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LOOK, UP IN THE SKY!
THE AMAZING STORY OF SUPERMAN

Superman is one of the greatest, if not the greatest comic book superhero characters of all time. LOOK, UP IN THE SKY! THE AMAZING STORY OF SUPERMAN ($15) is a nearly two hour documentary provides a highly detailed look at the character from its origins on the comic book page and his ever ascending popularity through newspaper radio, television and movies. Directed by Kevin Burns, executive produced by Bryan Singer and narrated by Kevin Spacey, LOOK, UP IN THE SKY! THE AMAZING STORY OF SUPERMAN has some obvious connections to the theatrical release of SUPERMAN RETURNS; however, the program is a whole lot more than a promotional tool for the most recent Superman film.

LOOK, UP IN THE SKY! THE AMAZING STORY OF SUPERMAN covers the characterís nearly seventy-year history, spending much of its running time on the early to mid portions of his career, where Superman was the original king of all media; going from the printed page to Fleischer Brothers cartoons onto the radio airwaves, into movie serials and then onto the small screen in the classic television series starring George Reeves. SUPERMAN RETURNS figures into the last fifteen minutes of the documentary, but not before the Man of Steel is featured in a bad musical, makes moviegoers believe that a man can fly, dies, is resurrected, gets married, returns to the small screen in both live action and animated form, not to mention having a highly successful case of teen angst. In addition to just looking drawings and film clips, LOOK, UP IN THE SKY! THE AMAZING STORY OF SUPERMAN features an extensive number of interviewees that include Forrest J Ackerman, Kate Bosworth, Dean Cain, Jackie Cooper, Richard Donner, Mark Hamill, Sam Huntington, Margot Kidder, Jack Larson, Stan Lee, Tom Mankiewicz, Bill Mumy, Noel Neill, Annette O'Toole, Jon Peters, Brandon Routh, Ilya Salkind, Gene Simmons and Lesley Ann Warren.

Warner Home Video has made LOOK, UP IN THE SKY! THE AMAZING STORY OF SUPERMAN available on DVD in a 1.78:1 wide screen presentation that features the anamorphic enhancement for 16:9 displays. In general, the program looks quite good, with variations based upon source material, which can go back as far as seven decades. Additionally, various aspect ratios have been compromised to the 16:9 widescreen proportions, either being cropped at the top and bottom, or at the sides. The newly produced footage is in pristine condition, offers a crisp looking image and has terrific color. Digital compression artifacts are never a cause for concern.

LOOK, UP IN THE SKY! THE AMAZING STORY OF SUPERMAN comes with a 5.1 channel track, which is nice, but as this is a documentary, the material rarely takes advantage of the formatís potential. Kevin Spaceyís narration sounds great, as his voice is warmly recorded and easy to understand. Vintage materials lack fidelity, but the program has been scored fairly well with John Williamís memorable SUPERMAN themes, which are rendered with a nice sense of presence. No other language tracks have been included on the DVD, but French subtitles are provided.

The basic interactive menus allow one access to the standard scene selection and set up features. No supplemental content has been provided, other than a few trailers that begin playing before the DVDís menus automatically start up. A Two Disc version of LOOK, UP IN THE SKY! THE AMAZING STORY OF SUPERMAN is also available for $5 more than the single disc version, but appears to be a Best Buy exclusive. The second disc offers several of Director Bryan Singer's Video Production Journals for SUPERMAN RETURNS, as well as mini Superman movie poster art reproductions.

LOOK, UP IN THE SKY! THE AMAZING STORY OF SUPERMAN is an informative and entertaining overview of the multimedia career of the most famous comic book superhero of all time. Warnerís DVD presentation is first rate, making the disc a definite acquisition for fans.

 

LOOK, UP IN THE SKY! THE AMAZING STORY OF SUPERMAN 


Look, Up in the Sky - The Amazing Story of Superman (2005)

ENHANCED FOR 16:9 TELEVISIONS 

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DVD reviews are Copyright © 2006 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.


 

 

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