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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Mystic Pizza
Mystic Pizza
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Review by Aaron Beierle | posted January 11, 2001 | E-mail the Author
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The Movie:

An enjoyable film that signaled a further boost for Julia Roberts' career, "Mystic Pizza" is an enjoyable, entertaining film about small-town life and the kids trying to leave it. Certainly that plot has been done before several times, but other without the same level of success. The movie isn't anything outstanding, but offers good performances and strong writing.

It revolves around 3 girls (2 sisters and their best friend) who work at the local pizza place. Kat (Annabeth Gish, whatever happened to her?) is babysitting to raise money for her tuition, and falls in love with the man whose daughter she's babysitting. Daisy(Roberts), finds herself involved with a rich student from across the tracks and Jojo (Lili Taylor) wants to be involved with Bill(Vincent D'Onofrio), but he wants to get married before anything else is going to happen between the two.

The performances are what really sell the movie, as the three lead actresses make for engaging and warm characters who we want to see succeed. There's also several funny moments and a couple that offer genuine emotion. I suppose that most will call this a "chick flick", but I think it offers something for everyone to enjoy.


The DVD

VIDEO: This is another average presentation from MGM/UA. With their plans to release more and more titles per month, it seems like quantity is more important than quality. For "Mystic Pizza" it's often more of an issue of not being that consistent, as the anamorphic transfer has some scenes that look good, while others aren't quite as well-defined. Sharpness generally looks pleasing, especially some of the brighter outdoor scenes, which often look crisp and detailed. Occasional scenes throughout the movie seem somewhat softer, and darker scenes seem a little murky, but not terribly so.

Print flaws weren't major, but appeared on a fairly consistent basis throughout the movie. Small marks, grit and some scratches appeared now and then, sometimes becoming rather distracting. Very light pixelation is briefly noticable a couple of times. The picture quality is generally watchable, but had it been a little smoother the overall viewing experience would have been more pleasant.

Colors are enjoyable, though. Bold colors occasionally shine through, and a few scenes show off nice Autumn colors. I didn't hate this presentation from MGM, although I didn't find the image quality to be anything to get excited about.

SOUND: "Mystic Pizza" is presented in Dolby 2.0. I went into this presentation certainly not expecting a great deal of activity, but instead looked for general quality, which is pretty decent. The low-key score sounds clear and crisp, although not very full or rich. It seems satisfied to be in the background and have minimal presence. It's dialogue-driven all the way, and dialogue generally sounds good, clear and fairly natural.

MENUS:: Menus are non-animated, with very basic images serving as backgrounds.

EXTRAS: And the extras are...a trailer.

Final Thoughts: "Mystic Pizza" is a popular film that actually is quite good. It's just that the DVD deserves better treatment. Mediocre audio & video quality and the trailer is all the that's on this pizza, but for fans it is at least available at a low price. Just don't expect the presentation to be too tasty.

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