WSR Detailed LaserDisc Review


Reviewed In Issue 22 Of Widescreen Review® Stars:
Frances McDormand, William H. Macy, Steve Buscemi.

WSR Review Scores
Picture Rating: 4.5
Sound Rating: 3.5
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Reference Systems
Critics' Composite Score:
Internet Links


DVD General Information
(Studio/Distributor): PolyGram Video
(Catalog Number): 800 638 693-1
(MPAA Rating): R
(Retail Price): $34.95
(Running Time In Minutes): 98
(Color Type): Color
(Chaptered/Scene Access): Yes
(Closed Captioned): Yes
(Theatrical Release): 1996
(LD Release Date): 10/9/96
(THX® Digitally Mastered):

Credits Information
(Director): Joel Coen
(Screenplay/Written By): Joel Coen & Ethan Coen
(Story): NA
(Music): Carter Burwell
(Director Of Photography):
(Production Designer): Rick Heinrichs
(Visual Effects): The Effects House
(Costume Designer): Mary Zophres
(Editor): Roderick Jaynes
(Supervising Sound Editors): Skip Lievsay
(Re-Recording Mixers):
(Executive Producers): Tim Bevan & Eric Fellner
(Co-Producers): NA
(Producers): Ethan Coen

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 Surround
(Theatrical Sound): Dolby Stereo SR
(Theatrical Re-Issue Soundtrack):
(Remastered Dolby Digital):
(Remastered DTS Digital Surround):
(Additional Languages):

WSR Narrative Review
Story Synopsis:
Jerry Lundegaard (Macy) is a Minneapolis car salesman who has gotten himself into debt and is so desperate for money that he hires two thugs (Buscemi and Stormare) to kidnap his own wife. His plan is to collect the ransom from his wealthy father-in-law to pay the thugs and keep the rest to satisfy his debts. The scheme collapses when the kidnappers murder three innocent victims in rural Minnesota, drawing the local Police Chief, Marge Gunderson (McDormand), into her first homicide investigation.

LaserDisc Picture:
The matted 1.85:1 picture exhibits natural color fidelity, accurate fleshtones and deep solid blacks. The picture is sharp and detailed, with excellent shadow detail. There is no noise but the slightest artifacts are apparent.

LaserDisc Soundtrack:
The soundtrack is conventional with a nicely recorded music score that provides subtle surround envelopment. Occasional sound effects create limited dimension and surround ambiance. The dialogue is mostly ADR-produced but is always intelligible.
(Surround Bass Below 50Hz):
(Aggressive System Surround):
(Intense 25Hz Bass):
(Deep Bass Challenging):
(Aggressive 0.1 LFE):
(Holosonic Soundfield):
(Aggressive Split Surround):
(Center Back Surround Imaging):
(Directionalized Dialogue):
Superb Sound Effects Recording Quality:
Superb Music Score Recording Quality:
Superb Special Visual Effects Quality:
Superb Color Fidelity:
Superb Cinematography:
Reference LaserDisc:
Collector Edition: