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WSR Detailed DVD Review
Rabbit-Proof Fence
Genre: Drama

Reviewed In Issue 73 (June 2003) Of Widescreen Review®

Everlyn Sampi, Tianna Sansbury, Laura Monaghan, David Gulpilil, Ningali Lawford, Myarn Lawford, Deborah Mailman, Jason Clarke & Kenneth Branagh

WSR Review Scores
WSR Picture Rating: 3.5
DD Sound Rating: 4
DTS Sound Rating: NA
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Reference Systems
Critics' Composite Score: 4
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Special Features
Includes an incredible 43-minute Following The Rabbit-Proof Fence documentary and a group commentary track with director Philip Noyce and featuring composer Peter Gabriel, actor Kenneth Branagh, screenwriter Christine Olsen, and author Doris Pilkington.

 DVD General Information

(Studio/Distributor): Miramax Home Entertainment
(Catalog Number): 28090
(MPAA Rating): PG
(Rating Reason):

For emotional thematic material
(Retail Price): $29.99
(DVD Type): Single Side, Dual Layer (DVD9)
(Widescreen Edition): Yes
(Full Screen Edition): No
(Anamorphic Widescreen): Yes
(Running Time In Minutes): 94
(Color Type): Color
(Chaptered/Scene Access): Yes
(Closed Captioned): Yes
(Regional Coding): 1
(Theatrical Year): 2002
(Theatrical Release): Yes
(Direct-To-Video Release): No
(DVD Release Date): 04/15/03
(THX® Digitally Mastered): No

 Credits Information

(Director): Phillip Noyce
(Screenplay/Written By): Subscribe Now!
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  DVD Picture Information

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  DVD Sound Information

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  WSR Narrative Review
Story Synopsis:
In Australia during the 19th century and up until 1970, it was government policy to remove aboriginal children from their families and raise them as white children in orphanges where they would be trained to work as domestic laborers. In 1931 young Molly (Sampi) decided that she wanted to go home to her mother so she walked away from the camp with her two younger cousins, Gracie (Monaghan) and Daisy (Sansbury). Traveling 1,500 miles on foot with no food or water, the girls began their long trek home. Following the "Rabbit-Proof Fence," a fence that was built across the nation to keep out an over-population of rabbits, the girls began their long journey all the while with the government right behind them. Based on the book "Molly's Daughter" by Doris Pilkington Garimara, whose Auint Daisy was one of the three children who made this remarkable journey. (Tricia Littrell)

DVD Picture:
With captivating cinematography and interesting stylistic choices, the anamorphically enhanced 2.35:1 DVD exhibits a color scheme that puts you in the hot Australian outback. Hues can be rich and warm inside the government buildings, or can touch oversaturation with the vivid green brush. Fleshtones are generally well balanced, and blacks are quite deep. While the picture can be sharp and intricately detailed, images can be somewhat soft at times. Pixelization can be a problem, and loss of some finer details is noticed at times. Edge enhancement is not much of a factor. (Suzanne Hodges)

Much of the the Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack is defined by the creative, poignant music score, which also is characterized by a penetrating, prominent low-end presence with sub-20 Hz extension in all channels, and substantial LFE channel engagement. The music also provides for much of the spatial soundstaging, imparting an expansive, enveloping dimensional impression, often with aggressive surrounds. The sonic imaging of the outdoors and other visual environments is also rather notable. The dialogue is a little problematic, with voices seeming to be quite well-recorded but not necessarily compelling in terms of spatial integration. Overall mastering level for the soundtrack is a little higher than expected, and as a result voices sound a little forward. (Perry Sun)