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  Directed by
    None Listed
  Starring
  Specs
  • Widescreen 1.85:1
  Languages
  • English: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • French: Dolby Digital Surround
  • Spanish: Dolby Digital Surround
  • German: Dolby Digital Surround
  • Italian: Dolby Digital Surround
  Subtitles
    English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Dutch
  Extras
  • Theatrical trailer

Baby's Day Out

20th Century Fox/20th Century Fox . R4 . COLOR . 95 mins . G . PAL

  Feature
Contract

When you are a kid, things like this and Home Alone are funny. But, once you get older, they are long, tedious and just inanely stupid, so much so that it's painful to watch.

This shocker of a film is produced by John Hughes, the man behind Home Alone, Dennis The Menace and Curly Sue - all starring kids. Oh my god, make the bad man stop! Well stop kids films anyway... He did make National Lampoon’s Vacation, Pretty In Pink and The Breakfast Club! This is directed by Patrick Read Johnson who later went on to make... well nothing really. He has done this and that in the film industry, a bit of producing and a splash of acting – but just hasn’t found a groove. This definitely ain’t it.

A familiar face throughout the film is John Pantoliano – Cypher from The Matrix as well as Lara Flynn Boyle – Serleena from the up-and-coming Men In Black II and of course Joe Mantegna from The Simpsons (he is Fat Tony). But this great cast just has appallingly predictable material to work with. This is one of those kids films that holds little interest for adults – it's all basic comic humour that we have all seen before – and one that's definitely for the kids only.

The story is based around three crooks, Eddie, Norby and Veeko (Joe Mantegna, John Pantoliano and Brian Haley) who pose as baby photographers and plan to kidnap baby Bink, the son of the ever-so-rich Cotwells. They do kidnap the baby, and get away, but this baby has a plan of its own. After the Cotwells find ransom notes for $5 million, they call the police, who begin to search for baby Bink. But this baby is too much for these three crooks who just chase the mischievous tike all over New York City. The stunts are fairly stock standard – someone “straddles” a girder, someone else gets hit in the face... you know how it pans out.

  Video
Contract

The video is presented in a widescreen aspect of 1.85:1, and is 16x9 enhanced.

The colours are bold and rich for the entire feature, but suffer from an orange wash. This isn’t terribly annoying, yet skin tones appear a bit too peachy, and some colours are overly saturated. Blacks are limited in the film, but are solid when they appear, and shadow detail is reasonable. Again, there isn’t a terribly large number of dark, spooky scenes in the film.

Throughout the movie, many film artefacts can be seen and at times they are quite annoying. The opening sequence is heavily dressed with artefacts, including severe scratches, and the whole film suffers from a wash of grain.

Being a single layered disc, there is no layer change. We are treated with numerous subtitle languages, including English, French, Spanish, German, Italian and Dutch. The English subtitles are word-for-word perfect to the film dialogue, and are clear and easy to read in a black-outlined white font.

The picture is generally fairly soft, and at times lacks clarity. The quality of the picture varies throughout, yet this isn’t distracting, just apparent. Aliasing can be seen throughout on the usual culprits such as a building at 2:15 and 24:40.

  Audio
Contract

We are treated to a swag load of film languages with a Dolby Digital 5.1 English track and French, German, Italian and Spanish 2.0 Surround-encoded tracks. Naturally, the English is the prime listening option when it's your native language.

The subwoofer gets a real work out, with people’s gonads being hit again, and again, and again, as well as the best example of the 20th Century Fox logo seen for a long time. The score is supported richly by the subwoofer and adds a pleasing clarity to the sound.

The surround channels sound slightly tinny, which does detract slightly from the effect produced. However, they do provide a superb enveloping effect.

Dialogue is crisp and clear throughout the film, and the front left and right offer some great directional effects. The score by Bruce Broughton is suited to the style of the film, and adds a comic tone to the action on screen.

  Extras
Contract

The features supplied on this disc are limited to a static and silent menu, with simple menus to navigate around in, and a theatrical trailer. The trailer is presented in the widescreen aspect of 2.35:1 and is 16x9 enhanced and runs for 1:11. It doesn’t actually feature film footage, but acts as a teaser to draw audiences in.

  Overall  
Contract

Nothing more can be said about the movie without getting a tad rude, so we’ll leave it at that. The video transfer is fairly nice, with some slight problems, and the 5.1 soundtrack is great. The features are lacking anything extra, but what can you do? Rent it for when the baby sitter comes over for two reasons – 1) the kids will be amused for 90 minutes and most importantly 2) you don’t have to be there to watch it.


  • LINK: http://www.dvd.net.au/review.cgi?review_id=1633
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      And I quote...
    "Oh my god, make the bad man stop!"
    - Martin Friedel
      Review Equipment
    • DVD Player:
          Nowa DS-8318
    • TV:
          TEAC 68cm CTV
    • Speakers:
          Teac PLS-60 Home Theatre System
    • Centre Speaker:
          Teac PLS-60 Home Theatre System
    • Surrounds:
          Teac PLS-60 Home Theatre System
    • Audio Cables:
          Standard RCA
    • Video Cables:
          standard s-video
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