WSR Detailed LaserDisc Review

Dangerous Beauty

Reviewed In Issue 30 Of Widescreen Review® Stars:
Catherine McCormack, Rufus Sewell, Oliver Platt, Moira Kelly, Naomi Watts, Fred Ward, Jacqueline Bisset

WSR Review Scores
Picture Rating: 4.5
Sound Rating: 4.5
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Reference Systems
Critics' Composite Score:
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DVD General Information
(Studio/Distributor): Warner Home Video
(Catalog Number): 14775
(MPAA Rating): R
(Retail Price): $39.98
(Running Time In Minutes): 112
(Color Type): Color
(Chaptered/Scene Access): Yes
(Closed Captioned): Yes
(Theatrical Release): 1998
(LD Release Date):
(THX® Digitally Mastered): No

Credits Information
(Director): Marshall Herskovitz
(Screenplay/Written By): Jeannine Dominy
(Story): NA
(Music): George Fenton
(Director Of Photography):
(Production Designer): Norman Garwood
(Visual Effects):
(Costume Designer):
(Editor): Steven Rosenblum & Arthur Coburn, ACE
(Supervising Sound Editors):
(Re-Recording Mixers):
(Executive Producers): Michael Nathanson & Stephen Randall
(Co-Producers): NA
(Producers): Marshall Herskovitz, Edward Zwick, Arnon Milchan & Sarah Caplan

DVD Picture Information
(Principal Photography): Super 35
(Theatrical Aspect Ratio): 2.40:1
(Measured LaserDisc Aspect Ratio): 2.35:1

DVD Sound Information
(DVD Soundtrack): Dolby Digital Surround
(Theatrical Sound): Dolby Digital
(Theatrical Re-Issue Soundtrack):
(Remastered Dolby Digital): No
(Remastered DTS Digital Surround): No
(Additional Languages):

WSR Narrative Review
Story Synopsis:
Based on the biography “The Honest Courtesan” by Margaret Rosenthal, Catherine McCormack stars in Dangerous Beauty as the beautiful, but impoverished Veronica Franco, a young woman who lives in 16th century Venice. Her heart yearns for the wealthy Marco Venier (Rufus Sewell), but because she can never wed the nobleman, she becomes a courtesan to the rich and powerful, softening her heartbreak while instilling pangs of jealousy in her refuted lover. Her unconstrained wits and poetic gift give her notoriety among the nobles, until the Inquisition denounces her with charges of witchcraft.

LaserDisc Picture:

LaserDisc Soundtrack:
(Surround Bass Below 50Hz): Yes
(Aggressive System Surround): Yes
(Intense 25Hz Bass): No
(Deep Bass Challenging): No
(Aggressive 0.1 LFE):
(Holosonic Soundfield): Yes
(Aggressive Split Surround): No
(Center Back Surround Imaging): No
(Directionalized Dialogue): No
Superb Sound Effects Recording Quality:
Superb Music Score Recording Quality:
Superb Special Visual Effects Quality:
Superb Color Fidelity:
Superb Cinematography:
Reference LaserDisc:
Collector Edition:
DVD To LaserDisc Comparison:
The picture is dangerously beautiful on both LaserDisc and anamorphically enhanced DVD. Images are stylistically soft, but are detailed, especially on the DVD. Color fidelity is naturally rendered with accurate fleshtones, deep blacks and rich and warm colors, including vibrant red courtesan dresses. The interior candlelit scenes are nicely presented, but the LaserDisc can sometimes appear yellow in hue. The LaserDisc and DVD letterbox aspect ratios are framed at 2.35:1, while the DVD anamorphic version is 2.23:1. The Dolby Digital 5.0 discrete DVD and LaserDisc soundtracks are slightly less spatial when compared to the LaserDisc matrix PCM soundtrack. The music is wonderful and well recorded with an expansive soundstage that images deep. Dialogue sounds very natural spatially integrated. Surround energy on the discrete version is de-correlated. Both the discrete and matrix soundtracks are superb, but the matrix PCM is preferred for consistency.