A tour bus goes hundreds of kilometres off-course in the African desert. Then it breaks downby an abandoned town. While waiting for rescue (which may or may not ever come), thepassengers work on mounting a production of King Lear, and their civilized veneer getsprogressively stripped away. The concept is odd, but it works, and the cast (including JenniferJason Leigh) is uniformly strong.
The sound is only 2.0, but it must be borne in mind that…this is a Dogme film. These are low-budget productions, frequently shot on video (as was this), and there are strict rules as to howsound can be used. Music tracks, for instance, are forbidden. For all this, the disc sounds great,with some very nice wind effects using the surround to boost the sense of isolation. There isn’tmuch surround action, though, as this is a movie about dialogue.
A great looking film, frequently looking much more expensive than it is. The blacks aredeep, the flesh tones are accurate, and the contrasts and colours are very strong and bright (all ofthis within the limits of the shooting equipment). There is some edge enhancement visible. Theformat is fullscreen, as is mandated by the Dogme rules.
Nothing much: the menu is basic, and there’s a trailer.
Dark and fascinating, The King is Alive may push the rules of Dogme 95 somewhat (does acamera still count as handheld if you hold it in an airplane?), but makes for compellingviewing.
Special Features List