WSR Detailed LaserDisc Review


Reviewed In Issue 34 Of Widescreen Review® Stars:
Vince Vaughn, Julianne Moore, Viggo Mortensen, William H. Macy, Anne Heche

WSR Review Scores
Picture Rating: 3.5
Sound Rating: 4.5
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Reference Systems
Critics' Composite Score:
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DVD General Information
(Studio/Distributor): Universal Studios Home Video
(Catalog Number): 44422
(MPAA Rating): R
(Retail Price): $34.98
(Running Time In Minutes): 104
(Color Type): Color
(Chaptered/Scene Access): Yes
(Closed Captioned): Yes
(Theatrical Release): 1998
(LD Release Date):
(THX® Digitally Mastered): No

Credits Information
(Director): Gus Van Sant
(Screenplay/Written By): Joseph Stefano
(Story): NA
(Music): Bernard Herrmann
(Director Of Photography):
(Production Designer): Tom Foden
(Visual Effects): Illusion Arts, Inc.
(Costume Designer): Beatrix Aruna Pasztor
(Editor): Amy E. Duddleston
(Supervising Sound Editors): Kelley Baker
(Re-Recording Mixers):
(Executive Producers): Dany Wolf
(Co-Producers): NA
(Producers): Brian Grazer & Gus Van Sant

DVD Picture Information
(Principal Photography): Academy Standard Flat
(Theatrical Aspect Ratio): 1.85:1
(Measured LaserDisc Aspect Ratio): 1.85:1

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

WSR Narrative Review
Story Synopsis:
Revisit the Bates Motel in this scene-by-scene remake of Alfred Hitchcock’s classic thriller Psycho. When Marion Crane (Heche) skips town with a handful of her boss’s money, she makes the ill-fated choice of stopping for the night at a strange little motel run by the even stranger Norman Bates (Vaughn) and his “mother.” Based on the novel by Robert Bloch.

LaserDisc Picture:
The 1.85:1 LaserDisc is sharp and detailed with excellent fine detail and definition. Color fidelity is nicely rendered with accurate fleshtones, rich and warm color and deep blacks. Contrast and shadow delineation are superb. Sometimes the picture appears slightly plugged-up with minor compression pixelization artifacts, especially in darker scenes, but there are no distracting artifacts. Overall, the picture will surely please due to a generally natural presence throughout.

LaserDisc Soundtrack:
The Dolby® Digital 5.1 discrete and matrix PCM soundtracks are terrific sounding, especially the wonderfully haunting music score by Bernard Herrmann. Dialogue sounds natural throughout with good spatial integration. Sound effects are nicely rendered with soundstage directionality and split surround engagement. Bass response is at times deep and powerful, yet always natural sounding, and is effectively enhanced with .1 LFE. The discrete is at times holosonic sounding with excellent ambient delineation. During a rainstorm sequence, the discrete displays soundfield delineation that the matrix version fails to equal.
(Surround Bass Below 50Hz): Yes
(Aggressive System Surround): Yes
(Intense 25Hz Bass): No
(Deep Bass Challenging): Yes
(Aggressive 0.1 LFE):
(Holosonic Soundfield): Yes
(Aggressive Split Surround): Yes
(Center Back Surround Imaging): Yes
(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: