Forrest Gump: Special Collector's Edition (1994)

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Released 8-Nov-2001

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Drama Menu Animation & Audio
Audio Commentary-R Zemeckis (Dir), S Starkey (Prod) & R Carter (Prod Des)
Audio Commentary-Wendy Finerman (Producer)
Featurette-Through The Eyes Of Forrest Gump
Featurette-Screen Tests (7)
Featurette-Building The World Of Forrest Gump: Production Design
Featurette-Seeing Is Believing: The Visual Effects Of Forrest Gump (11)
Featurette-Through The Ears Of Forrest Gump: Sound Design (5)
Featurette-The Magic Of Makeup
Theatrical Trailer-2
Gallery-Photo
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 1994
Running Time 136:17
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (67:00)
Dual Disc Set
Cast & Crew
Start Up Language Select Then Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Robert Zemeckis
Studio
Distributor

Paramount Home Entertainment
Starring Tom Hanks
Robin Wright
Gary Sinise
Mykelti Williamson
Sally Field
Case Amaray-Transparent-Dual
RPI $39.95 Music Alan Silvestri


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
Catalan Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.40:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles Greek
English
Spanish
Hebrew
Croatian
Portuguese
Slovenian
English Audio Commentary
Spanish Audio Commentary
English Audio Commentary
Spanish Audio Commentary
Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement Yes, Dr Pepper anyone??
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    I remember seeing Forrest Gump many years ago at a cinema (that no longer exists) in Perth. Back then, I wasn't a huge movie watcher (my, how things change) but I can clearly recall how thoroughly engrossing the story of Forrest Gump was for me. This story of a simple man and his amazing life that touches upon such extraordinary events is truly fascinating. Forrest is a genuinely honest human being that does amazing things with his sincerity of being. Many people could learn from the behavioural traits of this character.

    Set primarily through the 60s and 70s, the movie weaves a rich tapestry of living, and loving, in this era. Although not old enough to have experienced this for myself, it is still a wonderful insight into those incredible years. The Directors and Producers make constant reference to this movie reliving parts of their own lives and how amazing it is that the doings of Forrest Gump can stir memories in just about everyone.

    Forrest Gump (Tom Hanks) narrates the story of his life to anyone who chooses to listen, while waiting at a bus stop for the number nine bus. The incredible story starts in Alabama with Forrest's mum (Sally Field) and childhood friend Jenny (Robin Wright). The tale weaves through school, university and Forrest's football career, Vietnam, personal tragedy, natural disaster, and prosperity. Entwined throughout this story is Forrest's chance meetings with many famous figures, including Elvis Presley and Richard Nixon.

    Overlaying and forming the backbone of Forrest's life is his love for Jenny. The incredible faith that Forrest has in this love drives him on throughout his life, even with so many disappointments and rejections. It is this love that makes the story and drives home the human emotion.

    Wonderfully written and portrayed, Forrest Gump is a movie that few people don't like. Even after numerous viewings the magic lives on, a truly engrossing tale done justice on this DVD.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The video transfer is mildly disappointing for such a big-name film. Don't get me wrong - it is not bad by any means, but it just should have been a little better. The problems that exist are limited, primarily, to aliasing and telecine wobble.

    Presented in the 16x9 enhanced aspect ratio of 2.35:1, at a very generous average bitrate of 9.8Mbps, this video transfer has all the makings of excellence. As you shall soon see, this is not quite to be.

    Sharpness is acceptable throughout with good levels of shadow detail. Grain is present throughout the beginning of the movie but decreases with time. The grain is not terrible but does detract from the overall level of detail on offer. There was no low-level noise present, and blacks were quite black.

    The colours on offer vary with the different settings of the movie but are generally well saturated. There is nothing worthy of noting down against the colours presented in this transfer.

    Film-to-video artefacts are the major problem with this film. There is quite a lot of noticeable aliasing throughout. Some examples can be found at 7:05 (house) and 69:52 (bus). Telecine wobble rears its ugly head at various times throughout the transfer. Although not bad enough to be glaringly obvious on a TV, it really stands out on a PC player. This is most unfortunate and surprising for a big budget movie. There is the usual spattering of film artefacts on display, but nothing out of the ordinary.

    The subtitles are mostly accurate to the spoken word. I listened to the Audio Commentaries with English subtitles turned on and noticed on many occasions the subtitles leaving out bits of slang and generally doing fixes of grammar. This was mildly annoying.

    This is an RSDL disc with the layer change occurring at 67:00. The change is minimally disruptive and quite well placed.

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

Audio

    The audio on this transfer is perfectly acceptable throughout. Although not overly aggressive, apart from the Vietnam action sequences, it supports the movie wonderfully. Being an almost completely dialogue-driven movie, this is to be expected.

    There are five audio tracks available on this DVD; two Dolby Digital 5.1 tracks at 448Kbps in English and Spanish, two English Audio Commentary tracks in 192Kbps Dolby Digital 2.0 and a Catalan 192Kbps Dolby Digital 2.0 track. I listened to all the English tracks in their entirety.

    Dialogue and audio sync were fine throughout with no noticeable problems.

