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From director Wolfgang Petersen (Troy, The NeverEnding Story) comes a tale of two enemies thrown together in a hostile world where to survive they must become allies.

A soldier from Earth crash-lands on an alien world. Eventually he encounters another survivor, but from the enemy species he was fighting; they band together to survive on this hostile world. In the end the human finds himself caring for his enemy in a completely unexpected way.

Starring Dennis Quaid (The Right Stuff, The Day after Tomorrow) and Academy Award Winner Louis Gosset Jr. (An Officer and a Gentleman) this sci-fi adventure is a tale of an unexpected friendship and newly found respect. Eureka Classics presents the film in high-definition for the first time in the UK in a special edition Blu-ray.
(Taken from the official synopsis.)

Video


Those of you who paid big bucks for Twilight Time's release of Enemy Mine (especially at after-market eBay rip off prices) might feel a slight twinge of regret right about now. For all intents and purposes Eureka's release looks just as good as Twilight Time's; arguably better, even.

Clearly the same master was used for both versions, and the 2.35:1 images are ostensibly the same, but the encoding on the Eureka disc is every-so-slightly better. The rest of the presentation mirrors the Twilight Time effort though, presenting a nicely detailed image that is generally free from dirt and debris. You'll see the odd speck here and there during the optical shots, but that's largely to be expected. Contrast is good, which is of paramount importance for a film set predominantly in space or on an almost perpetually dark world. Although blacks could not be described as inky they're solid enough and shadow detail is adequate. The colour palette is generally quite muted, but a number of key sequences showcase the virulent greens of foreboding pools and burnt oranges of alien sunsets. There are no particularly obvious signs of digital artefacting to report either and the image retains a suitably filmic appearance throughout.

Audio


We get two audio tracks here: a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.0 effort ('improved' from the 4.0 track on the Twilight Time release) and an LPCM 2.0 Stereo affair. The stereo track would appear to faithfully recreate the theatrical experience, but the multi-channel track goes one better by providing opportunities for the effects and music to spread their wings. Of course, while the surrounds are employed to good measure it’s still generally a front-heavy affair by design, so don’t expect the sort of directionality you’d get from a more recent feature. Happily dialogue is rendered clearly throughout and the score is also well represented in the mix. The lack of a dedicated .1 channel obviously doesn’t do the lack of bass any favours, but truth be told this isn’t the sort of film that demands earth-shattering LFE.

Extras


The Eureka release of Enemy Mine feature the same isolated score track and theatrical trailer found on the Twilight time release, but goes one better with the inclusion of an extended scene. Presented in rough standard definition it's not the prettiest looking thing you'll ever see, but it's a nice little bonus all the same. The retail set also comes furnished with a collector's booklet, but we didn't get a copy of that with our review disc.

Overall


I can remember being fairly nonplussed about Enemy Mine as a child, I think largely due to my love of more action packaged science-fiction and fantasy films. However, when viewed again through more mature eyes the films charms become apparent. It’s got a lot of heart and features fine central performances from Quaid and Gosset Jr. as the spaceborne Robinson Crusoe and Friday respectively. It’s also a very attractive film with excellent make-up effects and some impressive, old school matte paintings and model work.

Eureka’s Blu-ray release currently looks to be the best available version of the film on home video, offering as it does ever-so-slight improvements over the Twilight Time disc in both the audio-visual and supplemental material departments. If you’re a fan this is an easy decision, but I feel confident in recommending Enemy Mine to science fiction fans looking for something a little bit different from the norm.

* Note: The images below are taken from the Blu-ray and resized for the page. Full-resolution captures are available by clicking individual images, but due to .jpg compression they are not necessarily representative of the true quality of the source.

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