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Permanent Record

review by Zach B.




David Sinclair (Alan Boyce) seems to have it all - he's a great student, has a girlfriend and he's a pretty damn good musician who's been accepted to a prestigious music school. But unexpectedly, David comits suicide at a party for reasons unexplained (though from when he's in the movie, he looks incredibly pressured and needs some stress management). The film follows his best friend and band mate Chris (Keanu Reeves) exploring what has happened as he tries to figure out what drove David to kill himself and tries to fill in and create a legacy for his best friend as best as he can.

Fun Fact: The late Joe Strummer of the band The Clash provided music for this film.



Presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen, it's very obvious this is yet another catalog release and that no care needed to go into this transfer. It's pretty grainy, it's dirty (blotches, blemishes and other nicks and pieces are abound) and it looks a little bit soft. Fleshtones are a little subpar but overall decent. Detail looks fine, but color saturation isn't too great. The transfer has good and bad... but overall, it looks rather average.



I'm not joking - the box of this DVD describes the sound mix as "English Ultra-Stereo Surround." In current terms, and from what it sounded like to me, this is some 1980s - or very odd way - of saying Dolby Surround. Sound effects are actually pretty good (like students screaming in the hallway) and all the dialogue is clear and sounds pretty nice. Still, what makes this track better than average is the film's music. The fidelity and dynamics of the track may not be terribly strong, but the music fills out the speakers rather well and pumps some life and depth into the track which make things sound rather nice and more full. English closed captions and English subtitles are also included.



Like most Paramount catalog releases, there is nothing.



"Permanent Record" never achieved classic status when compared to other teen films from the 1980s, but this one is worth a look since it deals with a serious subject matter rather well. While there are no extras, the presentation of the film is mainly above average and you can probably find the film for about 10 bucks. For those who like this one, you'll definitely want to own it - and for those feeling like plunking down a Hamilton on a whim for some 80s goodness, this may be your answer.

Studio: Paramount

Retail Price: $`14.99

Features: None

Specs: 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen, English Ultra-Stereo Surround, English Subtitles, English Closed Captions, Scene Selection (11 Scenes)

Released: February 17th, 2004



MPAA Rating: PG-13

Running Time: 91 minutes

Starring: Keanu Reeves, Michelle Meyrink Alan Boyce and Richard Bradford

Written by: Jarre Fees and Alice Liddle and Larry Ketron

Directed by: Marisa Silver