In Short: Matt Broderick's classic teen comedy comes to DVD with not only an anamorphic transfer, but a commentary from John Hughes himself.
Matthew Broderick stars in one of his most famous roles as Ferris Buller, and he's the anti-hero of John Hughes's famed 1986 teen comedy. Broderick is Ferris Buller, a senior in high school who uses his smarts to not only plan a day off in the city of Chicago, but to consistently outwit his evil principal, Mr. Ed Rooney(Jeffrey Jones).
The first half of the film is dedicated to having everything fall into place so that Ferris and his friend Cameron(Alan Ruck) and girlfriend Sloane(Mia Sara). Once the three are off, they spend a day touring Chicago's loop, considering where life has taken them and where they have yet to go, and still have to make it home in time so that Ferris can continue faking sick.
There are more than a few classic moments and a couple of scenes where the audience isn't quite sure if Ferris will get away with it all. John Hughes has done great work with this classic comedy and Broderick's performance is great as well.
VIDEO: "Ferris Buller's Day Off" is presented here in it's original 2.35:1 aspect ratio and it looks very good, although not quite perfect. Images are clear, clean and adequately sharp. Colors are accurate and natural although not terribly vibrant. Detail is consistently good throughout the movie, and flesh tones are natural as well.
Where the image runs into a few problems are the occasional (yet noticable) instances of shimmering as well as a few small scratches on the print that is used. Otherwise, this is a clean image that is very likely the best that this film has ever looked on home video.
SOUND: "Ferris Buller's Day Off" contains not much at all in the way of action or effects, but it does certainly sound very nice on this DVD, with a score that has a nice presence and dialogue that is consistently clear and easily heard. Again, nothing spectacular, but certainly pleasing.
MENUS: Very basic menu art from Paramount, with zero animation.
Commentary: Director John Hughes provides the commentary for "Ferris Buller's Day Off". Although I was looking forward to this commentary highly, it has its strong points and it also does contain a few slow spots. What I really like about this commentary (and commentaries in general like this) is how honest it feels. Hughes occasionally comments on pieces of the film that he feels don't work quite as well, or not at all.
Hughes mainly focuses on the relationships between the characters and how they play out along the lines of the movie( their motivations, how they played their characters, etc) as well as how Broderick gradually sculpted the role along the way. He has quite a few interesting insights about how these characters were built to be accurate to high school kids and be around real kids(the actors were placed among many extras their own age during the film). Hughes also provides some interesting facts about the Cameron character, from where he came from to just what might be going on in Cameron's mind.
He also points out quite a bit of information about various aspects of the production, from where locations are to where they were located in the shooting schedule to more details about the background of the set. This is mainly an actor's commentary, though, where most of the speaking is talking about working with the actors and dialogue rather than anything too terribly technical, although Hughes does point out some filmmaking concepts at a few times throughout the picture.
Again, there are a few slow moments on this commentary, but in general, fans of the picture will definitely enjoy hearing Hughes talk about this film on DVD.
Trailer: Strangely, there's no trailer on this disc.
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