Tango Bar

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Details At A Glance

Category Musical Theatrical Trailer(s) None
Rating Other Trailer(s) None
Year Released 1988 Commentary Tracks None
Running Time 89:37 minutes Other Extras Menu Audio & Animation
Animated Scene Selections
RSDL/Flipper No
Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region 4 Director Marcos Zuringa

Force Video
Starring Raul Julia
Valeria Lynch
Ruben Juarez
RRP $34.95 Music Atilio Stampone

Pan & Scan/Full Frame Pan & Scan MPEG None
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None Dolby Digital 5.1
16x9 Enhancement No Soundtrack Languages English (Spanish) (Dolby Digital 5.1, 448 Kb/s)
English (Spanish) (Dolby Digital 2.0 , 192 Kb/s)
Theatrical Aspect Ratio 1.66:1
Macrovision ? Smoking Yes
English (burnt into video)
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits Yes

Plot Synopsis

    Well .... where do I begin. This non-English foreign production is an excuse for one tango dance after another, bound together by a dubiously thin "plot", and is basically a load of old cobblers. You would have to be a die-hard fan of tango dancing in the extreme to even vaguely enjoy this "movie". I really haven't got anything more to say about this one, so I'll leave it at that.

Transfer Quality


    This transfer is just a joke, and should never have been released to the public. It would be unacceptable on VHS, and has no place on our beloved discs. "Ugly" doesn't come close.

    Another Pan & Scan mess from Force, this transfer is in 1.33:1 and is not 16x9 enhanced.

    Sharpness is non-existent, as is shadow detail. There is a slight presence of low level noise throughout the movie.

    The colours are truly awful, being sometimes washed out and sometimes oversaturated. Never does the colour look even vaguely natural or clean.

    Now, when it comes to converting film to PAL there are two basic methods. Firstly, the film is sped up by 4% - this has the effect of creating a 1:1 ratio between film frame and video frame, and is a terribly neat solution which Region 1 NTSC producers would kill for. The one downfall is that audio is raised slightly in pitch, however this is a small compromise. Secondly, film frames can be combined and blurred to turn 24 film frames into 25 PAL frames, which preserves the pitch and tempo of the audio. This is the unfortunate method that has been used on this transfer, and it looks god-awful. Panning shots simply fall apart, and MPEG artefacting is rife during these times. Film artefacts are prevalent throughout the movie to one degree or another. Telecine wobble is also evident throughout.

    In a curious disregard for the subtitling system which is part-and-parcel of the DVD format, this transfer has English subtitles burnt into the frame; and particularly bad looking titles they are. Should you happen to understand the Spanish that this movie was made in, you will still have to put up with the English subtitles, which is blatantly ridiculous..


    There are two soundtracks, both Spanish, but flagged to the DVD player as English. One is Dolby Digital 5.1, the other Dolby Surround 2.0. There is little difference between them, however a 5.1 mix is always welcome as an alternative.

    Dialogue was, for me, never clear or understandable because I don't speak Spanish. It was, however, poorly recorded.

    Audio sync was at times poor.

    The music is repetitive and dull, and if I hear another tango tune I will scream.

    Surround presence consists of post-produced reverberation, though thankfully this is kept to a low level and is not intrusive.

    The subwoofer was not used.



    Another Force Video disc with super-duper fully animated, audio-enhanced, animated scene-selection menus. If you are feeling particularly masochistic, you can forward to each of the 15 dance scenes directly. Yippee!

R4 vs R1

    Luckily for them, R1 is not cursed with this title.


    This movie is of the lowest quality, and is utter rubbish. A real stinker.

    The video is incredibly bad, and worth a look just to see how bad it is.

    The audio is unremarkable.

    Nice menus, and thankfully no extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

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© Paul Cordingley
11th January, 2000
Amended 18th January 2000
Review Equipment
DVD Panasonic A350A S-Video output
Display Pioneer SD-T43W1 125cm Widescreen 16x9
Audio Decoder Internal Dolby Digital 5.1 (DVD Player)
Amplification Sony STRDE-525 5x100 watts Dolby Pro-Logic / 5.1 Ready Receiver; 4 x Optimus 10-band Graphic EQ
Speakers Centre: Sony SS-CN35 100 watt; Main & Surrounds: Pioneer CS-R390-K 150-watt floorstanders; Subwoofer: Optimus 100-watt passive