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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Out of Time
Out of Time
MGM // PG-13 // January 6, 2004
List Price: $27.98 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Shannon Nutt | posted December 5, 2003 | E-mail the Author
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THE MOVIE

The best reason…and maybe the only reason…to watch Out of Time is for the impressive performance by Denzel Washington. He takes what isn't that much better than a TV-movie script and turns it into a very watchable affair – all thanks to his ability to draw the audience in and make us care about what happens with his character.

Because so much happens in the first 30 minutes of the movie, it's almost impossible to discuss Out of Time without giving away some important spoilers. So this is your warning…if you want to go into this movie with no idea of the plot, stop reading now! Okay…I warned you! Don't send me e-mails complaining!


Denzel hanging out on the set…
Denzel plays Matt Whitlock, the police chief of a small town in the Miami area who is having an affair with a local married woman (Sanaa Lathan). Not only is the woman being abused by her husband (Dean Cain), but she finds out early in the movie that she is dying of cancer and only has about six months to live. Not long afterward, she names Matt as her sole beneficiary in a policy that will give him one million dollars upon her death.

Knowing that she doesn't have long to live, and believing he'll have the million dollars if she does, Denzel tries to help her out by giving her some drug money that he is holding for an upcoming case. But that same evening, she mysteriously disappears, and the next morning her house is burnt to the ground and both she and her husband are presumingly dead.

This, as they say, is where the fun begins, as we watch Denzel go from feelings of grief and guilt, to trying to hide his involvement with the women from the police and his ex-wife (as luck would have it, his ex is part of the police force too!), to eventually feelings of suspicion and anger as Denzel's character realizes he may have been set up.

Sadly, far too much of the story is predictable and clichéd, but Denzel manages to keep the viewer's attention and interest throughout. Out of Time may not be a movie you'll want to see twice, but it's certainly worth seeing at least once – if only for Washington's performance.

THE DVD

Video:
The video is presented in 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen, and is a pretty decent transfer, although there is a bit of grain to the picture, and the colors often seem just a bit oversaturated. However, those two complaints may very well have been intentional by the director, since he mentions more than once in his commentary and on the bonus material that he wanted both the color and the sweltering heat of the Miami area to play a character in the film.

Audio
The audio is presented in 5.1 Dolby and it's a surprisingly non-aggressive track. I suppose it's good enough to serve it's purpose, but it's wholly unremarkable. Viewers will also have the option of listening to the film in 2.0 Spanish, 2.0 French, or selecting English, Spanish or French subtitles.

Extras:
There's a nice number of extras on this DVD, most of which were quite enjoyable to listen to and/or watch. First, there's a Commentary Track from director Carl Franklin that's quite entertaining and informational. Franklin is one of those few directors that "get" what a commentary should be used for – and doesn't waste our time with restating things about the plot or the visuals that we can figure out on our own.

Also on the DVD is a 12-minute behind the scenes featurette entitled Out of Time: Crime Scene, which features comments from the director, actors, writer, and other members of the crew. Profiles are a collection of one-minute video segments that discuss the major character in the movie; while the Outtakes section features two bloopers from the film – one featuring Dean Cain and Sanna Lathan; and the other featuring Denzel and Sanna.

Viewers will also get to take a look at both Sanna and Dean's Screen Tests for the film, with three clips featuring Sanna and two clips with Dean. The Image Gallery is actually a motion slide show that lasts about 2 and a half minutes and has some nice music from the soundtrack in the background. There's also the Theatrical Trailer for Out of Time, shown in anamorphic 2.35:1 letterbox.

Finally, there are a number of additional Trailers on the disc, giving viewers the trailers for Anti Trust, BarberShop, Dark Blue and Die Another Day; plus a new teaser trailer for BarberShop 2 and two other MGM promotional trailers. It should also be noted that the DVD is front-loaded with a trailer for Jeepers Creepers 2 - just the kind of movie (please insert sarcasm here) the viewing audience of Out of Time should be interested in!

THE BOTTOM LINE

Like many other films in the crime-drama/mystery genre, Out of Time is one of those movies that you really have no desire to watch a second time once you know what happens. However, despite the fact that the storyline isn't that strong, Denzel Washington turns in another fine performance here – and he's the reason why you should at least put this one down on your rental list.
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