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  • Widescreen 2.35:1
  • 16:9 Enhanced
  • English: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • French: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Italian: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
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    Demolition Man

    Warner Bros./Warner Bros. . R4 . COLOR . 110 mins . M15+ . PAL


    Stallone went all futuristic on us in 1993, when he made the action-comedy-sci fi-retard flick Demolition Man. Starting out in 1996, Stallone is cop John Spartan, better known as Demolition Man for his habit of demolishing things in his quest for a better cup of noodle soup. Heís on the trail of notorious criminal/killer/hairdresser, Simon Phoenix (Wesley Snipes). They tangle, things blows up real good, a busload of people die and they both get snap frozen like peas for their crimes to acting. Fast forward 36 years into a peaceful, sanitary and PC future, Phoenix escapes and wreaks havoc with the help of unscrupulous people (itís never the scrupulous who do these things) so Spartan is defrosted to deal with his unique brand of violence and comedy.

    "Hurting people is not a good thing... sometimes it is, but not when itís a bunch of people looking for something to eat."

    Anyway, who cares what this is about? You in the back - SIT DOWN! Címon, seriously, you just have to know that stuff goes BOOM!, they have witty zingers before beating the shit out of someone, thereís a lot of mindless violence and swearing, they eat ratburgers and thereís a happy ending.

    In fact, looking beyond the stupidity of it all, thereís actually a pretty good film in here to enjoy. Some of the dialogue is quite funny, with the mix of old world and new clashing to politically incorrect result (which is the whole obvious point). The sets are good and for the most part quite believable rather than being completely far fetched, with many ideas not so far removed from what we have now.

    Stallone is often accused of being crap, his films crap, his acting crap, everything about him crap, but he doesnít always deserve this abuse - only sometimes. Demolition Man might seem like crap, but itís not. Heís made far worse than this when heís tried to take himself more seriously. Here he strikes the right blend of comedy, violent action and concept. Helping things along is Snipes who seems to positively relish his role as baddie Phoenix. With his real fighting skills, couldnít give a shit attitude and peroxide hair he looks and acts the part, and also gives an indication of his latest (and best) role as Blade.

    Commit me if you will, but I believe that this film deserves a fair run before you make an opinion based purely upon the fact that itís another Stallone vehicle. But as youíll soon read, the picture quality doesnít put up such a convincing argument in its favour.


    From the opening Warner Brothers logo, you know that something is amiss. The single biggest problem is that the compression is poorly done, resulting in low quality detail, aliasing, shimmering, macro blocking, compression artefacts, ringing around objects and problems dealing with dark settings. On the plus side, the colours are okay, but it is a little dark at times. If this was a cost-cutting decision, it was a bad call.


    Count yourself lucky that it doesnít sound as bad as it looks. On the whole, the Dolby Digital 5.1 mix makes fairly effective use of all channels, filling the room with little environmental effects throughout the film and drawing in the surrounds to add some pizzazz on top of the norm as required. Dialogue wise it comes through clearly, perhaps sounding a little forward which would enhance clarity. When layered, the various sounds remain distinct, so when action scenes get going it doesnít become an aural mess.


    This DVD is completely free of those pesky extras that clog up the menu systems and waste our valuable time.


    A better film than people might give it credit for, Stallone and Snipes have a good time, especially Snipes who really cuts loose with the bad guy role. Sandra Bollocks can get a little annoying with the whole cutesy partner thing, but she looks kinda sexy in her tight police uniform, so the overall result is engaging and satisfying.

    It is a shame, however, that the DVD is so poorly thrown together, devoid of extras and with a picture in dire need of an overhaul to bring it up to scratch.

  • LINK: http://www.dvd.net.au/review.cgi?review_id=2108
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      And I quote...
    "A surprisingly good Stallone film lumbered with a pile of junk for a picture. It's a shame, but then that's what we get for being sheep..."
    - Vince Carrozza
      Review Equipment
    • DVD Player:
          Sony DVP-525
    • TV:
          Sony 68cm
    • Receiver:
          Sony STR-DB1070
    • Speakers:
          Wharfedale s500
    • Centre Speaker:
          Polk Audio CS245
    • Surrounds:
          Wharfedale WH-2
    • Subwoofer:
          DB Dynamics TITAN
    • Audio Cables:
          Standard Optical
    • Video Cables:
          standard s-video
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