Rocky gives the Soviet Union a good beating in the ludicrous but shamefully enjoyable "Rocky IV". One of the top box office earners of the 80s, MGM have shoved it on a DVD and are clearly hoping for the best.
According to the sleeve, you can watch the film in either 2.35:1 letterbox or 1.33:1 fullscreen. The letterbox version is in fact widescreen 1.85:1 and it's not even anamorphic (a process which carries extra coding to create a more detailed picture on a widescreen TV). Dark scenes suffer from grain and shots of the sky during Sly's mountain work-out look murky. Suspiciously, as with the "Rocky III" disc, the picture improves for the final fight.
The 5.1 mix is good fun though. The ominous synth music whenever Drago is on-screen gives out wonderful low levels from the sub woofer, and Sly's crazy training sequences from barn to mountain sound great.
The one extra feature to treasure is a trailer. Interestingly, the old pre-boxset Region 1 release had an 8-page booklet. The new US box set disc is the same as the UK one, which means that fans on both sides of the Atlantic lose out when buying a collection that's been shoved together with very little effort or care. Apart from the "Rocky" DVD, the rest all suffer various defects that mean they only just scrape through the quality barrier. As a box set for a movie series that amassed such massive box office receipts, it's a pathetic effort and MGM clearly couldn't care less for the fans.
Ratio: 1.85:1 and 1.33:1 (fullscreen)
Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1
Extra Features: Scene selection, trailer, multiple languages, subtitles.
Read a review of the "Rocky" DVD.
Read a review of the "Rocky II" DVD.
Read a review of the "Rocky III" DVD.
Read a review of the "Rocky V" DVD.