Stepmom
Columbia / 1998 / 120 Mins / Rated M15+

This Review is sponsored by 
Columbia/Tri-Star Home Video


MOVIE
Here we go yet another Julia Roberts vehicle, albeit a slightly different one for her to say the least. Luke Harrison (Ed Harris) is divorced from his wife Jackie (Susan Sarandon) and is living with the new love of his life Isabel Kelly (Julia Roberts). 

Things do not go too easy for them with his children, especially with Anna (Jena Malone). Everything that Isabel does to win over the kids fails. We then learn that the children's mother has developed Cancer and now the kids and Isabel must learn to get along as Jackie will not be around for much longer.

I was expecting this movie to be somewhat more lighthearted but this did turn out to be quite dramatic and enjoyable and exceeded my expectations. Julia Roberts performance was great and a lot better than some of her other roles. As usual Susan Sarandon excels in a role like this. 

The only downside was Ed Harris' performance it seemed a little light on as if it was only a cameo more than a supporting role.

VIDEO
This is an average transfer from Columbia. It is extremely sharp and clear. The colors were slightly over saturated throughout the movie and was quite annoying. Shadow detail was spot on.

There were no MPEG artifacts, but there was a fair amount of grain in the original print which is surprising considering that the movie was only made in 1998.

Stepmom is framed at 2:35:1 and is 16:9 enhanced.

This is an RSDL disc. The layer change occurs at 71:41.

AUDIO

Quite a standard sound stage for a movie of this type. The movie was very much localized towards the front soundstage and the surrounds really only got a mention with background music. The .1 channel is not present. 

There 2 languages on this disc, an English Dolby Digital 5.0 and French Dolby Digital 5.0 soundtrack. I listened to the English soundtrack.

Dialog was easy to listen to throughout.

EXTRAS
An average set of extras on this disc.

Feature: Again, another short 5 minute featurette. Standard Columbia/Tri-Star fare.

Theatrical Trailer: An average trailer framed and 1:85:1 in Dolby Digital 5.1 sound.

The other extras contain the following:

Dolby Digital 5.1 City Trailer
Cast Notes

Subtitles:

English
French 
Arabic

FINAL THOUGHTS
Entertaining movie. Average transfer, average extras.

16:9 ENHANCEMENT DISC RATING

VIDEO:
AUDIO:
EXTRAS:

PLOT:
OVERALL:

REVIEW EQUIPMENT

Display: 48" Sony RPTV.
DVD Player:
Panasonic A350 Player using S-Video Cables.
Receiver:
Pioneer VSX-D508 Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround.
Speakers:
Accusound speaker system.

Copyright 2000 by [Roger Ward].
Revised: 25 May 2000 21:26:52 +1100 .

DVD INFORMATION
Region Coding: Region 4
No of Discs: 1
OFLC Rating M15+
Running Time: 120 Mins
Case Type: Keep Case
Release Date: 7/12/1999
Catalog Number: D26762
List Price: $34.95
Distributor: Columbia/Tri-Star
DISC SPECIFICATIONS
Disc Format: PAL
Disc Type: Label Only
Disc Format: SS-RSDL
Chapters: 28
Macrovision: Yes
Manufacturer: DVCC
VIDEO SPECIFICATIONS
Aspect Ratio: 2:35:1
Anamorphic: Yes
Film Format: 35mm
SOUND SPECIFICATIONS
Dolby Digital:

5.0 Surround

DTS: None
PCM Stereo: None
Other: None
Languages: English
French
Subtitles: Yes
SPECIAL FEATURES
Audio Commentary: None
Theatrical Trailer: Yes
Teaser Trailer: None
TV Spots: None
Dolby Trailer: City Trailer
Documentary: Yes
Cast & Crew Bios: Yes
Deleted Scenes: None
Music Videos: None
DVD Rom Content: None
Collectable Booklet: None
Scene Access: Yes
Animated Menus: None
Production Notes: Yes
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INTERNET MOVIE DATABASE INFO
OFFICIAL WEB SITE
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VIEW TRAILER
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