One of my all time favorite movies I've been pining over for since the inception of DVD. Actually, I'd hoped it was released on laserdisc and in widescreen. After a couple of years, a Japanese version on LD popped up and I snapped it up (for $90 no less). Alas, it wasn't in widescreen, and looked slightly better than the VHS version. Now we have the DVD release and it's pretty damn good. Video When the movie first opens, I nearly had a heart attack. Not at the picture quality, but during the opening credits the movie was framed in a "15:9" ratio with vertical black bars on the left and right of the picture. I freaked, and in checking the box, saw that it was listed as 1:85:1, but certainly wasn't showing up this way. Once the intro credits were finished and the movie actually began, the freaky ratio was gone and the movie then appeared in 1:85:1. Picture quality in the first 1/3 of the movie is average. The picture is soft looking, and in some cases looks blurry. Additionally, it's also kind of dark. Did I mention film grain? This is readily apparent throughout the movie. Once our hero Rick Kane starts his surfing adventures, the picture not only brightens up, but the picture begins to render a very sharp image. In fact, other than the beginning of the movie, the picture (some surfing scenes being an exception) remains sharp and bright until the end of the movie. The surfing scenes, primarily when the camera is on a surfboard or in the water, are very grainy. The film grain doesn't help compression artifacts, because they are definitely present during these scenes. It's not bad nor detracting, but definitely there. I noticed no edge enhancement (might be there, but certainly not objectionable). I'd have to give the first part of the movie (until Rick begins surfing in Hawaii) a 2 for picture quality, with quite a few beach scenes reaching a 5, but the movie as a whole averaging 3.5 in terms of picture quality. Audio The audio is 2-channel Dolby Digital, and I found it rather lacking. The soundtrack should have been pumping, not to mention the waves breaking, but I found the bass severely lacking. The audio while not bad, felt collapsed with no real surround imaging. The surrounds got very little use in my opinion, and the bass (lack thereof) was disappointing. I found the PCM track on the LD much deeper and cleaner, but who knows where the audio was sourced from for this release. Extras The extras are actually kind of cool, and I'm glad it got some attention. There are deleted scenes (3 of them) that are played in order. Of the three deleted scenes, only one is what I refer to as a deleted scene. The other two are extended scenes that appeared in the movie. Deleted Scene 1 The first scene has Rick telling his mom about Lance Burkhart making $100k, and her disbelief. After they pack up the car, he runs back in to get his drawing tools which are later stolen Deleted Scene 2 This scene wasn't in the movie at all, but has Rick tasting food that Chandlers wife Anela is making. She sees the beat up clothes he has on, and tells him he can't go into town to see Kiani dressed like that. She offers him some of Chandlers clothes There is also an alternate ending that I am really glad they abandoned the idea for. Not only was it a lame way to end the movie, and kind of a down and cold note, but just didn't fit. Ironically, this scene features the original Kiani cast for the movie (she was fired early in the production of the movie). When you see it, I think you'll agree it was a smart move getting Nia Peebles in. Lastly, the disc has cast interviews with all the primary players (Matt Adler, Greggory Harrison, Laird Hamilton, Nia Peebles, William Phelps, and Turtle of course!) that were filmed just recently. The interviews are short, but well done and definitely give some behind the scenes making of for the movie. At $15 (what I paid), I love this movie. The soundtrack, the imagery, and the surfing are just fantastic.