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  Directed by
    None Listed
  Starring
  Specs
  • Widescreen 2.35:1
  • 16:9 Enhanced
  • Dual Layer (RSDL 62:28)
  Languages
  • English: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • English: Dolby Digital Surround
  Subtitles
    English
  Extras
  • Deleted scenes - Hey You
  • Theatrical trailer
  • Audio commentary - Roger Waters and Gerald Scarfe
  • Photo gallery
  • Animated menus - Designed by Storm Thorgerson
  • Music video - Another Brick in the Wall Pt 2
  • Booklet
  • Digitally remastered
  • Awards/Nominations
  • 1 Documentaries

Pink Floyd - The Wall

Sony BMG/Sony BMG . R4 . COLOR . 95 mins . M15+ . PAL

  Feature
Contract

I'll warn you, I think Pink Floyd are great. Well, were great; I try to pretend they died in 1983 and were replaced by evil cyborgs who went on to make soulless corporate tripe rather than challenging, emotive and creative works like Wish You Were Here and The Wall.

The Wall is Roger Waters' baby, a mostly autobiographical concept album, stage show and film about a burnt out popstar who begins going mad. Haunted by the death of his father in World War II and the departure of his wife, he begins fantasising himself as a fascist dictator who is eventually tried and convicted by a giant arse!

Sounds strange? Well, sure, but that's 70s excess for you, and it's spiced up by some astounding animation by political satirist Gerald Scarfe, and of course, the amazing music of Pink Floyd at the height of their creative powers.

  Video
Contract

The video has been digitally remastered and the results are very satisfying. Good, deep blacks, moody and purposeful colour, exceptional sharpness and detail and no obvious MPEG artifacting despite a fairly typical average bitrate. The animation in particular looks gorgeous on DVD.

The only marks against the picture are a few minor film artifacts (which you'd expect) and a bit of troublesome aliasing during some scenes, which are a result of the crisp transfer. Softening the picture would have reduced the problem, but who wants that, really?

  Audio
Contract

The most obviously impressive aspect to this disc strikes you as soon as the animated menus appear - there's some serious surround action happening, and throughout the film, the surround channels are used very aggressively. We like, oh yes.

The next thing that hits you is the almost excessive amounts of bass that have been mixed into the music. The Wall is the first disc that I've watched in my new room where I've noticed the windows vibrating! Also, the dynamics of the soundtrack are impressive - you'll definitely need Dolby Digital to feel the full impact of 5 speakers roaring at you at once!

So, great music, great use of the surrounds and the LFE channel, what's with the average mark? Well, there's some quite distracting hiss during some sections that I tried to mask with cinema equalisation; it did a fair job, but I always heard the hiss there. It's not something we need to put up with with modern digital sound processing technology.

  Extras
Contract

Yikes, what a bunch of extras!

  • Animated menus - designed by Storm Thorgerson, who designed many of Floyd's album covers. They look and sound wonderful, but can't be interrupted. Apparently there are secret buttons, but I couldn't find them. Because they were secret, obviously.
  • Documentary - 'The Other Side of the Wall', a 25 minute doco dating from the release of the film. Picture and sound quality aren't great, but it's got some interesting stuff in it, as opposed to most of the marketing guff we get with modern films.
  • Documentary - 'Retrospective', a 45 minute doco with the principal crew reflecting on the film. Bob Geldof is conspicuously absent.
  • Theatrical Trailer - in Dolby Stereo, and of reasonable quality, considering.
  • Audio Commentary - from Roger Waters and Gerald Scarfe. Waters is obviously enjoying himself, making quite a few jokes, and Scarfe plays the quizzical onlooker.
  • Deleted Scene - the track 'Hey You' was never on the film, and I was always curious about it, but it shows up here as a black and white workprint - Waters had it cut due to length considerations.
  • Gallery and Production Stills - concept art from Scarfe and some behind the scenes stills.
  • Music Video - the Scarfe-directed Another Brick in the Wall Pt. 2. As a director he's a hell of an artist.
  • Technical Sound System Setup - in case your amp doesn't do this for you, the disc has a pink noise test (Pink noise? Geddit?? Oh, nevermind..) to calibrate your speakers. A sound meter is highly recommended for this.

Missing, however, is any commentary from Alan Parker. Disappointing, considering one exists. Also missing is any contribution from the other band members or album producer Bob Ezrin, due to bad blood between them and Waters. A real shame, and the reason this disc didn't get top marks for extras.

  Overall  
Contract

If you're a Floyd fan, you'll want this disc for sure. Sony have done a great job with the transfer, and though I would have liked them to have included the Alan Parker commentary recorded for the laserdisc SE a couple of years ago, the Waters/Scarfe commentary is possibly more relevant and interesting.

Good buy, blue sky!


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      And I quote...
    ""
    - Paul Dossett
      Review Equipment
    • DVD Rom:
          Pioneer 103(s)
    • MPEG Card:
          RealMagic Hollywood Plus
    • TV:
          Mitsubishi Diva 33
    • Amplifier:
          Yamaha DSP-A1
    • Speakers:
          Richter Excalibur
    • Centre Speaker:
          Richter Unicorn
    • Surrounds:
          Richter Hydras
    • Audio Cables:
          Monster RCA
    • Video Cables:
          Monster s-video
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