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DVD Review: A Prairie Home Companion

Posted on Wednesday, November 8th, 2006 and updated on Wednesday, November 8th, 2006 2:25 PM

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Front Cover ArtworkA Prairie Home Companion
DVD - 1-disc Widescreen Edition
New Line Home Entertainment N10541 - Region 1
106 minutes

List Price: $27.98 (Check Price at Amazon.com)

Rated PG-13

 Theatrical This DVD
Aspect Ratio:2.35:1 2.35:1
(incorrectly labeled as 1.85 on the package)

Dolby Digital 5.1

Dolby Digital 5.1
Dolby Digital 2.0


Disc Contents

  • Movie
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Onstage at the Fitzgerald: A Music Companion
    • Musical and Advertisement segments that appeared in the movie
  • Come Play With Us: A Feature Companion
    • Behind-the-Scenes Documentary
  • Commentary with Director Robert Altman and Kevin Kline
  • Soundtrack Preview
  • Sneak Peeks
  • Online Content
    • Using the Interactual Player Software, this contained links to the New Line web site and something they call a "Hot Spot" which featured nothing about this movie.

About the Movie

I first saw this movie at ShoWest, the movie trade convention held in Las Vegas each Spring. Since I had never listened to the radio show, I was coming into the experience completely free of any expectations.

I came out of the movie with a smile on my face and positive impression, but I wasn't sure why. Others in the audience that liked the radio show got a real kick out of the movie, so I came to the conclusion that I just didn't get it, but those who did liked it.

After watching it again, I now realize why I liked the movie. It's a finely crafted movie that captures a fictional moment in time, anchored by good performances by an ensemble cast. The viewer feels like they are watching the backstage events during the final show of a production that has been going on so long that everyone in it feels like family. You feel privileged to be a part of it, and you feel a sense of longing when it's all done and over with.

That's a sign of a well-done movie. I'm looking forward to sharing this movie with others with my recommendation.

How Does it Look?

The picture is soft throughout most of the movie, but this may be intentional. It has been several months since I saw it in a theater, so I don't remember if that was the case there as well. Nonetheless, this isn't the kind of movie in which a super-sharp picture is required, so it won't detract from your enjoyment of the movie.

How Does it Sound?

The sound is average, but up to the task. Nothing remarkable here, but it doesn't need to be. If anything, an over-produced sound environment would distract from the enjoyment of the movie.

Recommended Reading

Don't just take our word for it, check out these resources for more reviews of the movie and of the DVD.

Netflix, Inc.
Check Prices on Amazon.com

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