Stiff/The Brush Off (Shane Maloney Box Set)-Extras Disc (2004)
|Category||Drama||Main Menu Audio & Animation|
|Year Of Production||2004|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||1,2,3,4,5,6||Directed By||None Given|
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||English Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||Varies||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
If you purchase both of the Murray Whelan films, Stiff and The Brush Off, as part of the box set that is available, you get a third disc given over solely to bonus material. What we have here is really one long making of featurette that has been divided into a few smaller ones and placed on a main menu (thankfully there is a play all option).
The content on this disc runs for 47:42 and contains six sections:
The author of the original Murray Whelan novels, Shane Maloney, candidly discusses the creation of the books and how his ideas have progressed from page to screen. He seems genuinely pleased with the finished films and hints that some of his other books might possibly make the transition to film. Book publisher Michael Heyward also contributes his ideas about why the books have proved popular and how special the character of Murray Whelan is.
Producer Jay Cassells, screenwriter John Clarke and author Shane Maloney discuss in interview and with a Melbourne University class just how challenging it is to convert something from the written page to the screen.
Directors John Clarke (Stiff) and Sam Neill (The Brush Off) discuss their experiences in the directors chair. Topics included budget constraints and the lottery that is the process of casting. Neill seems genuinely amazed that Mick Molloy has pulled off the role of the politician and minister.
An almost irreverent take on directing from the dead-pan John Clarke. In a manner that only he can, he tries to explain what his role was during the filming of Stiff. Other than making tea it seems he didn't do much.
A round table discussion with the two directors of the movies (John Clarke and Sam Neill) and the lead actor David Wenham. They discuss all the usual aspects of the films, the cast and the characters.
The most serious and technical of the sections, this sees John Clarke in an edit suite explaining the differences between shots and takes on a certain scene in Stiff. Good from a film making angle, but probably a little brief to be of any real use.
The video transfer here is quite good, though with some of the source material obviously being a cheaper hand-held video camera it is not going to be as good as the finished films. It is presented in a combination of aspect ratios, with some of the sections being 1.78:1 and others 1.33:1. The transfer is also 16x9 enhanced with the 1.33:1 material appearing with black borders down the left and right hand sides of the screen.
All the vision is at least of average sharpness while the detail level is consistently good throughout. There is some minor edge enhancement on a couple of the sections (the round table discussion with the directors is where it is most notable). There are absolutely no problems with shadow detail. The image is grainer than the films but it really doesn't spoil the picture.
The colours are excellent with even saturation and shading.
There are no MPEG artefacts and video artefacts are also absent.
Unfortunately, there are again no subtitles available at all on this disc.
The disc is single layered so there is no layer change.
There is just one audio soundtrack on this disc, an English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo soundtrack encoded at the bitrate of 224 Kb/s. It is really not required to do a great deal with much of the content merely interview grabs and the like.
Dialogue is handled well and there are no audio sync issues.
There is no surround or subwoofer use.
|Surround Channel Use|
This is not really an extra since the whole disc is in itself one big extra.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
This title has not been released in Region 1.
Purchase Stiff and The Brush Off in the box set and you'll score this third disc of extras. It contains a 47 minute featurette broken into six chapters covering many of the film-making aspects and featuring interviews with all the key players.
The video quality is fine for what is really an extra while the audio is also more than adequate.
|DVD||Denon DVD-3910, using RGB output|
|Display||Loewe Calida (84cm). Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL).|
|Speakers||Front - B&W 602S2, Centre - B&W CC6S2, Rear - B&W 601S2, Sub - Energy E:xl S10|