Catwoman (2004)
Warner Home Video
Cast: Halle Berry, Sharon Stone, Benjamin Bratt
Extras: Featurettes, Deleted Scenes, Trailer

Patience Philips (Oscar Winning Actress Halle Berry) is a shy, reclusive graphic designer who works for a leading cosmetics company. When she accidentally overhears that one of the companies leading products causes severe side effects she’s "flushed" into the cities lake and left for dead. But when a cat named Midnight, with ties to ancient Egypt, breathes life back into her, she becomes Catwoman. Discovering her new catlike powers, Patience is determined to track down her killers.

What can I say? Is it really that bad? Well let’s just say that "Elektra" is a work of genius compared to this dreadful film. Director Pitof demonstrates that he has absolutely zero experience directing a cast, choosing a script and the editing features more cuts than a Michael Bay film if you can believe that. To think that Berry, hot off her Academy win for "Monsters Ball", agreed to star in this film is beyond me. In fact Berry’s performance is the only redeeming thing worth mentioning. She is able to consistently switch between her two personas believably and it doesn’t hurt that she looks extremely hot in her dominatrix uniform.

Sharon Stone plays Laurel Hedare, the wife and spokesperson for the cosmetics company who later becomes the lead villain with asinine powers. Stone’s character is so one-dimensional that it’s no surprise her performance is so bad. She might not want to consider this film her comeback. Benjamin Bratt is Tom Lone, a cop who rescues Berry from falling off a ledge early in the film and quickly becomes the love interest. His character is so clueless and pointless that I just can’t help but laugh as he puts two and two together discovering Berry’s secret. If you can sit through the entire film prepare for a laugh as Bratt’s character just magically shows up after the big climatic battle. And for those of you who have seen Lions Gate’s film "Saw", you’ll see more of that unwatchable spasm camera technique’s that appeared in that film

At least the DVD looks fantastic. Presented in <$16x9,anamorphic> 2.35:1 <$PS,widescreen>, the entire film is extremely bright and vibrant. I was blown away by how colors leap off the screen in every shot. Not a speck of dirt or film grain is anywhere in the print. The immaculate look to the film gives it a digital look that is sure to please. Details are easily visible in both foreground and background. Warner has done an excellent job with this film. The minimal number of bonus features help reduce the amount of compression required. As close to HD as it gets.

The <$DD,Dolby Digital> 5.1 (448kbps) mix is just as good. Unfortunately the movie’s soundtrack terrible but listen beyond that and you’ll experience an amazing, dynamic surround mix. Sounds are spacious and pan around the room at all times. Dialog is always crisp and detailed, never once taking you out of the film. No matter how bad the film soundtrack was I must say that I was drawn into the audio from the opening credits right through to the end. This is a great sounding disc.

The list of features for this disc are short, thankfully so, and I only spent the time checking out the Additional Scenes section. It was fascinating watching what was didn’t make the cut considering there are so many bad scenes in the final cut. The biggest of the bunch is the original ending and is worth viewing just to count the number of edits used as the camera pans around Berry and Bratt. Who hired this guy? The Many Faces of Catwoman, a Behind-the-scenes feature and Theatrical Trailer are areas I didn’t have any interests whatsoever viewing, but they’re there if you haven’t thrown the DVD from your player by now.

When this film was released last year I laughed at the comments friends and film critics made about how poor this film is. Roger Ebert said it best. "The director, whose name is Pitof, was probably issued with two names at birth and would be wise to use the other one on his next project."