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This review appears direct to the web courtesy of THE CINEMA LASER.

LONE STAR

LONE STAR ($40) has to be one of the most richly rewarding films to be released in quite some time. Here is a film complete with real characters and a real script that tells a real story. Writer director John Sayles takes his time telling the story of a small Texas border town, and the forty-year-old mystery surrounding the town’s corrupt former sheriff whose remains were found in the desert. Sayles, who also edited the film, stylishly integrates flashback sequences, which explains the mystery, as well as each character’s present motivation. LONE STAR is a character driven ensemble piece which gives every single performer a chance to practice their craft to its fullest. The outstanding cast features Chris Cooper, Elizabeth Peña, Joe Morton, Matthew McConaughey, Clifton James, Ron Canada, Frances McDormand, and Kris Kristofferson.

Columbia TriStar as given LONE STAR a great looking Letterboxed transfer which restores most of the film’s proper 2.35:1 aspect ratio. Sayles makes the most of the Panavision framing and there are occasional instances where characters slide off the edges of the frame. The transfer is quite well defined, with a sharp image and natural looking colors.

The digitally encoded Dolby Surround soundtrack has a sparse mix, with almost everything localized in the center channel. The Sony pressing was a big disappointment. Side three of my sample was heavily speckled, although sides one and two had an average number of speckles.

LONE STAR is a marvelous film, which I cannot recommend highly enough. Buy it or rent it, but make sure you see it.

 
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Laserdisc reviews are Copyright © 1997 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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