Lucky Numbers (2000)
Featurette-Lucky Numbers-A Look Inside
Audio Commentary-Nora Ephron
|Year Of Production||2000|
|RSDL / Flipper||RSDL (52:32)||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||Nora Ephron|
Paramount Home Entertainment
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||
English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.85:1||Miscellaneous|
English Audio Commentary
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Lucky Numbers was a major box office disappointment for Paramount Pictures and also must have been somewhat of a worry for lead actor John Travolta. After a successful movie comeback with Pulp Fiction in 1994, Travolta now found his name in the tabloids for all the wrong reasons - Lucky Numbers was his third straight box office flop following on the heels of A Civil Action and then the mega-stinker Battlefield Earth. Thankfully, John has been in a couple of better movies since Lucky Numbers. One that springs to mind that I really enjoyed was Swordfish.
Lucky Numbers follows the story of weatherman Russ Richards (John Travolta), who also happens to own a snowmobile business. Unfortunately for Richards and his snowmobile business, Pennsylvania is in the midst of a particularly unseasonable hot spell which Russ does not want. Russ enjoys an opulent lifestyle, complete with the requisite flashy cars, and the mounting bills are making it impossible for him to keep his head above water. He seeks the advice of a colleague who tells him to fake a robbery and claim the money from his insurance company. This he does, but unfortunately the plan goes horribly wrong when his co-worker happens to be on the premises after hours and foils his plan by calling the police to arrest the would-be robbers. Richards is then advised to try and rig the local lottery with the assistance of lotto girl Crystal (Lisa Kudrow) and share the winnings with her. The plan works, but as more people start to learn what they have done, everybody starts looking for a cut of the money. Lucky Numbers also stars Tim Roth, Ed O'Neil and Bill Pullman.
The video quality of this transfer is very good but is not quite of reference quality.
The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and is also 16x9 enhanced.
The transfer is fairly clear but I feel the sharpness is not as good as the best transfers around today - the picture looks quite soft at times and as a consequence details are not rendered as clearly as they should be. Shadow detail was good - I had no problem seeing details in the darker scenes of the movie. Low level noise was not a problem for this transfer.
The colours were very good and looked spot-on. Saturation was excellent, and there was certainly nothing to complain about here.
There were no MPEG artefacts seen and aliasing was not a problem at all.
This disc is an RSDL disc, with the layer change occurring at 52.32. This was well-placed and did not disrupt the flow of the movie.
The audio transfer of this disc is merely average, with certainly nothing special here.
There are two audio tracks on this DVD. The one I listened to was the English Dolby Digital 5.1 track. Also present is a Dolby Digital 2.0 track which is a separate Director's Commentary track by Nora Ephron.
The dialogue was clear and easy to understand at all times and was not a problem on this disc. Audio sync likewise was not a problem with this transfer.
The musical score was unimpressive, and virtually non-existent.
The surround channels were used very little by this soundtrack - they were used mainly for low level ambience and the odd discrete sound effect.
The subwoofer, like the surround channels, was also used very little, and only for the occasional sound effect. Mostly, the subwoofer was silent throughout the movie.
|Surround Channel Use|
This theatrical trailer is recorded in Dolby Digital 2.0 and is not 16x9 enhanced.
Cast and Crew interviews (8.47)
This is a series of interviews with the cast and crew about the making of the film. It is recorded in Dolby Digital 2.0 and is not 16x9 enhanced.
Director's commentary throughout the entire run time of the movie by Nora Ephron.
The Region 4 and Region 1 appear to be identical, but I borrowed a Region 1 version of this DVD from a friend of mine some months ago and from memory it appeared to be sharper than the local version. Nonetheless, I would have to call this one a draw given the cheaper price of the local version.
Lucky Numbers for me was a good movie. Sure, it did not do well at the box office and I think the reason why is that it just seems to be one of those movies that enjoys a better life on the video/DVD market. I certainly enjoyed it and if you are looking for a no-brainer and want a laugh, give this one a go.
|DVD||Pioneer DV-S733A, using Component output|
|Display||Barco 708mm CRT front projector (line doubled) onto a 2.5m wide 16x9 aspect screen. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Meridian 568.|
|Amplification||Adcom 555 mk2 x3|
|Speakers||3 Klipsch La-Scala speakers (left, centre and right); 2 Infinity sm122 speakers (rear); 2 Mirage bps 400 subwoofers with 400w built in amps|