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Preview Image for What Women Want (UK)
What Women Want (UK) (DVD Details)

Unique ID Code: 0000020273
Added by: Chris Cox
Added on: 13/9/2001 04:58
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    Review of What Women Want

    8 / 10


    What Women Want was one of this year`s first "big" cinema releases, and stars Mel Gibson and Helen Hunt.

    Gibson`s life is turned upside down when firstly he is overlooked for promotion and Hunt gets "his" job, and secondly a freak accident leaves him with the ability to hear women`s thoughts.

    Gibson soon realises the potential of his new ability to further his career at Hunt`s expense.


    The video comes in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen and as you would expect from a high profile movie which first aired at the cinema earlier this year, is of a very high standard throughout the movie. The picture is stable and free of any dirt or grain, and the image is detailed and focussed at all times.

    Being a comedy, the film doesn`t offer much in the way of special effects, however it`s very well made, and certain scenes (for example Gibson`s evening foray into Hunt`s box of products) are fantastically entertaining without the need for any flashy visuals.


    The soundtrack is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1, and whilst not offering any reference quality scenes, is more than competent throughout and makes good use of atmospheric effects.

    However, the emphasis is clearly on the dialogue, which is always clear and easy to understand.


    The range of extras on the disc includes cast and crew interviews, the trailer, TV and radio spots, a quiz offering a "prize" of the US film premiere featurette, a commentary and a behind-the-scenes featurette.

    The behind-the-scenes featurette runs for 15 minutes and is of the "extended trailer" genre featuring interviews over clips of the film and some narration. As a result this featurette is of limited interest and offers very little to anyone who has watched the movie.

    The quiz is very gimmicky, and to be honest the prize featurette should have been a straight choice from a menu – however, being just a couple of minutes long, it`s not especially exciting, and contains clips from the film along with an interview with Gibson at the premiere.

    The interviews are more of the same – clips from the film with various interview clips with the stars and director.

    The commentary track would have been improved by the inclusion of Mel Gibson who adds a bit of sparkle and humour to the commentary tracks that he has done in the past.

    Overall, despite what looks like an impressive feature count, on closer inspection the extras are little more than regurgitated trailer clips and interviews, and as such don`t live up to their promise.

    The extras are navigated via a series of animated menu which are a bit irritating after a while at the transitions take too long. In addition, I had a bit of trouble finding the interviews!

    The disc is packaged in an orange Amaray case, which contains a single page colour insert detailing the 20 chapter breaks.


    I saw "What Women Want" at the cinema and have now watched it at home on this DVD – I enjoyed the film both times, but can`t help feeling that it didn`t quite live up to the promise of the plot. The film starts well enough, and the scene where Gibson gets his ability to hear women`s thoughts is unbelievably funny. Similarly, as the film develops the plot, the good humour continues, but when it turns into a romance, it runs out of steam slightly, and the last 30 minutes or so really drags. The film runs for 121 minutes, and I can`t help feeling that some sharp editing and removing some of the later scenes altogether to give a 90 minute duration would turn a very good movie into a fabulous one.

    As far as the acting goes, you`ll not be surprised to know that Gibson is a joy to watch at all times, with Helen Hunt and the other supporting cast members also superb.

    The picture and sound are both good, but the extras listed on the back of the box don`t quite live up to their promise.

    Overall, this is an entertaining movie, which is well presented on DVD.

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