Kiss Kiss (Bang Bang) (Rental) (2000)
Trailer-Don's Plum; Australian Rules; L'Ultimo Bacio
Main Menu Audio & Animation
|Year Of Production||2000|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Start Up||Ads Then Menu|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||None Given|
Twentieth Century Fox
|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|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||2.35:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Okay, so I was taking a wild stab in the dark when I volunteered to review a film called Kiss Kiss (Bang Bang), but the IMDB featured one comment that described the film as Lock, Stock, And Two Smoking Barrels meets Kindergarten Cop. A big claim in the former case, given that it is one of the funniest comedies of the previous century, but one I will let slide for the time being since the lack of any cover art when I received the disc didn't help me in how to approach the film.
Unfortunately, I found Kiss Kiss (Bang Bang) to be a very lacklustre, one-note effort, and aside from one funny joke and a moment that might have worked better if I had any reason to sympathise with the characters, it just didn't entertain me at all. Rather than enjoying the film or laughing at the jokes, I instead found myself thinking of all the ways in which I would have written a better screenplay, or at least some of the things I found in this film that I wouldn't do. For one good example, I wouldn't have made the character of Bubba (Chris Penn) so damned annoying. I think that, more than anything else, is what killed the chance for this film to be either funny or dramatic.
The film begins with Felix (Stellan Skarsgård) and his apprentice, Jimmy (Paul Bettany) hunting down a man and killing him, with Felix writing down the victim's last words for a book that he is compiling. Shortly thereafter, Felix hands his book to Jimmy and announces that he is quitting the business, much to the chagrin of its current leader, a psychotic young man descended from one of the people Felix founded it with. This leader, known as Daddy Zoo (Peter Vaughn), sends his remaining men to kill Felix, while Felix is desperately looking for work of any kind, primarily because he is up to his neck in bills. Eventually, he is contacted by Big Bob (Allan Corduner), a rather eccentric millionaire who waves a lot of cash at Felix while asking him to take care of his son, Bubba (Chris Penn).
It turns out that Big Bob has basically completely cut his son off from the world, and Felix is at a loss on what to do until he starts to introduce Bubba to the real world. With some assistance from his girlfriend, Sherry (Jacqueline McKenzie) and a woman Bubba meets at a nightclub called Mia (Martine McCutcheon), Felix eventually helps Bubba discover the big wide world out there. How he manages to deal with Bubba, and manage the threat of Daddy Zoo's cronies at the same time, is where the film tries to derive its comedy, and this is where it all comes crashing down. There are numerous missed opportunities, and a lot of jokes that just aren't funny - I think I laughed out loud once during this film, and that was only because of a somewhat creative gag with nicotine patches. In other words, view this film at your own risk.
The video transfer is not that much to look at. It is presented in the aspect ratio of 1.33:1, and it is not 16x9 Enhanced. From what I have seen, I am inclined to believe that this is an open-matte presentation, but other information leads me to believe that this is a direct-to-video effort. Interestingly, the IMDB lists this film's proper aspect ratio as being 2.35:1, but I am unconvinced of that. Either way, it is a poor showing that we do not get the correct ratio on this disc.
This transfer is very sharp and detailed, with excellent definition, which is handy for the opening sequence. The shadow detail is very good, and there is no low-level noise.
The colours in this transfer are quite natural and vibrant. No composite artefacts or bleeding were noted.
There are no MPEG artefacts of note in this transfer. Film-to-video artefacts consisted of some terribly persistent and distracting aliasing on such things as diving boards at 0:47, or on the factory machinery at 5:52, where the whole frame appeared to shimmer. There was a particularly nasty instance of aliasing on a car at 15:50, and in this case, the nastier aliasing was the rule rather than the exception. Film artefacts were also quite prevalent, with multiple black and white marks appearing repeatedly throughout the feature. There was literally a sprinkle of them over one actor at 7:21.
No subtitles are recorded on this disc, so hearing impaired viewers may as well give this one a miss.
There is one soundtrack on this DVD: the original English dialogue in Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo, recorded at 192 kilobits per second.
The dialogue would have been easy to understand if a lot of the actors didn't mumble, but often it was quite difficult to make out because of this very problem. There did not appear to be any problems with audio sync. A loud and distracting click type of sound was heard from the right speaker at 7:51.
The music is entirely comprised of contemporary numbers supervised by David Alldridge and Craig Blake-Jones, who managed to put together some music without making it distracting to the film. If I have read the credits right, there really are only six pieces of music in the entire film, anyway.
The surround channels were not involved in this soundtrack.
The subwoofer also had the night off.
|Surround Channel Use|
The menu is animated, accompanied by Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo audio, and it is not 16x9 Enhanced.
When the disc is inserted, trailers for Don's Plumb, Australian Rules, and L'Ultimo Bacio (according to the burned-in subtitles: The Last Kiss) are played back. They are presented in a 1.66:1 aspect ratio with Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo audio, and they are not 16x9 Enhanced. They can be skipped by pressing the Menu button. They are also encoded without any timing information.
This theatrical trailer is presented in the aspect ratio of 1.78:1 with Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo audio, and it is not 16x9 Enhanced. During its one minute and fifty-four second length, I found it was enough to make me pine for the correct aspect ratio (assuming that it is 1.85:1 as I suspect).
Biographies for Stellan Skarsgård, Chris Penn, Paul Bettany, Jacqueline McKenzie, Martine McCutcheon, Peter Vaughn, Sienna Guillory, and Allan Corduner are provided under this menu.
While this Gallery is not annotated, it does contain one feature that I wish all Photo Galleries had - numbering.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
Lucky for them, it does not appear that a Region 1 version of this title is available as yet.
I found Kiss Kiss (Bang Bang) to be a waste of my time and the actors' efforts, which was especially frustrating given that it could have worked if a few small changes had been made to the script.
The video transfer is very ordinary.
The audio transfer is functional.
The extras are minimal.
|DVD||Toshiba 2109, using S-Video output|
|Display||Samsung CS-823AMF (80cm). Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL).|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.|
|Amplification||Sony STR DE-835|
|Speakers||Yamaha NS-45 Front Speakers, Yamaha NS-90 Rear Speakers, Yamaha NSC-120 Centre Speaker, JBL Digital 10 Active Subwoofer|