The Accidental Tourist appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.35:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. Though it suffered from some of the flaws connected to its era, the transfer held up well.
Sharpness usually appeared positive. Some interiors could seem a smidgen soft, but those remained minor distractions. Otherwise, the image stayed distinctive and well defined.
No issues with jagged edges or moirť effects appeared, and I witnessed no edge haloes. Print flaws also remained absent in this clean presentation.
A quiet, subdued movie, Tourist presented a quiet, subdued palette. Most of the movie demonstrated restricted tones, with the majority of the more vivid hues related to Murielís house and wardrobe. The disc handled the colors well.
Blacks were acceptably deep and firm, and shadow detail looked pretty concise. As noted, low-light shots could be a little fuzzy, but they usually appeared smooth. This turned into a pleasing presentation.
The DTS-HD MA 2.0 soundtrack of The Accidental Tourist seemed unremarkable but suitable for the project. No one would expect an aggressive mix for this sort of quiet drama, and the audio fit the material.
The soundfield betrayed a heavy emphasis on the forward channels, and those presented good stereo imaging for the music and a decent sense of environment for effects. The latter elements created a nice feeling of place in their gentle way, and meshed together pretty well.
The rear channels didnít bring much to the package. They added some reinforcement at times and occasionally portrayed some unique material, such as a plane that went from one area to another, but the back speakers remained pretty inconsequential much of the time. However, that seemed fine with me, as the flick didnít require anything more than that.
Audio quality appeared solid. Dialogue was natural and distinctive, as I noticed no signs of edginess or problems with intelligibility. Music was rich and fairly lush, as the instrumentation seemed clear and well defined.
Effects stayed minor but accurate, so they came across as clean and appropriately detailed. Nothing special occurred here, but the track supported the film acceptably well.
How did the Blu-ray compare to the DVD from 2004? Audio remained similar Ė the lossless DTS-HD MA track offered a little more breadth but couldnít do much with the restrictions of the source.
Visuals demonstrated more obvious improvements, though. The Blu-ray seemed notably better defined and cleaner, as it lost the print flaws from the DVD. This turned into an obvious step up in quality.
The Blu-ray duplicates the DVDís extras, and we open with an introduction from writer/director/producer Lawrence Kasdan. In this three-minute, 15-second piece, he chats about themes and his intentions, and Kasdan also gets into a few aspects related to the making of the flick and reactions to it. Kasdan presents a decent little examination of the movie, but he doesnít offer much depth due to the brevity of the program.
Next comes Itís Like Life, a 13-minute, three-second featurette about Tourist. This piece presents movie clips and comments from Kasdan plus actors Geena Davis and Kathleen Turner. Some of Kasdanís statements come from 2003, but most of the information stems from 1988.
We hear a few notes about characters, themes, and working methods, but the majority of the program simply shows shots from the flick and reiterates the story. Itís a surprisingly dull retrospective that presents little of use.
Additional information comes from a scene-specific audio commentary with actor Geena Davis. She chats for 38 minutes, 18 seconds of the movie and covers a mix of topics.
Davis gets into her desire to play Muriel and how she obtained the part, her take on the role, working on location and with Hurt, and her reactions to the Oscar experience. Davis provides a lot of bang for the buck, as her short discussion includes lots of great material.
The format makes it an easy listen: the commentary automatically skips from one scene to the next, so we donít get stuck with dead air. Davisís chat definitely merits a listen.
In addition to the flickís theatrical trailer, we get a whopping 18 lifted scenes. A substantial collection, these fill 37 minutes, 32 seconds.
Many of them present totally deleted segments, whereas others portray elements they later re-shot. Itís a generally interesting set, and we even find a few bits that probably should have made the final film. For example, one appears that makes Muriel look like a stronger character, though not in an inappropriate way; it actually rectifies one problem I had with her depiction.
Subdued and introspective, The Accidental Tourist presents an engaging drama with a gentle comedic side. Bolstered by a strong cast and a winning tone, the movie fares well. The Blu-ray provided very good picture as well as adequate audio and a decent smattering of bonus features. Tourist becomes an involving character piece.
To rate this film please visit the DVD review of ACCIDENTAL TOURIST