Pin It
Favorite

DVD Review 

by Marty Demarest


Most movie studios reserve the multi-disc, collector's edition, hand-signed-in-a-special-carrying-case DVD treatment for science-fiction/fantasy extravaganzas and cult favorites. The extra time and room available on the DVD format make a perfect place for deleted scenes, behind-the-scenes documentaries and long-winded, self-congratulatory commentaries. In other words, movie studios usually put enough stuff on a DVD to make paying the inflated prices worthwhile.


But Warner Brothers has gone overboard with the three-disc set for Clint Eastwood's Mystic River. I understand that as an Oscar-nominated film directed by Clint Eastwood, it's something of a prestige project. All of the actors, from Tim Robbins to Sean Penn, are heavy hitters who were clearly devoted to the project. The screenplay by Brian Helgeland is a perfect example of how to turn a good book into a successful movie. But three discs?


Based on Dennis Lehane's novel, Mystic River tells the story of three Southies -- boys from Boston's working-class South Side -- named Jimmy, Sean and Dave. Though close to each other as children, the abduction and sexual abuse of Dave leads to the end of their friendship -- and to the beginnings of difficult adulthoods. Much of the movie catches up with the boys later in life, when the paths of all three cross again. This time, it's Jimmy (Penn) who suffers a personal trauma. Sean (Kevin Bacon), who has grown up to be a homicide detective, comes back into his life as a result. Dave, who has grown up haunted and unsettled, creeps back into the picture as his wife (Marcia Gay Harden) becomes suspicious of his recent behavior.


In an ensemble-cast, intricate drama such as Mystic River, more complications are bound to emerge. Story threads appear from the details that Eastwood includes in each scene, and all of the actors inhabit their characters with serious, heady understanding. (Penn's family-man/reformed gangster is particularly well-done.) But even as the plot and emotional core of Mystic River grows, there's not much to it outside of the movie.


Nevertheless, Warner Brothers has filled the other two DVDs with unnecessary extras. One of the discs -- an entire one -- is the movie's soundtrack. The other contains increasingly fatuous interviews with the director and cast from the Charlie Rose Show. Mystic River is a brilliant movie, but at $40 for three discs, you might want to consider the standard version instead for your home DVD library.





Publication date: 06/10/04

  • Pin It

Latest in News

  • Odds And Ends
  • Odds And Ends

    Idaho lawmakers are pulled in lots of directions; plus, SPD weighs a "culture audit"
    • Mar 25, 2015
  • Four Days A Week
  • Four Days A Week

    Idaho schools that dropped one day a week from their schedule are saving a little money — but at what cost?
    • Mar 25, 2015
  • A County Ombudsman?
  • A County Ombudsman?

    Weighing the costs and benefits of oversight at the Spokane County Sheriff's Office
    • Mar 25, 2015
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Thu | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue
OR7 — The Journey

OR7 — The Journey @ Bing Crosby Theater

April 3-4

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by Marty Demarest

  • The Cowboy's Cowboy
  • The Cowboy's Cowboy

    A Canadian sings about the life —  not just the lifestyle — of the new West
    • May 15, 2013
  • Completing the Trilogy
  • Completing the Trilogy

    Mass Effect has finally arrived
    • May 23, 2012
  • Minecraft
  • Minecraft

    Adventure and survival too often give way to mindless crafts in this building-block simulator.
    • Feb 8, 2012
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Why Idaho kids don't go to college

    And what that means for the Gem State
    • Mar 4, 2015
  • New Blood

    Candidates are launching bids for Spokane City Council and could bring big changes to city government
    • Mar 18, 2015
  • More »

Top Tags in
News & Comment

Briefs


Comment


Publisher's Note


marijuana


long reads


© 2015 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation