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WSR Detailed DVD Review
Mommie Dearest

Genre: Drama

Reviewed In Issue 52 (Sept 2001) Of Widescreen Review®

Faye Dunaway, Diana Scarwid, Steve Forrest, Howard da Silva & Mara Hobel

WSR Review Scores
WSR Picture Rating: 3
DD Sound Rating: 3.5
DTS Sound Rating: NA
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Reference Systems
Critics' Composite Score: 2.5
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Special Features
Includes a trailer and photo gallery.

 DVD General Information

(Studio/Distributor): Paramount Home Entertainment
(Catalog Number): 01263
(MPAA Rating): PG
(Rating Reason):

(Retail Price): $29.99
(DVD Type): Single Side, Dual Layer (DVD9)
(Widescreen Edition): Yes
(Full Screen Edition): Yes
(Anamorphic Widescreen): Yes
(Running Time In Minutes): 129
(Color Type): Color
(Chaptered/Scene Access): Yes
(Closed Captioned): Yes
(Regional Coding): 1
(Theatrical Year): 1981
(Theatrical Release): Yes
(Direct-To-Video Release): No
(DVD Release Date): 07/17/01
(THX® Digitally Mastered): No

 Credits Information

(Director): Frank Perry
(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:
Based on the novel by Christina Crawford, daughter of legendary actress Joan Crawford, Mommie Dearest tells the controversial story of the famous woman not seen by the public eye. Her struggles to maintain her superstar status, desire to boost her public image, and desperation for a child to fill the void in her life, prompt her to adopt two children (Scarwid and Xander Berkeley). Her desire to provide a child with a wonderful and advantaged life results in exposing them to her personal frustrations, leading to graphically depicted abuse. (Suzanne Hodges)

DVD Picture:
The anamorphically enhanced 1.78:1 DVD exhibits a dated picture, but one that is generally well rendered throughout. Colors can be quite rich and generally well balanced, with occasionally brownish fleshtones, and slightly weak blacks. Overall, the picture is slightly soft, but details are nicely rendered. The source element is revealing of dirt and artifacts throughout, as well as a considerable amount of film grain. At times edge enhancement is noticed. (Suzanne Hodges)

The Dolby Digital 5.1-channel remastered soundtrack is apparently the result of the incorporation of a re-purposed stereo music score, along with the mono audio, processed for dimension. The original audio sounds well-restored, with freedom from background noise. The dimensional spread across the screen is fairly satisfying. The music nicely envelops the listener across the screen. There is a general balance of the audio toward the screen. This is a nice updating of the vintage mono audio to current standards. (Perry Sun)