1993 isn’t that long ago, but watching this film makes that year seem much further back than it is, given the subsequent career paths of some of the cast.
Johnny Depp is Gilbert, our hero and narrator. He lives in the US heartland small town of Endora, with a family that includes his mentally impaired brother Leonardo DiCaprio (in a performance that reminds us that yes, he really is a good actor) and his enormous mother (Darlene Cates), who has not been out of the house …n seven years. One might be tempted to see the family as eccentric (bordering on the grotesque), but Depp’s low key narration, in tune with the overall tone of the film, keeps them from being risible. Into Gilbert’s life steps Juliette Lewis to shake things up.
Low key film, low key audio. This isn’t necessarily a criticism. Earthshaking effects would be out of place here. Even so, there is full surround, with good representation of sound effects (not just music) coming from the rear speakers. The surround effect doesn’t force itself on you, but you are aware of its presence. The dialogue is crystal clear.
The video follows the same pattern as the sound: precise but not ostentatious. There are no transfer problems – no grain, no image enhancement flaws, no pixellation. The colours are not terrifically vibrant, but I’m not sure that they’re supposed to be. The picture is presented in the original 1.85:1 widescreen format. A good, clean job overall.
Extras? A trailer, nothing more. The menu is just as basic: no motion, no sound.
The package may be very basic, but fans of the film will no doubt rejoice that it is finally on the market.
Special Features List
- Theatrical Trailer