Navy SEALs on the Range is an interesting six minute Featurette hosted by a bunch of real Navy SEALs who describe various shooting techniques and the training required to be a SEAL, as well as offer a brief discussion on what real SEALs would have done when faced with the confrontation depicted in the movie.
Hollywood Humphries & Teague gives us eight minutes background into organising the firearms use for the movie, with insights into working with various weaponry, the dangers of blanks and some revelations about movie gun goofs and how stupid gangster shooting or even cowboy pistol drawing is when compared to real-life military techniques. Easily the most interesting offering, not least because it offers a informative critique of gun use in action movies.
Special Effects: The Dive Sequence takes eight minutes to look at how the effects team put together the underwater dive sequence, using shots of real divers for close-ups as well as models for the longer shots to give a bigger scale to the whole sequence. They go into quite a lot of detail into how they create and use the 'puppets' and this is also a nice offering.
Action Effects: Movie Magic is a ludicrously cheesy voice-over-man-tastic promotional piece that takes eight minutes to wax lyrical about several key action sequences. Using far too many adjectives he narrates the effects expose, which does actually offer some nice insight into the CGI visual effects used for this movie, even if they are not to the standard used now, over a decade later.
One of the most enjoyable extras (as is often the case), we get some Outtakes from The Rock. Lasting some eight minutes, they largely comprise Ed Harris swearing his head off from too many line fluffs, with one memorable outburst from Sean Connery (I don't think he's ever said the 'C' word before on film) and some nice improvisation by Nic Cage. Worth checking out.
Secrets of Alcatraz is an interesting historical Featurette, taking a quarter of a hour to look at the history of the island. Discussing its inhabitants, from the original aboriginals to the Spaniards, it goes on to mention its use as a light-house, an Army outpost and eventually a prison. With plenty of still shots to illustrate, as well as an informative tour of the main building complexes, this is also a nice little offering, which even explores the escapes attempted from Alcatraz, with detailed explanations from those with first-hand experience.
Finally we get a sixteen minute Jerry Bruckheimer Interview, the meatiest offering on this disc. Bruckheimer details his history in making movies, explaining how he got into it, his background in photography and his successes on the Big Screen. With a few nice anecdotes, fans of the producer and his work will be interested in this monologue.
The Rock is a classic action adventure, with some great performances all round by Sean Connery, Ed Harris and Nicolas Cage. It is one of the best of its kind, a fitting final blockbuster from veteran cheesy action movie producer Don Simpson. If you haven't seen this then it is well worth checking out, it has everything - explosions, gunfights, great lines, comic moments and a solid story, all rounded off by stylish direction, a superior score and the aforementioned cast on top form. With the European Blu-rays (first the French then the UK version) released before the stateside equivalent, fans should be chuffed with the enhanced High Definition video and audio, but should also be wary of the fact that the Extras seem distinctly incomplete, with no sign of even the Audio Commentary that was previously included amongst the material ported straight from the DVD editions, let alone any Blu-ray exclusive additions. Still, it will be hard to avoid picking up this title: it's a technically superior version of a superb action adventure that deserves a place in everybody's collection.
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