Sin City (2005)

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Released 28-Nov-2005

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Action Main Menu Audio & Animation
Featurette-Behind The Scenes
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2005
Running Time 118:59
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (64:44) Cast & Crew
Start Up Language Select Then Menu
Region Coding 2,4 Directed By Frank Miller
Robert Rodriguez
Quentin Tarantino

Walt Disney Studios Home Ent.
Starring Jessica Alba
Devon Aoki
Alexis Bledel
Powers Boothe
Jude Ciccolella
Jeffrey J. Dashnaw
Rosario Dawson
Jesse De Luna
Benicio Del Toro
Jason Douglas
Michael Clarke Duncan
Tommy Flanagan
Christina Frankenfield
Case ?
RPI $39.95 Music John Debney
Graeme Revell
Robert Rodriguez

Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
Italian Dolby Digital 5.1 (384Kb/s)
English Descriptive Audio 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
English for the Hearing Impaired
Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

Walk down the right back alley in Sin City and you could find anything.

    Sin City is the faithful adaptation of Frank Miller’s highly successful graphic novels "Sin City", "The Big Fat Kill" and "That Yellow B******". The movie consists of three separate tales set in fictitious Basin City, where crime and corruption run rife. The characters in each of the three plots are loosely connected by events and locations.

    The first tale follows Hartigan (Bruce Willis), a police officer who is about to retire after 30 years of service. Hartigan has one last loose end to tie off before he retires - he wants to rescue 11-year-old Nancy Callahan (Makenzie Vega) from a brutal child murderer and apprehend the perpetrator in the process. Unfortunately he has a bad heart.

    In the second tale a brutish thug, Marv (Mickey Rourke), is framed for the murder of a high-class hooker, Goldie (Jaime King). Marv is so hell bent on revenging the one woman he ever cared for that he leaves a string of bodies in his wake. He follows a trail of corruption that leads straight to the highest levels of office within Sin City.

    The third and final tale follows Dwight’s (Clive Owen) plight as he tries to help the “ladies of the night” retain control of Old Town, one of the seedier sections of Sin City. (SPOILER ALERT: highlight with mouse to read) When the girls deal with an undesirable customer in their own way, they discover that they have actually murdered a corrupt policeman, Jackie Boy (Benicio Del Toro). Dwight attempts to help the girls by disposing of the evidence.

    The first thing the viewer notices about Sin City is the comic book style of imagery. All stories are displayed predominantly in black and white, though colour has been used to accentuate different features. Where one story will use bright red to depict blood, another will highlight eye colours with blue or green. The technique is similar to that used in Schindler's List, where the red dress worn by the young girl is a splash of colour in an otherwise black and white movie.

    The comic book style extends to the dynamics of moving objects, like cars and people, and each tale is narrated in the first person by the principal character. This might be off-putting for some viewers but I think it reinforces the overall comic book style to achieve a truly original look and feel.

    Sin City is sure to polarise the opinion of viewers. Some people will view Sin City as slow and arty, while others will see it as a refreshing take on the comic book crime genre. In my opinion Sin City is a winner.

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Transfer Quality


    The quality of the video transfer is exceptional.

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

    The image is incredibly sharp with excellent shadow detail. There is no low level noise.

    Sin City is predominantly black and white, though splashes of colour have been used to accentuate blood, eye colour and occasionally clothing.

    There were no MPEG artefacts apart from some mild posterization that will go unnoticed by most. There is no aliasing and film artefacts are non existent.

    Subtitle streams are available in English, English for the Hearing Impaired and Italian. The subtitles are well placed and easy to read. They accurately reflect the spoken word.

    This is an RSDL disc, with the layer change occurring at 64:44. The layer change was quite noticeable on my equipment.

Video Ratings Summary
Shadow Detail
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts


    The quality of the audio transfer is exceptional.

    There are three audio tracks on this DVD; the default English Dolby Digital 5.1, Italian Dolby Digital 5.1 and English Descriptive Audio Dolby Digital 2.0 (Surround). I listened to both the English Dolby Digital 5.1 and the English Descriptive Audio tracks.

    The dialogue was clear and easy to understand at all times. There were no problems with lip sync.

    The musical score by Robert Rodriguez, John Debney and Graeme Revell is perfectly weighted to enhance the tough, crime filled landscape that is Sin City.

    The surround channels remained busy throughout the movie, creating an environment that draws the viewer into the on-screen action. The many directional cues are well placed.

    The subwoofer is kept busy reproducing car accidents and gun shots. It is used extensively throughout the movie without ever becoming intrusive.

Audio Ratings Summary
Audio Sync
Surround Channel Use


    The DVD is well presented with a small number of quality extras.


    The menu is themed around the movie and it is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1, 16x9 enhanced. The main menu is animated and accompanied by a Dolby Digital 2.0 (Surround) audio track.

Descriptive Audio Track

    Instead of the usual audio commentary track, where you have the director and one or two other cast/crew members discussing the movie, Sin City includes a Descriptive Audio Track which offers an even handed female voice describing the elements and characters within the scene. For example, “He falls to his knees and thumps the ground.” or “Grimacing he stands up.”.

    This is a rather novel approach to story telling that perfectly complements the comic book style of Sin City. In addition to English subtitles for the Hearing Impaired we now have English Dolby Digital 2.0 for the Visually Impaired.

Behind The Scenes (8:33)

    The usual series of short interviews with cast and crew. Of particular interest is creator/co-director Frank Miller, co-director Robert Rodriguez and guest director Quentin Tarnation discussing how the production of Sin City got off the ground. Behind The Scenes is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 and is accompanied by a Dolby Digital 2.0 (Surround) audio track.


    There is censorship information available for this title. Click here to read it (a new window will open). WARNING: Often these entries contain MAJOR plot spoilers.

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 misses out on;

    The Region 1 version misses out on;

    Which version is better? That’s a hard question. Although the Region 1 version contains a dts soundtrack, the Region 4 version's Descriptive Audio Track does have a certain novelty value. I guess I will let you decide which version is for you.


    Sin City has a unique look and feel that is faithful to its comic book heritage. Although this style of filmmaking won’t appeal to everyone, I found that it grew on me with a subsequent viewing. I now look forward to the Sin City sequel that is scheduled for release in 2006.

    The quality of the video transfer is exceptional.

    The quality of the audio transfer is exceptional.

    The extras are a little light on, but rumour has it that a special edition is on its way and that it will include a more substantive set of extras.

Ratings (out of 5)


© Aaron Devereaux (read my bio)
Saturday, December 10, 2005
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-533K, using Component output
DisplayInFocus Screenplay 7200 with ScreenTechnics 100" (16x9) screen. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to Amplifier. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationDenon AVC -A11SR
SpeakersJamo D6PEX wall mounted Speakers and Powered Sub (7.1)

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Comments (Add)
Get the R1 Recut/Extended disk -
r1 recut/extended edition -
Anyone notice problem with dialogue? -
Worth a spoiler alert - REPLY POSTED
Waiting period -
If you want more .... -
The Recut and Extended UNRATED Release due out in Region 1 on 13 December -
comic book available locally -
re: comic book available locally -
The Recut, Extended, Unrated" version looks the goods .... - Richard
The uncut version in R4 -
RE: The uncut version in R4 -
DTS - Ronin