Is Warner Brothers Cleaning House?
718 Session | Brooklyn, NY United States | 10/14/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Haven't seen "Just Cause" but "Outland" and "The Man Who Would Be King" were good (not great, good) movies that were TERRIBLE DVDs, they look like they were mastered from VHS cassettes!OUTLAND--3 Stars for the movie, 1 star for the DVDSci-fi fans searching for an overlooked gem should check out "Outland". Taking place at a mining town on Io (Jupiter's moon), the new marshall (Sean Connery) discovers that the station is rife with corruption and sets to clean things up. There are great performances by Connery, Peter Doyle, and Frances Sternhagen. The pacing is set for suspence and the story keeps you interested. But the things that stick and make this worth checking out are the sets and special effects (by the late, great John Stears of Star Wars fame). Criticized at the time for being too grimy, the station seems both realistic and otherworldly--not an easy trick to pull off. The production values for the film (especially the model and matte work) were stellar and stand up very well 20 years later. Throw in a great score by Jerry "Star Trek" Goldsmith and you have a winner.Unfortunatly, the transfer quality of the DVD is astoundingly bad. It's hard to believe that Time-Warner could allow their names to go on this jittery, grainy, shaky, fuzzy transfer--faults that are especially obvious on the DVD. Peter Hymes (2010, Timecop, Capricorn One) may not be John Huston, but a movie that inspired Blade Runner and Frankie Goes To Hollywood deserves better treatment. Extras are skimpy too.MAN WHO WOULD BE KING--4 stars for the movie 1 star for the DVDThe Man Who Would Be King is another overlooked gem. John Huston deserves his place in the pantheon of American Directors (you don't think so? See "The African Queen" or "Treasure of the Sierra Madre"). Adventure without violence, humor without irony, satire without cynicism (well, without much cynicism), you'll find yourself saying "they just don't make 'em like this anymore" about a hundred times; but the movie is only 27 years old! Huston captures Connery, Michael Caine, and Christopher Plummer at the top of their careers. It's an adventure flick, but it is also laugh-out-loud funny.Again, though, the transfer looks and sounds horrible. There is no evidence of quality control. I've gotten better sound from broadcast television. And no, I'm not exaggerating. Extras are OK (lots of trailers).My theory is WB is trying to clear their stock of these abyssmal transfers to come out with either new DVDs or special editions. If you're a videophile, you'll definitely want to pass. If you're looking for good, enjoyable flicks--or if you're looking to round out your collection with some overlooked gems--they're worth getting."
Sean Coonnery Co;;ection
Barry R. Bernstein | 08/23/2005
(2 out of 5 stars)
"The collection was good except that audio for The Man Who Would Be King did not play on my dvd player. I returned it as soon as possiable"