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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Stand By Me: Special Edition
Stand By Me: Special Edition
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Review by Earl Cressey | posted September 6, 2000 | E-mail the Author
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C O N T E N T
V I D E O
A U D I O
E X T R A S
R E P L A Y
A D V I C E
Highly Recommended
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Review:
Movie:
Stand By Me, originally released theatrically in 1986, was directed by Rob Reiner and was based on the novella "The Body" by Stephen King. It features a host of stars: Richard Dreyfuss, Wil Wheaton, River Phoenix, Corey Feldman, Jerry O'Connell, Kiefer Sutherland, and John Cusack.

Stand By Me is the story of four friends: Gordie (Wheaton), who is coming to grips with his brother's recent death; Chris (Phoenix), who is trying to escape the stigma associated with his family; Teddy (Feldman), who is trying to cope with his father having been committed to a mental institution; and Vern (O'Connell), the overweight boy who is picked on constantly. All of the boys depend on each other for friendship and support, as their families are unable or unwilling to provide this for them.

While digging for pennies underneath his house, Vern overhears two of his brothers' friends talking about having found the body of Ray, a boy who had went missing several days ago. Vern immediately finds and tells his friends about this, and they decide to set off in search of Ray's body in order to find fame in the community. Their journey is often fraught with peril, be it from a gang of thugs (led by Sutherland), trains, or nature, but they stick together and discover the real friendship between them.

I found Stand By Me to be a terrific film. It had both moments of suspense and humor, and remained interesting throughout the entire time. All of the performances were top-notch as well. The ending was slightly disappointing, but the film on the whole is remarkable.

Picture:
Stand By Me is presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen. The print used is terrific; I only detected a few marks in one scene, and some minor pixelation in another. Flesh tones are accurate, and the colors are vibrant and detailed.

Sound:
Stand By Me is presented in Dolby Mono 1.0 in four languages: English, French, Spanish, and Portuguese. The soundtrack contains no distortion that I could detect, and the dialogue is crisp and clean.

Extras:
The biggest extras on Stand By Me are the commentary with Rob Reiner and the new featurette, "Walking the Tracks." The commentary was decent, filled with some behind the scenes tidbits and his thoughts on working with the actors. However, the "Walking the Tracks" featurette was terrific. It features interviews with Stephen King, Rob Reiner, Wil Wheaton, Corey Feldman, Jerry O'Connell, Kiefer Sutherland, and Richard Dreyfuss. The featurette is very informative and interesting, and is worth watching. Also on the disc are trailers for the Karate Kid and Fly Away Home (both full frame), seven cast and crew bios, the film's isolated music score, and the music video for "Stand By Me." Optional subtitles in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Korean, and Thai are included as well.

Summary:
The DVD for Stand By Me has a terrific transfer, decent sound, and quite a few extras, the most notable among them being the featurette. Highly Recommended.

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