DVD Title
 The Wolves
International Title
 The Wolves
Movie Length: 131 minutes Original Length: 131 minutes
Company: AnimEigo Release: 2008
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Anamorphic: Yes
Region: 1 Discs: 1
  
Language/Sound: Order
Japanese (2.0 Mono)
Subtitles:
English
Extras
· Menus (English)
· Chapters (18)
· Trailers: The Wolves, The Geisha
· Image Gallery
· Japan Map
· Program Notes
Captures
Review
Anthony Romero

AnimEigo, a company that by all regards will probably go down in history for releasing more Toho DVDs to the Region 1 market than any other firm, has an uneven track record to say the least. This release of Hideo Gosha's The Wolves ends up being a fairly middle of the road offering from them, with adequate video and audio quality that has few extras to supplement the movie experience.


 Video:

The video track included for the film is decent. The colors are distinct, but lack a rich array of depth that the format is capable of, with the blacks in particular not appearing as deep as they could have. The print used for the transfer has hardly any scratches to be seen, but contains a ton of grain. Level of detail present is good, although differs from scene to scene. Like many modern transfers, the disc uses a variable bit rate for the video track in order to save on space. Sadly, the process of achieving this on this particular transfer results in some scenes looking very sharp and others looking pixilated and blurry.

The Wolves is presented in its original aspect ratio of 2.35:1, and is Anamorphic for widescreen TVs.


 Audio:

In total, the disc contains two audio tracks, both in Japanese and in Mono. The difference between them is that one is the original source AnimEigo had for the film and the second is a restored version. Its an unusual twist to see both present, although its hard to say how many will appreciate having the option. Differences between the two are notable. As AnimEigo mentions on the DVD, the original source does contain a slight hiss, but this is fairly minor all things consider and it sounds fairly adequate. The second restored track, sadly, sounds a little subdued and feels like the levels, the highs and lows, have been reduced which is a likely byproduct of trying to compensate for the hiss. It will probably be up to listener preference, but I found the original source to be superior and more enjoyable to listen to.

The audio is complimented by removable English subtitles, with additional subtitles available for Japanese terms/expressions, and even further options to subtitle on screen text.


 Extras: Star Rating

AnimEigo has a well deserved reputation for often having fairly strange and, frankly, uninteresting extras on their releases, and The Wolves is no exception. On the plus side, the disc does contain the movie's original trailer and also one for The Geisha. A limited image gallery is also included. Sadly, the rest of the extras are kind of misses. There are the normal "production notes", which give background on the events of the movie from a historical perspective. There is also a map of Japan, which is particularly random given that geography doesn't even play a huge part in the movie.


 Overview:

Bottom line, there is nothing too great about this release, but for those looking to just enjoy the movie this is a more than serviceable DVD from the firm.