American Psycho II (2002)
Main Menu Audio & Animation
|Year Of Production||2002|
|Running Time||84:51 (Case: 88)|
|RSDL / Flipper||RSDL (54:53)||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||Morgan J. Freeman|
Universal Pictures Home Video
Geraint Wyn Davies
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||
English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.78:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
So what exactly is American Psycho II then? It is a direct-to-video attempt at a teen slasher with little in the way of gore, no nudity (two areas where those expecting something like the original will be greatly let down) and where the identity of the killer is revealed on the movie poster. It is also extremely bad. The problems start from the first few seconds when it becomes apparent that the lead actress (the All American Girl - and psycho - of the title) has possibly the most annoying and grating voice since Jo-Beth Taylor. It just compounds from there when all acts of violence are censored (hands poised followed by quick cuts), and it becomes apparent that there is nothing behind this movie - unlike the original, this movie is not making any statement of any sort (well, apart from how very lame sequels can encourage people to watch them through a name association).
The plot starts with an eleven-year-old girl watching as Patrick Bateman begins to slice his baby-sitter to pieces (guess that answers the question left carefully ambiguous at the end of the original - a very cheap trick). After freeing herself, she finishes Bateman off with an ice pick, and then decide to dedicate her life to ridding the world of other psychopaths. Cut to six year later, and the young girl has grown into Rachael Newman (played by Russian-born Katie Holmes look-alike Mila Kunis), a college student studying criminal profiling under former FBI great Robert Starkman (a fun performance from William Shatner). To achieve her dream of being accepted into the FBI training academy at Quantico, she wants to become Starkman's Teaching Assistant for the next semester. To her thinking there are three others in the running, and it really isn't giving anything away to say that she will do anything - even murder - to make sure she gets what she wants.
To be fair, the performances are actually not all that bad. Shatner hams it up in his usual style as the somewhat lecherous Professor, while Kunis - grating voice aside - is appropriately enthusiastic as the titular psycho. Geraint Wyn Davies also provides a solid anchor as the "straight-man" in this black comedy. The problem for the actors is the script - they are fighting as hard as they can with twigs while their enemies carry swords. The script is so pathetic that it is almost a surprise that it was approved. On its own, this would have been a bad movie, but tied into the original American Psycho it is a truly terrible movie. Stay well away.
Presented at 1.78:1 (which was the shooting aspect ratio), this transfer is 16x9 enhanced.
This transfer is nicely sharp, with more than enough detail represented. There is almost no grain present, with the only visible grain being during stylised "flashback" sequences and the like, such as at 26:24. Shadow detail is excellent with the darker scenes being easily visible. There was no low-level noise.
Colours are good. The highlights come out well, while the college environments appear rich and appropriate.
The only compression artefacts come in the form of some "motion-trails" from 59:30 to 59:38. Aliasing does not get off quite so easily, with an abundance of medium level aliasing, and a number of bad instances, such as on the shirt and glasses of Keith from 37:40 to 38:54, and the rail at 39:51. Film artefacts are also a constant presence, and although all are small, such as at 14:31 and 60:58, they are frequent enough to be annoying.
There are no subtitles present on this disc.
This is an RSDL formatted disc with the layer change taking place at 54:53. It is reasonably well placed on a fade-to-white, but the drop in audio still announces it.
There are four soundtracks present on this disc, being the original English dialogue in both Dolby Digital 5.1 (at 448 Kbps) and Dolby Digital 2.0 surround (at 224 Kbps), and two audio commentary tracks, both in Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo (at 224 Kbps).
Dialogue is clear and easy to understand at all times, and this is aided by the clear and clean recordings. Audio sync is likewise never a problem, remaining spot-on throughout the movie.
The music falls into two categories, the score by Norman Orenstein and a collection of contemporary pieces. The score is actually very effective, and recalls some of the themes from the original. The contemporary pieces work relatively well, and are chosen well to match the genre - there is no rap/R&B to be found here - favouring "girly" pop-rock.
The surround channels are not exactly worked very hard. They provide some minor ambience and help out with the music a little. They also carry some of the larger effects, but for the most part are rather dormant, leaving the bulk of the work up to the front three speakers. Both the 5.1 and 2.0 surround tracks sound very similar, and there is little to tell them apart. Dialogue in the 5.1 track is a little more solid due to the dedicated centre channel, but apart from that there really seems to be no difference.
The subwoofer is used sparingly, largely only backing up the music on occasion, although there are one or two sound-effects that it does help out with. To be fair though, this is not exactly a soundtrack that lends itself to large amounts of low frequency sound.
|Surround Channel Use|
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The Region 4 version of this disc misses out on;
The video quality is serviceable, although for a recent film that never made it to the cinemas, it is rather disappointing.
The audio is extremely front-heavy, but otherwise does its job, if very unspectacularly.
The extras are quite extensive for the nature of the film, and are a nice inclusion. Unfortunately, they can do nothing to make the main feature more attractive.
|DVD||Pioneer DV-535, using Component output|
|Display||Loewe Xelos 5381ZW. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Amplification||Onkyo TX-DS787, THX Select|
|Speakers||All matching Vifa Drivers: centre 2x6.5" + 1" tweeter (d'appolito); fronts and rears 6.5" + 1" tweeter; centre rear 5" + 1" tweeter; sub 10" (150WRMS)|