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The first big screen spin-off of the popular TV show, "Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie" follows Yugi and company as they battle Kaiba, with the use of their magical cards. But Yugi must also take on an Egyptian sorcerer, who's been brought back to life after 5000 years. Don't worry if this plot summary doesn't make any sense to you &emdash; your kids will understand it.
Fun Fact: "Yu-Gi-Oh!" has become a merchandising bonanza, particuarly in the word of collectible card gaming and video games.
If you're a widescreen "Yu-Gi-Oh!" fan, then you'll probably be really annoyed. Since this show is a kid property, Warner Bros. only has interest in presenting it in full screen (because I don't think a lot of kids enjoy black bars). Nonetheless, this is a pretty impressive transfer. The print is clean, there isn't any edge enhancement, black levels are strong and color saturation is really fabulous &emdash; they're vibrant and don't smear. A little inconsistencies like noise can be detected, but they don't harm a surprisingly sharp image.
The movie is given 5.1 Dolby Digital tracks (in English, French and Spanish) and despite the movie's material... the 5.1 comes across as pretty aggressive, and will get you into the movie a bit. The battles do stand out with some nice use of the rears, but other than that, the surrounds aren't too subtle or exciting. Dialogue is crisp and easy to hear, and the music &emdash; such as the score and the pop songs &emdash; work fine within the 5.1. Subwoofer use is also pretty decent. As far as subtitles, there are English, Spanish and French ones plus English closed captions.
Not too much: Yu-Gi-Oh Monster Challenge is a set-top DVD game of memory, and there are two hilariously awful Music Videos: for the songs "One Card Short" and "Step Up." And yes, there's the obligatory Theatrical Trailer (oh, what irony the trailer is in widescreen).
You also get a Yu-Gi-Oh card included in the box. Which is great, assuming you're under the age of twelve.
Given that you can now get this DVD for under 15 dollars, there shouldn't be any qualms about getting this DVD if you are or know any Yu-Gi-Oh! enthusiasts.
Retail Price: $14.99
Features: Yu-Gi-Oh's Monster Challenge, Music Videos, Theatrical Trailer
Specs: 1.33:1 Full Screen, English Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1, French Dolby Digital 5.1, English Subtitles, French Subtitles, Spanish Subtitles, English Closed Captions, Scene Selections (21 Scenes)
Released: November 16th, 2004
MPAA Rating: PG (Scary Combat and Monster Images)
Running Time: 90 minutes