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DVD Review by David Blackwell

DETAILS: 96 minutes, previews

STUDIO: Miramax/ Pandora

RELEASE DATE: 8-2-2005

ANALYSIS: CYPHER is like the story that Phillip K. Dick never wrote. This paranoid high tech sci-fi thriller has plenty of style of intelligence. In the best tradition of any story that is like Dick's, you have the issue of identity. Morgan Sullivan (Jeremey Northam) is hired as spy by DigiCorp. He is given the new identity of Jack Thursby and is sent to record speechs at conventions. Soon he is drawn into a conspiracy involving a mysterious woman name Rita (Lucy Liu) who tells him that he is being brainwashed and he must remember who he is and everyone at the conventions are people hired by DigiCorp to have heir old selfs erased and assume new identities to be the perfect double agents without knowing it. You could also say CYPHER is the result if William Gibson and Phillip K. Dick had a bastard love child. Director Vincennzo Natali creates a styliyish movie ten times better than CUBE. I love the choice of backlighting some characters in the movie. The unique choice of color and lighting is what helps sell CYPHER's atmosphere. I wonder what Natali could do if he had $100 million to make a movie. Keep an eye out for what Natali does next.

VIDEO: 1.85:1 (Anamorphic). Colors and blacks are well presented. Image detail is good, but aliasing is frequently seen throught.

AUDIO: English 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround sound

Subtitles: English, French, and Spanish

The dialogue and music come off OK.

EXTRAS: None. It is extremely disappointing that Miramax did not include any of the extras on the R2 release in the UK like the deleted scenes, featruettes, interviews, the audio commentary, and the trailer for CYPHER. All this great film has included are trailers for other films. Not a good job at all.

FINAL ANALYSIS: CYPHER is a smart cyber thriller that shouldn't be missed by fans of Phillip K. Dick and William Gibson, sci-fi fans, and anyone who loves thrillers.

this DVD Review is (c)7-29-2005 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission. Send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com and look for additional content at http://www.livejournal.com/users/enterlinemedia