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Site created 12/15/97.

review added: 5/3/02

The Others
Dimension Collector's Series - 2001 (2002) - Dimension (Buena Vista)

review by Todd Doogan of The Digital Bits

Enhanced for 16x9 TVs

The Others: Dimension Collector's Series Film Rating: A-

Disc Ratings (Video/Audio/Extras): A/A/B+

Specs and Features

Disc One: The Film
104 mins, PG-13, letterboxed widescreen (1.85:1), 16x9 enhanced, Double Amaray keep case packaging, single-sided, RSDL dual-layered (layer switch at 58:50 in chapter 11), sneak peaks: The Others soundtrack promo, Dimension Cutting-Edge Films video promo, Miramax Movies to Remember video promo, theatrical trailers (for Serendipity, Texas Rangers, Imposter, Kate & Leopold and Zu Warriors), animated film-themed menu screens with sound, scene access (19 chapters), languages: English and French (DD 5.1), subtitles: English and Spanish, Closed Captioned

Disc Two: Supplemental Material
A Look Inside The Others production featurette, The Others visual effects gallery, Xeroderma Pigmentosum: What is it? The Story of a Family Dealing with the Disease featurette, An Intimate Look at Director Alejandro Amenábar behind-the-scenes featurette with interviews, stills gallery, theatrical trailer, animated menu screens with sound, languages: English (DD 2.0), subtitles: none

Why do I always get the discs featuring films I can't talk about? Why? I guess it just doesn't matter, because here's another one. Nicole Kidman stars in the film she should have been nominated for instead of Moulin Rouge. If anyone tells you Kidman is an ice queen without any range, point them to this film because she's incredible in it. The Others is about a mother and her two children trapped inside a home because the children suffer from a rare skin condition that leaves them photosensitive to any light brighter than candle light. When a group of homecare workers come into their lives they start to realize that their home is haunted by ghosts and the ghosts want them out of the house. Like, now. But why? That's the secret layered underneath this film. Written, directed and featuring music composed by Spanish filmmaker Alejandro Amenábar, creator of Open Your Eyes (the basis for Vanilla Sky), The Others is a ghost story that is both creepy, atmospheric and ghastly in parts. And the revelation at the end is cool enough and not even as obvious and one would expect. This is definitely a flick worth checking out.

Dimension has released The Others as a two-disc special edition, and it's a nice effort. The picture and sound quality are both top notch. The anamorphic widescreen video is very well represented with stark blacks, nice detail and bright colors when they are on screen. The Dolby Digital 5.1 (in English and French) is also nice with clear whispers, hard surrounds and a nice atmospheric vibe that help pull you into the film nicely. There's no commentary track, which I would have liked but the second disc is full on some nice video extras. First up is an introspective look behind the scenes with the short featurette: A Look Inside The Others. It's not fluffy like most featurettes these days, but it's not quite the behind-the-scenes I would have liked for the film. Next up is The Others visual effects gallery. Here we look at the digital plates used to create some nice understated CGI effects in the film. Here we see how they got the glass reflections, fog effects and perspective shots used in the film to make the film that much more creepy. And speaking of creepy, there's a short character piece illustrating life with the photosensitive disease used in the film. Xeroderma Pigmentosum: What is it? The Story of a Family Dealing with the Disease is a featurette that's pretty self-explanatory and is as watchable as the film. Lastly in the featurette arena is: An Intimate Look at Director Alejandro Amenábar, which is a behind the scenes look at the processes of a filmmaker a lot of us will be talking about more. Rounding out the disc are a stills gallery (which won't work on a Sony 7700, but seems to have no problems on other brands) and the film's theatrical trailer.

The Others is a pretty cool little film. To talk about it any more than that would ruin it, but I urge you to check it out. And if you like it, go out and find Open Your Eyes. Amenábar is a talent that not only jumps in your face, but thumps the inside of your skull. And that's just where I want my filmmakers to thump me.

Todd Doogan
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