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"Rain Man: Special Edition" -- Good DVD, Even Better Film!
, May 24, 2004
This review is from: Rain Man (Special Edition) (DVD)
"Rain Man" reigned in the 1988 "Best Picture" Academy Award, and deservedly so. This film is everything a "Best Picture" Oscar winner should be, in my view. It has tenderness, romance, drama, compassion, likeable characters, and a biting humor as well. It's a "road" picture, while at the same time encompassing so many other things too.
Tom Cruise and Dustin Hoffman give highly-memorable and powerful performances in "Rain Man". Some of the moments in the movie that I find particularly memorable (and deserving of multiple replays whenever loading this up into the DVD Player) include these ............
> The first meeting between "Charlie" and "Raymond", when Charlie finds Ray behind the wheel of his rare 1949 automobile (excellent "first meeting" of these characters).
> The "shorts on the highway" scene.
> "Qantas never crashed".
> The Blackjack scene in Vegas.
> "I like having you for my big brother".
This "SE" release of "Rain Man" includes an enhanced (anamorphic) 1.85:1 Widescreen version of the movie -- and it gets an A+ on my "PQ Report Card". The digital video is beautiful throughout, with radiant colors.
The audio comes through loud and clear via the disc's bold English 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround track. Two foreign-language DD tracks are also part of this DVD -- a 2.0 Surround in French, and a Spanish 2.0 Mono track.
The DVD Special Features are a wee bit on the light side for a so-called "Special Edition". Although, if you like Audio Commentaries, you've come to the right place with this "Rain Man" DVD. Three separate filmmaker Commentary Tracks are featured on this one-disc "SE", including one by Director Barry Levinson.
Other bonus material includes ..........
>> Original Featurette. -- This short bonus is fairly thin on content, but does provide a few comments from stars Dustin Hoffman and Tom Cruise (circa 1988). Not much to sink your "Making Of" teeth into here though. The video for this featurette is Full Frame (1.33:1). Length = 6:55. .... It would have been nice to have had a feature-length "Making-Of" documentary included on this "SE" DVD. But, maybe next time.
>> One Deleted Scene. -- I kind of liked this. This excised scene shows Raymond entering a convenience store, where he begins helping himself to the store's stock of food and beverages (to the dismay of the shop's proprietor). Charlie enters at the end of this short scene to "rescue" Raymond. It's a pretty good scene, but certainly not essential to the storyline; and I can see why it was cut. Especially considering the film's already-lengthy 134-minute final running time. This deleted clip lasts 2:01, and is presented in 1.33:1 Full-Frame ratio.
>> Original Theatrical Trailer. -- A fun and funny trailer. Shown in 1.33:1. Run time -- 2:14.
>> Photo Gallery. -- This Gallery (which *is* anamorphic) is broken up into five different segments.
>> Bonus DVD Trailers.
No "Chapter List" paper insert is included with this DVD. The case looks kind of bare without any insert, I must admit. But, starting in late 2003 (approx.), many studios began to go the "el-cheapo" route on us, and no longer provide physical paper enclosures inside the DVD cases anymore. Gee, you'd think a "Special Edition" release would at least warrant a slim, one-page insert. Oh, well...what are ya gonna do? No biggie really. But I'd still prefer to have an insert for all DVD releases (even if it's only an ad for other DVD products).
Even with the rather skimpy selection of supplements here, this DVD still comes highly recommended by this "Rain Man" fan. The picture and sound quality are dazzling; and the film itself is ... well ... I'm sure you know ..... Oscar worthy! Get this today!
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