If you occasionally watch Nickelodeon, ’Hey Arnold!’ is certainly a familiar name to you, as it is the story of an orphan living with his grandparents in the Big City. With a great cast of characters, ’Hey Arnold!’ always manages to intrigue me as the stories are very tangible and varied within their run-down suburban settings.
Now Arnold has made his big screen debut and the movie is now available on DVD as well. The film tells the story how Arnold and Gerald save their neighborhood from being torn down by an industrial magnate. The film is somewhat more expansive than the TV shows but maintains the same style and flair throughout.
Paramount is offering up ’Hey Arnold!’ with an anamorphic widescreen transfer and a fullscreen version on the same disc. The transfer is absolutely clean and without any flaws. There is no grain, no speckles and colors are perfectly delineated with vibrant hues and shades. Edges are sharp but without edge-enhancement. The entire film is free of compression artifacts making it a real pleasure to watch on this DVD.
The audio presentation is also very good, although admittedly, the surround usage is a bit sparse and most of the film is very front-loaded. The film features a cool score that underscores the event, but sadly the original ’Hey Arnold!’ title theme is not part of the movie. Dialogues are very well integrated and the voices have been provided by a superb cast. Apart fomr the usual suspects lending their voices to the principal characters, Christopher Lloyd, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Paul Sorvino bring some of the most memorable new characters of the film to life with great success.
The DVD also contains the movie’s trailer and a game for the upcoming ’Charlotte’s Web 2’ direct-to-video sequel. Speaking of which… Paramount has installed a non-skippable commercial for ’Charlotte’s Web’ and its sequel on this DVD much to my chagrin. Nickelodeon is bad enough in trying to sell kids on all sorts crap with their flood of commercials, but a DVD is just no place to forcefully attempt to sell more items to children. Since the shrieking quality of the voice advertising the products is incredibly annoying on top of it, this un-feature truly hurts the release.
Overall, ’Hey Arnold! The Movie’ is a fun release that gives you the chance to rewatch this story over and over again with your children.