Click above to purchase "The Prince Of Egypt (Dolby
Digital)" at amazon.com
The Prince Of Egypt
review by Zach B.
Running Time: 99 minutes
With the Voices of Val Kilmer, Ralph Finnes, Danny
Glover, Sandra Bullock, Jeff Goldblum, Michelle Pfeiffer,
Patrick Stewart, Helen Mirren, Steve Martin, Martin
Directed by Brenda Chapman, Steve Hickner, Simon
Retail Price: $34.99
Features: Commentary With Directors Brenda Chapman,
Steve Hickner and Simon Wells, The Making Of "The Prince Of
Egypt", "When You Believe" Multi-Language Presentation, The
Basics Of Animation: The Chariot Race, Focus On Technical
Effects, The Prince Of Egypt Art Gallery, Theatrical
Trailers, Sneak Previews, Cast and Crew Bios, Production
Specs: 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen, English Dolby
Digital 5.1, English Dolby Surround, English Subtitles,
Chapter Search (28 Chapters)
After Dreamworks formed way back in 1994, many people
were wondering about their animation department. With
mastermind Jeffery Katzenberg on board, it was no doubt that
Dreamworks would be the first true challange to the Disney
empire. Considering Katzenberg brought out such animated
Disney hits, why not do the same for Dreamworks?
Their first foray into animation was "The Prince Of
Egypt". While it didn't break box office records, it did
very well worldwide and made over 100 million dollars
domestically. The film was well liked by audiences and
critics. While "Prince Of Egypt" was not perfect, I really
did enjoy it, and it really did show that Dreamworks had
what it takes to go against Disney.
For those unfamiliar with the story of Exodus, the film
follows Moses, who is sent away by his mother in a basket in
hopes he doesn't have to experience a hard life. He is found
by the Pharaoh's wife (though many believe she actually
didn't find him), and Moses is brought up into royality.
However, after years and years, Moses is unaware of his past
and where he came from. Soon enough, Moses is exposed to his
past and realizes that he has a mission, to let the Hebrews
go. This of course comes with conflict against his brother,
Ramses, who won't let them. Now here's a spoiler you should
all know: they are freed in the end.
I'll first start off by saying the animation is
Disney-quality, if not, better. It's detailed, it's very
fluid and it looks very pretty. The film has some excellent
character designs as well as scene designs, with some bold
colors. It also belnds CGI in quite well. Dreamworks has a
lot of talented artists, and for a first film, it's quite
In similar style to Disney films, the movie has an all
star cast. You got your Val Kilmer, your Ralph Finnes, your
Jeff Goldblum... a really nice cast with strong voice
performances. I enjoyed all of them. Patrict Stewart has a
smaller role but he's very strong as Ramses' father, and
there are pretty nice performances Sandra Bullock and Danny
Glover. An overall strong cast who brings the timeless story
The music in this film is phenomenal. Many people I know
loved it, many I know hated it. I really enjoyed the music
personally. Hans Zimmer score is really, really beautiful
and fits so well during the scenes. The score is rich and
full of life. There's also a variety of songs from Stephen
Schwartz, who's won Academy Awards® for Disney songs,
and won an Oscar® for this movie for the song "When You
Believe". Schwartz wrote all the music and lyrics, and he
has a wide variety of songs with catchy tunes and lovely
words. If you like movie music at all, you'll definently
love the stuff that's in the movie.
The movie itself is very well paced and has some
fantastic dialogue. It follows the story very well and with
much accuracy, and no one should be disappointed. There are
a lot of intense scenes and a lot of good lines, and it
should be noted that they're are no cute Disney sidekicks or
even any funny lines (I only thought there was one thing
funny in the movie that you may laugh at - a camel drooling
toward the end). It's a pretty serious movie, but it's very
entertaining and does it all right. Still, I wish there was
more conflict between Moses and Ramses.
"The Prince Of Egypt" is a fantastic animated film and
will go down as one of the best and most historical as time
goes on. Not only because this is Dreamworks' first movie
and it took A TON to make it, but this is a story that will
last and be remembered forever. If you like the Bible or
animation in general, don't miss this movie or this
spectacular DVD release from Dreamworks.
"The Prince Of Egypt" is in its original theatrical
exhibition, 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen (and no full frame
transfer for families). The image is incredible, it's very
crisp and really, really sharp. This film has some
tremendous visual beauty and this transfer really shows off
the deep, illustrious colors and wonderful designs. Detail
is excellent and so are black levels, it's pretty much a
flawless transfer except for the bits and grains here and
The Dolby Digital 5.1 is fabulous. Hans Zimmer's haunting
but triumphant score is marvelous, and there is some deep
bass extension. The audio shines in the chariot race, the
red sea sequence and also the songs in the movie. There's a
great amount of surrounds. This is a great track to show off
your system with. Also included is Dolby Digital 2.0 track
and English subtitles.
This Signature Selection release from Dreamworks features
a load of features, starting with a great Commentary With
Directors Brenda Chapman, Steve Hickner and Simon Wells.
This is a very informative track, though it is pretty dry.
They share some laughs here and there, but the movie is such
a beautiful film visually and I'm sure like many of you, I
was curious how certain things were done. This is a constant
track with no gaps, and what impressed me is that how the
directors remembered the names of so many people. If you
liked the movie and you want to know more about the
technical side of film, give this a spin.
The Making Of The Prince Of Egypt lasts 26
minutes, and is pretty interesting, though pretty fluffy. I
believe this aired on HBO. It's a good watch, though you
won't gain too much out of it. It features interviews, clips
from the film, some behind the scenes stories and more.
An amazing tidbit about "The Prince Of Egypt" was that
Dreamworks wanted to really make this movie global. When the
website launched it was in several languages, and the
Multi-Lanuage Presentation has the song "When You
Believe" in a whole lot more. It's really interesting and I
found myself watching it a few times.
The Basics Of Animation: Chariot Race showcases
one of the most breathtaking scenes in the movie and how it
was exactly accomplished. It has interviews at the start and
basically shows the progress from the story reel to final
animation. It is narrated by two of the directors, Simon
Wells and Steve Hickner. It lasts nine minutes and thirty
Focus On Technical Effects has behind the scenes
footage and clips from the film, and shows various scenes
with different techincal effects. Animation can be very
complex, all from CGI to regular animation. If you're
interested at all at some of the amazing animation, watch
this. Sadly, it only lasts six minutes.
The Prince Of Egypt Art Gallery shows off art from
the movie with Hans Zimmer's beautiful score behind it. You
can't control the slides, but there's a good amount of them
Two Theatrical Trailers for the film are
showcased, each in non-anamorphic widescreen and 5.1 Dolby
Digital. Round the disc off are Cast and Crew Bios,
Production Notes (also in the keep case insert) and
Sneak Preview Trailer, showcasing Dreamworks'
animation line-up for the year 2000. "The Road To El Dorado"
and the claymation farce "Chicken Run" (by Aardman, one of
my favorite animation studios around, they did "Wallace and
Gromit"). Both look fantastic, and show that Dreamworks is
going to be a very strong contender against Disney.
Dreamworks delivers an amazing achievment in animation
and an amazing DVD. A fine show-off piece with great
features, if you like epics or animation in general, don't
hesitate to add "The Prince Of Egypt" to your collection.
(4/5 - NOT included in
NOT an average)