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WSR Detailed DVD Review
Genre: Adult Drama

Reviewed In Issue 73 (June 2003) Of Widescreen Review®

James Spader, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jeremy Davies, Patrick Bauchau, Stephen McHattie, Oz Perkins, Jessica Tuck, Amy Locane & Lesley Ann Warren

WSR Review Scores
WSR Picture Rating: 3.5
DD Sound Rating: 3
DTS Sound Rating: NA
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Reference Systems
Critics' Composite Score: 3.5
Internet Links
Special Features
Special features include audio commentary by director Steven Shainberg and writer Erin Cressida Wilson, a seven-minute Behind The Secretary featurette, and a still gallery.

 DVD General Information

(Studio/Distributor): Lions Gate Home Entertainment
(Catalog Number): NA
(MPAA Rating): R
(Rating Reason):

(Retail Price): $24.99
(DVD Type): Single Side, Dual Layer (DVD9)
(Widescreen Edition): Yes
(Full Screen Edition): No
(Anamorphic Widescreen): Yes
(Running Time In Minutes): 111
(Color Type): Color
(Chaptered/Scene Access): Yes
(Closed Captioned): Yes
(Regional Coding): 1
(Theatrical Year): 2001
(Theatrical Release): Yes
(Direct-To-Video Release): No
(DVD Release Date): 04/01/03
(THX® Digitally Mastered): No

 Credits Information

(Director): Steven Shainberg
(Screenplay/Written By): Subscribe Now!
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  DVD Picture Information

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  DVD Sound Information

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  WSR Narrative Review
Story Synopsis:
After spending time in a mental institution, Lee Holloway (Gyllenhaal) is sent home to live with her parents, an overprotective mother (Warren) and an alcoholic father (McHattie). Wanting to take care of herself, Lee applies for and gets a job as a "Secretary" working for E. Edward Grey (Spader), an attorney who warns her that she is overqualified for the job and will most likely be bored. Excited about her job she works hard and does whatever her boss asks of her, and when Edward starts abusing Lee and inflicting pain on her she revels in her new position. After realizing what she needs to be satisfied, Lee trys to get her boyfriend Peter (Davies) to be rough with her but he won't do it and can't give her what she craves. Furthermore, after her boss realizes that Lee enjoys the abuse, it no longer excites him and he fires her, much to her dismay. But Lee will stop at nothing to get what and whom she wants... no matter what she has to do to get it! Based on the story "Secretary" By Mary Gaitskill. (Tricia Littrell)

DVD Picture:
The anamorphically enhanced 1.78:1 DVD exhibits a picture with a slightly exaggerated color palette. There are lots of bright pinks, purples, and blues that pop from the screen. Fleshtones can be naturally balanced, and blacks are deep, but drop off slightly in darker scenes. The walls of the attorney

The Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo audio delivers a panoramic soundstage across the screen. This is particularly the case with the music, which sounds nicely recorded and has a palpable low-end foundation. The dialogue is spread across the screen, however, and spatial coherence of effects is wanting. (Perry Sun)