DVD Review by David Blackwell
DETAILS: 123 minutes, two audio commentaries, deleted scenes (with optional commentary), three featurettes, and previews
STUDIO: Paramount
RELEASE DATE: 8-30-2005

SAHARA is definitely a fun adventure. It may not be smart as an Indiana Jones movie (Indiana Jones ahs set a pretty high standard), but it is at least entertaining enough. Clint Mansell's music score feels like Clint is auditioning to be the composer for the next James Bond film. SAHARA follows the adventures of Dirk Pitt (Matthew McConaughey). He is with his trusty buddy Al (Steven Zahn) on the search for a missing Confederate Ironclad from the American Civil War. Their search takes them into a war torn African country. They cross paths with a beautiful doctor (Penelope Cruz) on the way. The doctor is searching for the source of a plague. They face danger from the country's dictator and find a toxic secret that is the cause for the deaths of so many people. The action sequences are filled with energy while the adventure is cruising with humor to spare. Too bad SAHARA didn't find long legs at the box office. I hope many people will discover this fun film on DVD.

VIDEO: 2.35:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen)
Colors and shadow values are good, buta little aliasing does show up. It isn't too distracting. Image detail is OK.

AUDIO: English 5.1 Dolby Digital, English 2.0 Dolby Surround Subtitles: English, Spanish (special features except commentaries have subtitle option) Dialogue is clear. Songs are loud whhile the sound effects have a good punch. Extras are in English 2.0 Dolby Surround.

Two audio commentaries were recorded for the movie: the first with Director Breck Eisner and the second with Brack and actor Matthew McConaughey. I prefer the first commentary because it gets more into the details of the production.

Four deleted scenes (with optional commentary by the director) are an interesting bunch, but I can see why some of them were cut. One scene features an on-screen kiss that was cut and another is a scene that fills in the details of a crashed plane.

Three featurettes are on this DVD:
ACROSS THE SANDS OF SAHARA- production difficulties with mother nature, casting of SAHARA, and behind-the-scenes stories from the production
VISUALIZING SAHARA- Creating a lense filter to help the look of the film, costume design, storyboards and pre-viz, and vissual effects works (teh solar plant and the stunt work for boat chase).
The CAST AND CREW WRAP FILM shows that everybody had during the making of SAHARA.

FINAL ANALYSIS: While you wait for the next Indiana Jones film, SAHARA is good fun to rent on DVD.

this DVD Review is (c)8-19-2005 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission. Look for additional content at and send all comments to