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  • Big Fat Liar

    Posted in: Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on September 10th, 2002

    Overall
    Film
    Video
    Audio
    Extras
    (out of 5)

    Synopsis

    Frankie Muniz is the liar of the title, and so is already in plenty of trouble. Then he meets someone even worse than the truth than he is: Paul Giamatti, playing a completely sleazy Hollywood producer, who steals Muniz’ creative writing paper and makes a movie from it. Muniz and best friend Amanda Bynes head off for Hollywood to exact revenge — some of which, I must confess, is pretty damn funny.

    Audio

    The music sounds terrific, as does the dialogue (no distortio… at all that I noticed). The sound effects, though, could use some work: in other words, I’d like to hear a few more of them coming from the rear speakers. They are there, but not enough to create a full environment.

    Video

    The colours look absolutely superb — warm when they should be, unnaturally bright at other times. Excellent stuff. The flesh tones are absolutely bang-on too. My one big complaint? The picture is cropped to 1.33:1 fullscreen. Grrrrrr!

    Special Features

    The features have the film’s target demographic in mind, as does the extremely elaborate menu (animated and scored virtually every step of the way, with full transitions as well, with Amanda Bynes commenting on your choices — or lack thereof — on one side of the screen). There are two commentaries. The one by director Shawn Levy and cinematographer Jonathan Brown is the more technical of the two, dealing with each scene and what the purpose of each technical decision was. Frankie Muniz’ commentary is rather more sparse and, with tales of behind-the-scenes hi-jinks and whatnot, more for the younger set. Also on offer: 14 minutes of deleted scenes (in a single, unsearchable montage); your standard behind-the-scenes featurette; a simple trivia challenge that unlocks a blooper Easter Egg; a Universal Studios Backlot game; a test to see how big a liar your are; Spyro game ads and codes (most of which are available on the DVD-ROM features); the trailer (which is in widescreen); production notes; and bios for the cast, the writers, and the director.

    Closing Thoughts

    The story may play out in ways you can expect, but some of the journey is quite funny. Lots of extras too, some of them more informative than others.

    Special Features List

    • Two Commentaries
    • Behind-the-Scenes Featurette
    • Deleted Scenes
    • Trivia Challenge
    • Interactive Universal Studios Backlot Game
    • “Are You A Big Fat Liar” Test
    • Theatrical Trailer
    • Production Notes
    • Biographies
    • DVD-ROM Features
    Posted In: 1.33:1 Fullscreen, Comedy, Disc Reviews, Dolby Digital 5.1 (English), Dolby Digital 5.1 (French), DVD, Universal

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