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True Stories

review by James S.

 

Rated PG

Running Time: 89 minutes

Starring David Byrne, John Goodman, Swoosie Kurtz

Studio: Warner Brothers

Directed by David Byrne

Retail Price: $14.98

Features: None

Specs: Standard 4:3 format, English Dolby Surround Stereo, English Closed Captions

I had to see this movie. You see, I grew up in Dallas, and True Stories was filmed in and around the city. During the filming, David Byrne stayed a few blocks away from an aunt an uncle of mine. My uncle even had a bit part in the movie. Once I saw the movie, I was hooked. This quirky film shows a few days in the life of Virgil, Texas, a fictitious town. David Byrne is an out-of-towner who simply narrates and interacts with rather interesting members of the community. There is Louis, played by John Goodman, who is looking for a wife. Or the world's laziest woman (Swoosie Kurtz) who is wealthy enough to never have to leave the comfort of her bead. You follow the characters as they prepare for Virgil's Celebration of Specialness, which includes a fashion show with unique designs, a parade with lawn mowers and accordian players (look for my uncle), and a variety show.

 

The first thing you will notice about True Stories is the lack of a widescreen option. The full screen presentation gives it a TV feel rather than a theatrical release. In addition, the picture is grainy in spots and not much better than VHS.

The sound in True Stories is clear. Music is an integral part of the movie, as the Talking Heads released two albums (original sound track and versions of the songs sung by the band) in support of the picture. The music is balanced well with the dialogue. The audio, like the video, is basic. The sound is fixed to Dolby Surround.

Unless you consider chapter searches a feature, there are none.

The retail price of True Stories reflects the limited features of the DVD. True Stories will never be considered a standard by which to judge DVD players. It's cheap. It's funny. It's worthy of a watch.

(4/5, NOT included in final score)

(2/5)

(2/5)

(0/5)

(2/5, NOT an average)

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