Matrix, The: Collector's Edition DVD Review
PictureThe Matrix's anamorphic 2.35:1 transfer still holds up pretty well today, but it is starting to show its age. In the bright day-lit sequences things look fine, but in the darker sequences, plenty of grain's thrown up which does occasionally result in digital artefacting. Scores 7.
The Matrix Revisited's 4:3 image looks good throughout, although depending on source material the picture quality drops notably in a couple of sequences. Scores 7.
SoundThe Matrix's picture quality might not impress quite as much today as it once did, but you certainly can't say the same about the disc's remarkable Dolby Digital 5.1 audio track. It's not the most subtle mix you're ever going to come across, but the countless gunfights and explosions give plenty of scope for spatial effects and rumbling bass, and boy, this disc delivers in spades! Scores 9.
The Matrix Revisited is more about talking heads and 'live' behind-the-scenes audio than things exploding. As such, the Dolby stereo mix included on the disc is fine. Scores 7.
ExtrasWhen it came to implementing additional features, The Matrix stood for a long time as the most innovative DVD ever. While better discs now exist, it does still leave a fairly good impression. The major extra is the Follow the White Rabbit option which enables you to drop out of the film at key points to view behind-the-scenes material, then there's cast and crew info, three above par featurettes and very extensive DVD-ROM material. The only real omission (but it's a big one) is the audio commentary that featured on the US release. Scores 6.
It could be argued that The Matrix Revisited is nothing more than a massive additional feature for The Matrix, so it's remarkable how many extras there are on this disc. Including: a brief montage of behind-the-scenes footage from The Matrix sequel; a look at The Matrix website; a featurette on the upcoming Matrix anime projects; interviews with some alarmingly hardcore Matrix fans; a featurette on choreographer Yuen Wo-Ping; a behind-the-scenes study of the Bathroom Fight; a music montage with never-before-seen production footage from the film and a host of Easter Eggs (such as an audio jukebox with access to all of the tracks used in the documentary, a study of the Alley Chase scene, an anecdote about the filming of the Woman in Red character and more). For a feature film this would be a good collection of material, for a documentary it is nothing less than staggering. Scores 8.
VerdictA truly impressive Collector's Edition package for one of the most memorable DVD releases of all time.
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