Media

Home Theater Movie Renter's Guide - March, 2011

ARTICLE INDEX

"Rain Man" (Blu-ray) - Reviewed by Jim Milton

movie-march-2011-rain-man

Synopsis

Rain Man is the kind of touching drama that Oscars are made for--and, sure enough, the film took Academy honors for best picture, director, screenplay, and actor (Dustin Hoffman) in 1988. Hoffman plays Raymond, an autistic savant whose late father has left him $3 million in a trust. This gets the attention of his materialistic younger brother, a hot-shot LA car dealer named Charlie (Tom Cruise) who wasn't even aware of Raymond's existence until he read his estranged father's will. Charlie picks up Raymond and takes him on a cross-country journey that becomes a voyage of discovery for Charlie, and, perhaps, for Raymond, too. But what began as an unsentimental journey for the Babbitt brothers becomes much more than the distance between two places. It's a connection between two vastly different people and a poignant, profound and powerful film.

Specifications

  • MGM Studios
  • 2011, Color, Rated R, 2 Hr 6 min
  • Aspect Ratio:  1.33:1
  • Codec: VC-1
  • 1080p
  • English, 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
  • Starring: Dustin Hoffman, Tom Cruise
  • Directed by Berry Levinson
Rating
  • Entertainment:
  • Video:
  • Audio:
  • Extras:
  • Violence: Mild
  • Sex: No
  • Language: Bad

Commentary

An interesting story that is more about Cruises’ character development than Hoffman’s. The film avoids most of the usual clichés and sappy sentimentality. Hoffman really nailed Raymond’s role and his Oscar was well deserved for his portrayal of someone who does not communicate with the world in the same manner as most people. Charlie (Cruise) was well cast as well, as it seems easy for him to play the role of the rich brother who gets saddled with an autistic savant older brother. Raymond is better off at the end of the film, but Charlie has done the most “traveling” by the time the credits roll. Poignant and touching, yet not overly mushy, Rain Man is a must have for movie lovers. What ever happened to Judge Wapner?

Technical

The picture quality is better than the last release on DVD, though this film was not remastered for BD. Some softness and DNR scrubbing can be seen in places, but overall colors are natural and warm. Surround sound can be a bit artificial and echoes in the rears too much, but again, not to the point of distraction. Not much deep bass here, either.

Extras

The Journey of Rain Man – A Retrospective Documentary & Lifting The Fog: A Look At The Mysteries of Autism.