Based on a true incident from 1972 and a magazine article by P.F. Kluge and Thomas Moore, Dog Day Afternoon swarms with energy, excitement, and drama. On a hot Brooklyn afternoon, two optimistic losers set out to rob a bank. Sonny (Pacino) is the mastermind, Sal (Cazole) is the follower, and disaster is the result. Because the cops, crowds, TV cameras, and even the pizza man have arrived, the "well-planned" heist is now a circus.
Special features are the same as those found on the DVD reviewed in Issue 107 and include commentary by Director Sidney Lumet; the documentary "The Making Of Dog Day Afternoon," which is available to watch in its 58-minute entirety or broken down into the chapters "The Story" (12 minutes), "Casting The Controversy" (14 minutes), "Recreating The Facts" (21 minutes), and "After The Filming" (11 minutes); a 10-minute featurette "Lumet: Film Maker"; and the theatrical trailer.
While the VC-1-encoded, 1.78:1 HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc releases do look dated, they show good detail considering the age of the original. Colors, for the most part, are muted and inconsistent, and black levels are milky. Source element artifacts are cleaned up very well, but edge enhancement can be noticed. Differences between the two versions are imperceptible. (Danny Richelieu)
The HD DVD's Dolby® Digital Plus and Blu-ray Disc's Dolby Digital 1.0-channel soundtracks sound good considering their age, but are still limited in their dynamic range and overall fidelity. There is some background noise that can be heard, as well as distortion. The HD DVD's Plus encoding does have a very slight improvement in overall fidelity. (Danny Richelieu)