Two If By Sea

Two If By Sea (1996)
Warner Home Video
Cast: Sandra Bullock, Denis Leary, Stephen Dillane, Yaphet Kotto, Mike Starr
Extras: Trailer, Featurette, Soundtrack section, Biographies

Warner Home Video and Morgan Creek have prepared a DVD version of ’Two If By Sea’ a romantic comedy starring Sandra Bullock and Denis Leary. Frank and Roz are petty thieves who have managed to steal a priceless painting. Now they want to enjoy a laid-back weekend among the New England yacht-and-caviar set to sell the painting that would allow them to retire. The two also plan to breathe new life in their relationship, but suddenly things turn out differently than expected when thugs and the FBI are on their heels trying to recover the painting.

The DVD Warner Home Video is presenting here features a 16×9 enhanced widescreen presentation of the movie but for some reason the quality is not even remotely up to par with current releases. While the color reproduction is quite good in the transfer and the framing appears to be accurate, the compression is just plain bad. Riddled with compression artifacts of all sorts, the result is a flat image without detail and definition. The kinetic use of the camera in this film doesn’t make things better as the image blurs with almost every movement. In all honesty, this transfer looks as if it were a mistake that slipped through quality assurance rather than an anticipated release.

The disc features audio tracks in English and French in generally good quality. Both tracks presented in 5.1 Dolby Digital are making good use of the surrounds. The tracks sound natural with a good frequency response.

I am not sure what happened here. The disc comes as a dual layer DVD that should allow for plenty of storage space and yet, the video compression on the disc is one of the worst I have seen in recent times. The fact that only about 60% of the disc’s space is actually used, the only explanation I have for the poor quality of this release is that it was unintentional and happened by accident. Either way, I am afraid I have to recommend anyone to stay away from this disc.