The Rage (1997)

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Released 20-Jul-1999

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Action None
Rating Rated R
Year Of Production 1997
Running Time 90:57 (Case: 96)
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By Sidney J. Furie
Studio
Distributor
Norstar Ent Inc
CEL Music
Starring Lorenzo Lamas
Gary Busey
Kristen Cloke
Brandon Smith
David Carradine
Roy Scheider
Case Amaray Variant
RPI $19.95 Music Paul J. Zaza


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Screen, not known whether Pan & Scan or Full Frame English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio Unknown Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles None Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    The Rage was probably a telemovie. At least that's my theory. It didn't get a theatrical release, so it must have gone straight to video or cable.

    What a comedown for Roy Scheider! The man who starred in Jaws, All That Jazz, 2010, Marathon Man, and Blue Thunder, amongst other films, reduced to this piece of rubbish. And he is not even the star - he's just a significant supporting actor. He needs a better agent.

    If you like conspiracy theories, perhaps you might view this movie as someone's very subtle joke. Perhaps someone thought they'd pull together lots of clichés and see if they could sell the idea to studio executives - get a budget, have a laugh. If that's what happened, then maybe the joke's just a bit too subtle. It comes off as a serious attempt to make a thriller.

    The storyline is fairly hackneyed. Take one bright young thing - hot up-and-coming FBI Special Agent Kelly McCord (Kristen Cloke). Partner her with loose cannon Special Agent Nick Travis (Fernando Lamas). Add nasty supervisor Chief Taggart (Roy Scheider). Give them a target - psychopath Dacy (Gary Busey - another actor who needs a better agent), who has been leaving a trail of bodies and bones, and whose pattern is escalating in a way that leads the agents to suspect he is building up to something big. He is a charismatic leader (aren't the psychopaths always charismatic?) of a bunch of ex- government assassins (Phoenix Company) who were being given psychological treatment until the VA cut their budget. Now they are out for revenge (naturally), and there's a convenient bunch of government leaders nearby (of course). Gee - do you really need to watch this one to know what will happen? Well, maybe - there are a couple of slight bends (can't really call them twists), and it isn't too boring.

    There are large amounts of ammunition expended to little effect in this movie. Clearly these highly-trained assassins are not good marksmen, or perhaps their psychological problems have interfered with their understanding of aiming their weapons. The FBI obviously doesn't train its agents in marksmanship, either...

    On the positive side, there is some attractive scenery on display - shame it isn't in widescreen.

    This could have been a mildly entertaining thriller, given a decent transfer. But...read on.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The movie is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1, and is therefore not 16x9 enhanced. If this was intended as a telemovie, then this might have been the intended ratio. There's no obvious misframing, so it is possible.

    The picture is quite clear, and nicely sharp, after some opening grain. There is excellent shadow detail and no low level noise.

    The colour is rather good, with no oversaturation and no colour bleeding. There are some fully saturated colours on display.

    There are a few small film artefacts (a white fleck at 71:51, for example), but nothing major. There are a few moments of aliasing, but they are quite minor. There's a few periods of mild grain, but they are not dreadful. There's a little bit of MPEG shimmer on backgrounds, but you really have to look for it. All up, this is a pretty decent transfer.

    There are no subtitles, which is a shame as they might have helped in understanding the dialogue.

    The disc is single sided (with a lousy label) and single layered, so there is no layer change.

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

Audio

    There is just one soundtrack, marked as Other. It's English Dolby Digital 2.0, but it sounds mono.

    Dialogue is frequently difficult to make out. Some of it is muffled, some is obscured by sibilance, some is just too quiet. Some of it is obscured by music. There are no visible audio sync problems - I don't find that surprising, because it sounds like all the dialogue was recorded on site - that's the only explanation I can think of for the poor quality.

    The score is loud and heavily clichéd. Paul J. Zaza has not worked overtime on this.

    The sound is Dolby Digital 2.0 mono at 192 kbps - no surrounds or subwoofers used.

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

Extras

Menu

    The menu is silent and static, offering just two items - one to play the whole movie and one for chapter selection. There are just nine chapter stops for 90 minutes - nothing like enough.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    I can find no record of this movie being released on DVD in Region 1. On VHS, yes, but not on DVD.

Summary

    The Rage is a fairly poor movie, given no chance on DVD by a lousy soundtrack.

    The video quality is really quite good.

    The audio quality is terrible. Not a lot in the way of crackle and pop, but incomprehensible dialogue.

    The extras are utterly nonexistent.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Tony Rogers (bio-degrading: making a fool of oneself in a bio...)
Wednesday, May 08, 2002
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-S733A, using Component output
DisplaySony VPH-G70 CRT Projector, QuadScan Elite scaler (Tripler), ScreenTechnics 110. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationDenon AVC-A1SE
SpeakersFront Left, Centre, Right: Krix Euphonix; Rears: Krix KDX-M; Subwoofer: Krix Seismix 5

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