story featuring excellent performances.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The video quality is very good with only some minor blemishes.

    The feature is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.85:1, which is the original aspect ratio. It is 16x9 enhanced.

    The picture was generally clear and sharp throughout, with no evidence of low level noise, although there was some light grain throughout most of the presentation. It was certainly not heavy enough to be distracting. Shadow detail was quite good with night and darkened scenes showing reasonable levels of detail.

    The colour was very good throughout with all colours being well saturated and free from colour bleeding. The skin colouring was very natural. The colour palette of the film is quite muted, mostly in autumnal shades.

    There were a few black & white specks on and off throughout the film, noticeable when you are looking for them but not too bad. Some minor aliasing was also present, such as on the light through the barn at 87:06 and the rifle at 93:21. Neither of these artefacts had any great effect on the quality of the presentation.

    There are subtitles in ten languages including English for the Hearing Impaired. The English subtitles were clear, easy to read and very close to the spoken word.

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

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

Audio

    The audio quality is good, but very front and centre focussed.

    This DVD contains three audio options: an English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo soundtrack encoded at 192 Kb/s, and the same in German & Spanish. The English version would have been the original theatrical soundtrack and is perfectly adequate for a character-driven film such as this.

    Dialogue was clear and easy to understand.    

    There were no problems with audio sync.    

    The score of this film by Mark Isham is quite good and suits the film, however, it occasionally veered too far into sentimentality.

    The surround speakers were virtually not used at all except for some music when played using Dolby ProLogic II.

    The subwoofer was not used.

    

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

Extras

Menu

    The menu included a scene and language selection function.

Theatrical Trailer (2:13)

    The original theatrical trailer is included here and is not a bad one, if these interest you.

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 special edition version of this disc misses out on;

    The Region 1 special edition version is definitely the best choice. Our release seems to be exactly the same as the standard edition in Region 1.

Summary

    This disc contains an very good adaptation of a classic novel featuring excellent performances.

    The video quality is very good.

    The audio quality is good.

    The disc has only the theatrical trailer as an extra, which is shame for a film of this calibre.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Wednesday, June 16, 2004
Review Equipment
DVDToshiba 1200, using Component output
DisplaySony FD Trinitron Wega KV-AR34M36 80cm. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL)/480i (NTSC).
Audio DecoderBuilt in to DVD Player, Dolby Digital and DTS.
AmplificationPioneer VSX-511
SpeakersBose 201 Direct Reflecting (Front), Phillips SB680V (Surround), Phillips MX731 (Center), Yamaha YST SW90 (Sub)

Other Reviews NONE
Comments (Add)
A poor quality disc - Mark from Dural REPLY POSTED