The Accidental Tourist

The Accidental Tourist (1988)
Warner Home Video
Cast: William Hurt, Kathleen Turner, Geena Davis
Extras: Commentary Track, Deleted Scenes, Featurette, Trailer

Macon Leary (William Hurt) is a stoic travel guide writer, evaluating the world through the eyes of a business traveler who would rather stay at home than spend his days in hotel rooms and foreign cities. The loss of their 12-year old son a year ago has created a deep rift between Macon and his wife Sarah (Kathleen Turner) and they now decide to split up and go separate ways. Shortly after Macon meets Muriel (Geena Davis) an energetic young divorcee with a son of her own who breezes into his life like a whirlwind. Though being on entirely different ends of the spectrum, the two of them have the ability to give each other what they need. But Macon’s off-kilter family and Sarah’s attempts to rekindle makes it hard for Macon to jump over his own burdenous shadow.

Warner Home Video is presenting this wonderfully thoughtful movie in its original widescreen aspect ratio on this DVD. The transfer is absolutely clean and mostly free of defects. Image detail is very good and colors are faithfully rendered, re-creating the bleak world of Macon in all its non-existent splendor. No edge-enhancement mars the picture and the compression is also without artifacts.

The DVD contains the original Dolby Surround track of the movie that is perfectly sufficient. It is clean and clear and free of any sort of distortion or noise. Dialogue is well produced and always understandable.

A commentary track with Geena Davis is included on the disc, and it is thoroughly enjoyable to hear her talk about the film that earned her an Academy Award. Sensitively and sensibly she talks about the characters, the production the general issues the film touches upon and much more.

An introduction by Larry Kasdan and a featurette are also included, covering more about the background of the film. A large selection of deleted scenes is also included, adding additional depth to the film. However, many of them are very slow and would not have added anything more to the film. Still they are great to see nonetheless. The DVD is rounded out by the movie’s theatrical trailer.

’The Accidental Tourist’ is a very unique film. It is very serious on the one hand, but light-hearted at times on the other. Just like real life, we get a potpourri of emotions and situations that are neither just black or just white. I have thoroughly enjoyed this DVD and I am sure you will too.