    Forrest Gump has a very memorable score. The recurring theme is a very moving piece of music that never grows old. Alan Silvestri has certainly excelled himself with this score, suiting the varying moods of the movie at all times. Combined with the excellent score is a collection of contemporary favourites from the era that really add a lot to the movie.

    The surrounds are used sparingly throughout the movie, apart from the Vietnam action sequence and helicopter fly-overs. The audio really comes to life in Vietnam with the incredible action sequence getting the support from the soundtrack it truly deserves. The subwoofer also remains fairly dormant throughout, only getting a true work-out in Vietnam, but what a workout!

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

Extras

    Forrest Gump comes with a bucketload of extras. Including the Audio Commentaries there is over six hours (!) of extras on these two discs. The extras are of excellent quality and certainly kept me entertained and informed for the duration.

Menu

    The menus are very well themed to reflect the simple, yet beautiful, nature of Forrest himself. They open with a language selection screen before moving into the 16x9 enhanced menu system.

Audio Commentary - Robert Zemeckis (Director), Steve Starkey (Producer), and Rick Carter (Production Designer)

    This is an interesting commentary that never stops. Steve Starkey and Robert (Bobby) Zemeckis do the majority of the talking with Rick Carter chipping in some interesting tidbits. The main topics of conversation tend to revolve around casting decisions, set design, location, special effects, and how the movie came about. Plenty of praise is given to the actors, and rightfully so.

Audio Commentary - Wendy Finerman (Producer)

    Wendy Finerman is responsible for bringing Forrest Gump to the big screen. She spends quite some time talking about the numerous revisions the screenplay had to go through before it managed to capture the essence of the book. Wendy has difficulty filling the 2+ hours of the film and there are often gaps while she gathers her thoughts. This is still an interesting and informative commentary.

Through the Eyes of Forrest Gump (30:05)

    The feature is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 with Dolby Digital 2.0 sound. The video quality is quite good excepting aliasing and the audio is acceptable. This is a made-for-TV documentary outlining the story of Forrest Gump, production techniques, interviews, and behind the scenes footage. Movie excerpts are 1.85:1.

Screen Tests

    A collection of 7 screen test for four characters presented in the film. All screen tests are in 1.33:1 with reasonable video quality. The tests with Robin Wright have somewhat worse video quality than the others.

    Michael Conner Humphrey (Young Forrest) and Hanna R. Hall (Young Jenny)

    Robin Wright (Jenny)     Haley Joel Osment (Forrest Jr)

Building the World of Gump (7:15)

    This feature is presented in 1.33:1 with Dolby Digital 2.0 sound. This feature describes the choice of filming locations and why they were so important.

The Visual Effects of Forrest Gump

    A collection of 11 short segments walking through the majority of visual effects found in Forrest. This is a very interesting feature. 1.33:1 video with 1.85:1 excerpts, good quality.

Through the Ears of Forrest Gump

    A collection of 5 segments presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 sound and 1.33:1 video. This is another excellent feature describing the process behind the audio effects in Forrest Gump.

The Magic of Makeup (7:59)

    A featurette on the use of makeup throughout the movie, specifically focusing on Sally Field, Robin Wright, and Tom Hanks. Presented in 1.33:1 video with Dolby Digital 2.0 sound.

Trailers

    The Theatrical Trailer (3:40) and Remember Trailer (1:00) of Forrest Gump. Both have 2.35:1 16x9 enhanced video and Dolby Digital 2.0 sound. The video quality is comparable to the main feature and the audio is acceptable.

Photo Gallery

    A collection of 16x9 enhanced images taken from the set. Excellent quality.

R4 vs R1

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 Region 1 version of this disc misses out on;     The video and audio quality of both is very similar. The R1 transfer even has the aliasing problems in the same places. The R4 did appear to have a little more shadow detail and sharpness. Based on the extra features and better case I would go for the R4 disc.

Summary

    Forrest Gump is an excellent must-have movie presented on a very good dvd with a bucketload of extras.

    The video quality is good.

    The audio quality is very good.

    The extras are excellent.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Nick Jardine (My bio, it's short - read it anyway)
Tuesday, December 11, 2001
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-535, using S-Video output
DisplayRCA 80cm. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationOnkyo TX-DS787, THX Select
SpeakersAll 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)

Other Reviews
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Jeff K's Australian DVD Info Site - Kevin S
region4dvd.net - Darren R (read my bio (fun for the whole family))

Comments (Add)
Finally at a decent price! - Khai L (My biodegradable bio)
Price Reduction -
Is it just me or does this audio track contain no surround sound?!?! - Khai L (My biodegradable bio)
Is it just me or does this audio track contain no surround sound?!?! - Roger (Some say he's afraid of the Dutch, and that he's stumped by clouds. All we know, this is his bio.)
RE Is it just me or does this audio track contain no surround sound?!?! - Stimpy (da, what's a bio Ren?)
Audio quality of Forrest Gump - Jace
Checked again, and still I hear nothing during Vietnam scene - Khai L (My biodegradable bio)
Double Check Your Review -
An even better price - dark nation