Short Circuit 2

Short Circuit 2 (1988)
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Cast: Fisher Stevens, Michael McKean, Cynthia Gibb
Extras: Featurette, Trailers

After his antics in the original film, the lovable robot Number five – Johnny Five that is – is back for more in the sequel ’Short Circuit 2.’ This time, Johnny is taking to the big city. Trying to blend in with society, Johnny five quickly turns everything and everyone around himself upside down and goes on a hilarious rampage that ultimately helps make the city a little bit safer… or unsafer, depending on your point of view.

The DVD features an anamorphic widescreen presentation in its theatrical 1.85:1 aspect ratio on this DVD, as well as a fullscreen transfer on the disc’s flip side that is slightly cropped on the sides. The transfer is very clean and immediately reveals a good level of detail. Some slight grain is evident in occasional shots, but for the most part, the images is very stable and free of any blemishes or other distractions. Colors are strong and well delineated, creating a very pleasing and natural-looking image throughout. The transfer sadly exhibits noticeable edge-enhancement, resulting in ringing artifacts and an unnatural crispness of the image which can be distracting at times. The compression, although generally good, nonetheless exhibits slight pixelation artifacts that can also become quite noticeable at times.

The disc contains Dolby Surround audio tracks in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese, as well as a variety of subtitles. The tracks are well produced and create a lively sound field with adequate surround usage. Dialogues are well-integrated and are never drowned out by the music of the sound effects, remaining distinguishable at all times. The presentation is dynamic with a good frequency response, creating a sonic image that sounds natural and has a good – albeit unexaggerated – bass extension and clear high ends.

’Short Circuit 2’ also contains a 3-minute promo featurette with cast interviews that gives you a little insight into the motivations behind the movie, as well as a number of trailers – although not for this movie.

Not quite as good as the original, ’Short Circuit 2’ still has its strengths. It is a worthy sequel that tries to take the premise one step further. Sadly the lack of Steve Guttenberg in the cast is evident, though. Johnny Five is nicely coming back to life in this film, making his antics more daring and adventurous than in the first film.