Thief of Hearts (1984)

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Released 4-Sep-2002

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Drama None
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 1984
Running Time 95:42
RSDL / Flipper RSDL Cast & Crew
Start Up Language Select Then Programme
Region Coding 4 Directed By Douglas Day Stewart

Paramount Home Entertainment
Starring Steven Bauer
Barbara Williams
John Getz
Case ?
RPI $39.95 Music Elizabeth Daily
Harold Faltermeyer

Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
French Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
German Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Italian Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio Unknown 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

    Thief of Hearts is a rather ordinary and predicable 'midday movie' released on DVD.

     Produced by the very successful Don Simpson and Jerry Bruckheimer, and written and directed by Douglas Day Stewart, this movie looks a lot better on paper than it does on screen. Featuring very 80s music, fashion, and hairstyles, the 'paint by the numbers' plot seems as though it was lifted from a cheap, romantic novel, found in the $2 bin of a book wholesaler: A burglar, Scott (Steven Bauer), robs the home of a couple. One of the items he takes is the wife's, (Barbara Williams'), diary. Scott begins to read the diary and discovers that the wife, Mickey, yearns for a more interesting life. The diary is full of her fantasies and dreams, and soon Scott plans to turn these into reality. Scott uses his inside knowledge to seduce Mickey, and the forbidden romance blossoms.

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Transfer Quality


    The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1, 16x9 enhanced.

    The transfer is generally very grainy. While the sharpness is reasonable, the shadow detail is poor throughout. For example, consider the shot of the car interior at 2:25.

    The image is quite dark throughout, and the colours often appear aged and blemished with a grey/brownish tint.

    MPEG artefacts were not a great problem, but at times the image appeared a little pixelated, and I did notice some slight posterization occasionally, for example at 46:01. Film-to-video artefacts were also not a great problem. There was some mild aliasing, such as the shimmer on the blinds at 43:57, and some slight telecine wobble on occasion. A variety of film artefacts appeared throughout, but most were small.

    There are eleven sets of subtitles present, and the English subtitles are accurate.

    This is an RSDL disc, but I did not spot the layer change.

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


    Apart from the default English Dolby Digital 5.1 audio track, there are also four Dolby Stereo-Surround tracks: French, Italian, Spanish and German.

    The dialogue quality and audio sync are generally fine on the English Dolby Digital 5.1 audio track, but there are a few audio drop-outs.

    The musical score is credited to Elizabeth Daily and Harold Faltermeyer, and it is your classic 80s cheesy synthesiser-based score.

    The audio is very front-heavy, and the surround presence and activity mainly supports the score, for example at 27:32. The subwoofer does likewise, such as the pulsating bass at 33:32.

Audio Ratings Summary
Audio Sync
Surround Channel Use


    There are no extras.


    A very simple menu, presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1, 16x9 enhanced. It is static and silent.

R4 vs R1

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

    This title was released on DVD in Region 1 in April 2002. The two versions are basically the same. I can't say that I would prefer either.


    With some work on the script, and some more character development, especially for the one-dimensional supporting characters, this plot might have had some potential. Sadly, it is a good idea wasted on what should have been a made-for-television movie.

    The video quality is reasonable for its age.

    The audio quality is also reasonable for its age.

    There are no extras.

Ratings (out of 5)


© Brandon Robert Vogt (warning: bio hazard)
Wednesday, August 28, 2002
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-535, using S-Video output
DisplayGrundig Elegance 82-2101 (82cm, 16x9). Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationSony STR DE-545
SpeakersSony SS-V315 x5; Sony SA-WMS315 subwoofer

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