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THE GLIMMER MAN ($25) is an entertaining action film with a lot of comic overtones. Steven Seagal and Keenen Ivory Wayans are teamed as a pair of Los Angeles police detectives assigned to find a serial killer who crucifies his victims. Wayans street wise detective plays well off of Seagal’s character who has achieved spiritual enlightenment through Buddhism. But as it turns out, Seagal’s character wasn’t always spouting eastern wisdom. His past association with the shadier side of the US government gives him a special insight into solving this crime.

While THE GLIMMER MAN populated with stock villains, they are easily overlooked because Steven Seagal and Keenen Ivory Wayans really work well together. Their comic rapport is the heart and soul of THE GLIMMER MAN. Seagal’s teaming with Wayans actually enhances the action star’s rather shaky acting abilities, giving his screen persona a genuine sense of humor. I found THE GLIMMER MAN to be Seagal’s most satisfying film, and hope that the two will re-team for another film project. Bob Gunton, Brian Cox, Michelle Johnson and Nikki Cox fill out the cast of THE GLIMMER MAN.

Warner has done a terrific job with this DVD release. The DVD edition of THE GLIMMER MAN offers both the film in its proper 1.85:1 theatrical aspect ratio on one side, as well as a cropped pan and scan transfer on the other. The pan and scan version really isn’t the best way to view THE GLIMMER MAN. The cropped image really effects most of the action sequences. Since a Steven Seagal movie depends upon martial arts, many times you can’t see where a blow is coming from or where it’s landing. If you absolutely must view the cropped version, you’ll be happy to know that the image is sharp and the colors are practically identical to those of the Letterboxed version. The Letterboxed version is definitely the proper way to view THE GLIMMER MAN. The Letterboxed transfer really is quite good and identical to that of the Laserdisc release. In direct comparison, the DVD does have a slight edge over the Laserdisc in color fidelity. While the colors on the Laserdisc are quite good, the blacks are blacker on the DVD and the rest of the colors take on a firmer appearance. Since DVD is a digital medium, the colors do not bleed, which they do ever so slightly on the Laserdisc. All in all, the colors on the DVD are more natural and film like. The image on the DVD is only slightly sharper than that of the Laserdisc, so unless you are running a side by side comparison, the difference is negligible. I did observe mild digital artifacting in some of the more detailed backgrounds, but I had to actually concentrate to detect them.

The digitally encoded Dolby Surround soundtrack was identical to that which is encoded on the Laserdisc. The mix, while not too flashy, is solid and enjoyable in the action movie vein. The sound will certainly test the lower bass registry of your system. The DVD audio also offers a Dolby Digital mix, as well as a French language soundtrack. English, French and Spanish subtitles are available on the DVD. The DVD also includes interactive menus with cast biographies and production notes, as well as a theatrical trailer.




DVD reviews are Copyright 2008 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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