25th Hour DVD Review
PicturePresented in 2.35:1 Anamorphic Widescreen and THX certified the image is very good indeed. The main feature time line footage is excellent with plenty of detail and well saturated colours with strong blacks. Flashback footage is lower stock film and has noise and grain which is deliberate and used to good effect. A few problems were seen from time to time, such a edge enhancement and slight pixilation problems, but nothing that distracts from the overall image, or the beautiful and haunting cinematography.
SoundPresented in Dolby Digital 5.1, the soundtrack is functional and adds an enveloping feel to outdoor footage. Dialogue is clear and fixed firmly on the screen and the excellent score is richly dynamic and clear. And then the shocker! About three quarters of the way in, we enter a nightclub to celebrate Monty's final night, and there is a superstar hip hop DJ playing tonight, at this point the soundtrack just lifts the house. The bass extension during Grandmaster Melle Mels “White Lines” just pressurises the entire room, with stereo panning of scratch mixing on the rear channels, and then Norton's voice goes on a trip around the speakers as well! This has to be the most intelligent use of surround mixing I have heard in some time, yet at no point are you distracted from the dialogue which is still clear, even though the main characters are drunk and slurring their speech. The entire scenes in the club just have such a real world feel about them, you are actually sitting on the seats next to the characters, brilliant stuff indeed.
ExtrasIncluded as extras are an interesting 20 minute look at Spike Lee's career featuring interview footage with some of his past collaborators. We get six deleted scenes, which although interesting it is clear to see why they were dropped. Next is 5 minutes of truly haunting footage of Ground Zero, and finally there are two audio commentary tracks. Both are extremely interesting, although Spike Lee does dry up now and again leaving large gaps in his commentary. A good little package of extras.
VerdictA fascinating movie with some spellbinding performances, great picture, fabulous sound and interesting extras. Highly recommended even if just a rental viewing.
Suggested retail price when reviewed: £29.99