What happens when a Houston Texas petroleum firm discovers the perfect location for its new oil refinery in a Scottish seaside village? It attempts to buy the village of course. This charming film begins as a simple fish-out-of-water comedy when Knox Oil's star negotiator journeys to Scotland in an attempt to out-fox the money hungry natives. Local Hero isn't content to stick to convention though and its plot is filled with interesting twists, unexpected turns and plenty of dry British humor. Peter Riegert and Burt Lancaster deliver wonderful performances and the supporting cast is filled with unique and unforgettable characters.
The film elements used for this transfer are in very good shape. There are a few holes and one or two scratches but the overall condition of the film is much better than I expected. The DVD transfer on the other hand has some minor problems. Colors are a little muted throughout the film and the picture looks consistently soft. There are no edge effects, shimmer or compression artifacts but the material seems a shade dark in most scenes. These facts are minimized though as Local Hero enjoys an anamorphic transfer (something the studio could easily have declined to produce given the soft comedic nature of the film.)
The audio track is the original mono version from the theatrical release. Nothing very stunning about it beyond the facts that it's free of hiss and presents the dialogue clearly.
Local Hero contains two extras. First there's the original theatrical trailer, which is in as good condition as the feature itself. The disc also contains both full screen and widescreen versions. I would have liked to have seen more ancillary content on the disc but the film stands well enough on its own and doesn't really scream for flashy extras.
If you liked Waking Ned Divine you'll probably enjoy Local Hero. The low-key humor will especially appeal to fans of British comedy. In sum, Local Hero is a fine piece of entertainment, well worth at least a rental and for some should make a nice addition to the collection.