Fredi M. Murer
The secret life of children is fertile territory. The unsullied logic of those for whom preconceived notions and ossified received wisdom are phenomenon yet to come make for a piquant commentary on both. The innocence, the unrestrained emotion, and the intellect unfettered by the conventions of society are a potent combination in VITUS, a delightful Swiss import. It explores that territory from the point of view of its title character (doe-eyed Teo Gheorghiu), an 11-year-old mathematics and musical prodigy negotiating all too adult situations, from high-finance to first-love, with the single-minded, whole-hearted obsession that only the very young can muster without going mad.
Theatrical Release: February 2nd, 2006
DVD Review: Sony Pictures - Region 1 - NTSC
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|Distribution||Sony Pictures - Region 1 - NTSC|
Average Bitrate: 4.84 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s
NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.
|Audio||German (Swiss) Dolby Digital 5.1|
|Subtitles||English, French, Spanish, None|
Director Murer commentary
The Sony DVD image is kind of weak - there are artifacts that resemble grain but are too scattered and begin to be intrusive. The bitrate is abnormally low, detail is weak for a 2006 film and colors looks a shade washed. No, I don't think this was a very good transfer. Overall the image does not show any real strength especially for such a recent film.
Audio is acceptable with no glaring flaws and there and there are optional English, French or Spanish subtitles supporting the dialogue.
Supplements seem quite well thought out with a ho-hum commentary from director Murer. He has some decent things to say but his voice is quite poor as a commentarist - very deep, gravelly and quite accented so it's often hard to make out what the heck he is saying. The almost hour long Making of... is much better (superior to the film as well) and has some depth in regards to the production details. We are also given a nine minute interview with Bruno Ganz exposing nothing consequential, Teo Gheorghiu's four and one half minute screen test and finally seven deleted scenes (less than 2:00 each).
(NOTE: Someone may want to tell James Plath of DVDTown HERE that there's a commentary. He makes no mention of it in his review! - I admit to making the same mistake previously.)
In case you can't tell - I wasn't too crazy about this film. It started out as a blandish 'boy genius' saga - took and exciting twist but then dried up after that. So I don't recommend the film or the DVD at its current exorbitant price. There are much better ways to spend your DVD library fund.