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  • Widescreen 1.85:1
  • 16:9 Enhanced
  • English: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • None
  • 4 Teaser trailer - Australian Rules, Last Kiss, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Visitors (Sneak Peak)
  • Theatrical trailer
  • Photo gallery - 11 Stills
  • Animated menus
  • Filmographies

Don's Plum (Rental)

20th Century Fox/20th Century Fox . R4 . COLOR . 91 mins . MA15+ . PAL


Don’s Plum - what’s this about, fruit picking? Pie making? A diner where these guys hang out, oh yeah that’s right!

This low budget cult film was banned in America for some strange reason, which is quite surprising given some of the commercial crap that they produce nowadays. It has been rated MA in Australia for coarse language, of which there is plenty, and drug use, again of which there are plenty of references. Made entirely out of improvisation, this film would have been a real workout for these actors, including mainstream stars such as Tobey Maguire and Leonardo DiCaprio.

So, what’s it about? Bloody good question – but to be honest, its not really about anything in particular. It focuses on a group of four male friends, who meet at Don’s Plum each Saturday night with their “bring a girl” girl for the week. They don’t particularly like each other, but they don’t have anything better to do, so they go and just chill. This week, Brad (Bloom) has been with Sara (Lewis) already that night, so he has his girl. Jeremy (Connolly) brings along Amy (Benson), a hitchhiker he picks up. Ian (Maguire) has no luck with rejection after rejection, but eventually finds Juliet (Sisto) to bring along. Derek (DiCaprio) hasn’t had any luck “finding the love” and brings himself. There they also find Constance (McComb), a friend of Sara’s. So here we set the scene. Don’s Plum, a diner in L.A. on a Saturday night, with our mentally loose waitress Flo and an array of colourful characters just ready to spark up the night. So what do they talk about? Well everything really. Male and female masturbation, drugs they have done, drugs they haven’t done, drugs they shouldn’t have done, sex, fathers, suicide, relationships, couples, Flo, Don, each other, drugs (again), work, porn stars, more drugs and more sex. Right, that’s it now. The cast work incredibly well together, and within each and every character there is a trait that we can all relate to. The major question, however - is this really a sensible look into society’s 20-something generation, or just a load of absolute crap? Well you be the judge of that one, but seriously there is a little bit of everyone of us somewhere within these characters.


The video is presented in an anamorphically enhanced widescreen aspect of 1.85:1.

Now normally this is where we talk about colours. OK, so lets talk about black, white and about a million shades of grey. This film was shot in black and white using film stock as opposed to digital recording. The blacks are solid and black, and the whites are bright and bleeding – two extremes on the scale. The shades in between are mastered with a fine precision and look great on screen. Shadow detail is reasonable but not good, which is also due to the production method, as shadows can at times become murky.

Grain is the biggest thing to point out with this transfer. There's grain and lots of it. Kinda like the contents of one of those silos. After the first five minutes, you forget you’re watching a black and white feature, and the grain adds to the atmosphere that this technique creates. There are the odd one or two film artefacts, but on the whole these are not a problem. The quality of the film stock is so high, it is great to see film handled so well. There are no hints of any compression artefacts whatsoever.


We are given one audio track, and that is Dolby Digital 2.0, which is not surround encoded. This track is suitable and sufficient for a film of this genre, as it is purely a dialogue-driven movie and no surrounds and subwoofer could ever enhance serious dialogue.

Speech is crisp and clear throughout, yet at times can become distorted. There are no audio synch problems whatsoever, nor any corny foley effects. The music enlisted for the film (i.e. two songs) is suitable, fitting, subtle and appropriately used in the climax of one scene at the end, and leading into the closing credits.


This disc has been given a few extras for audiences to play with, but this is one film that needs a director’s commentary, or at least production notes.

We do have, though, 16x9 enhanced menus which are animated with audio. From the 'Extra Features' page, you have access to:

  • Theatrical Trailer
  • which runs for 1:27 with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio. This doesn’t really tell the story of the film, but then again, its the experience, not the story!
  • The Photo Gallery
  • hosts 11 stills from the film, again in black and white.
  • The Filmographies
  • of the cast feature one or two pages for the main cast members. It’s not easy to guess who gets two pages.
  • The Palace Films advertising spot features four theatrical trailers: Australian Rules which runs for 2:27 with Dolby Digital 2.0 surround-encoded audio, Last Kiss which runs for 1:31 with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio,Kiss Kiss (Bang Bang) which runs for 1:55 and features Dolby Digital 2.0 audio, and Visitors which runs for 1:45 and features Dolby Digital 2.0 audio. This last trailer is a sneak peak of a film that featured at Cannes in 2002.

Upon placing the disc in the player, you are shown the first three trailers of the Palace Films advertising spot, which can be skipped using the 'next' button on your remote.


This is one hell of a ride which takes you into the lives of these people. The funny thing is, everyone can see a little bit of themselves in at least one of these characters...

  • LINK: http://www.dvd.net.au/review.cgi?review_id=2162
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      And I quote...
    "Don’s Plum has a fruity filling with various seeds each encased within a tough skin, but all in all in the very end it’s just a mess."
    - Martin Friedel
      Review Equipment
    • DVD Player:
          Philips DVD 736K
    • TV:
          TEAC EU68-ST
    • 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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