The infectiously enjoyable comedy musical "Grease" made superstars out of John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John. As you'll find out from the new DVD release, the sheer energy of the film was very much born of a cast and crew that had a riot of fun making the movie.
Picture Previous VHS releases of this film suffered from an abnormal amount of grain. This has improved for the DVD transfer, but could have done with some restoration work. For most of the ride the colours are bright and detail good, but certain scenes could look cleaner, and the print is suffering from the type of minor damage that could be digitally erased.
Sound Ah, here's the feature of the DVD to relish and Paramount deserve praise for their 5.1 update of this film. The musical numbers come loaded with bass, and have been mixed to take full advantage of the available speakers. The picture could still be better, but once you hear this track, it'll please you no end.
The Grease Yearbook It might only be 16 minutes long, but this retrospective look back at a 70s classic contains new interviews with all the main players. Just why they've all made time to appear is probably best summed up by Travolta's comment that "I wouldn't trade it for any other movie I've been in".
It was director Randal Kleiser's first motion picture but he didn't worry about that, and instead took advantage of "the high school sensibilities on set". If cast members were mixing well off camera, he would find a way to use that energy in a scene, and ad-libbing was encouraged. It's a policy that seemed to work well, with comments like "everyone loved being there", and "it wasn't like work", littering the featurette.
There are a few frames of behind-the-scenes footage, plus material from the premiere that shows just how massive the impact of the film was.
Additional Extra Features Also on the disc is a trailer, plus accompanying the DVD is a nicely-produced songbook so you can sing along to the catchy numbers.
A few minor additions would have greatly improved this release. A song chapter menu that takes you directly to the songs with karaoke-style titles during them would have been good. This is the type of film that's watched repeatedly by die-hard fans. Why not add a subtitle track of facts and quotes that could run throughout the movie to give fans a new perspective on the movie?
Ratio: 2.35:1 (anamorphic)
Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1
Technical Features: Scene selection, multiple languages and subtitles, and English captions for the hearing impaired.