Genre(s): Drama, Comedy
Echo Bridge Home Entertainment | R – 116 min. – $14.99 | May 7, 2013
Directed by: Lasse Hallstrom
Writer(s): Clifford Irving (novel); William Wheeler (screenplay)
Cast: Richard Gere, Alfred Molina, Marcia Gay Harden, Hope Davis, Julie Delpy, Stanley Tucci
Theatrical Release Date: April 20, 2007
Features: Commentary, Featurette, Deleted Scenes, Outtakes
Number of Discs: 1
Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 5.1), English (DTS-HD MA 2.0)
Video: 1080p/Widescreen 1.85
Subtitles: English SDH
Disc Size: 27.2 GB
Codec: MPEG-4 AVC
Plot Outline: When the charismatic Clifford Irving (RICHARD GERE) convinces a major publishing house that Howard Hughes, the bigger-than-life billionaire recluse, has asked him to pen his authorized autobiography, Irving musy concoct an elaborate scheme to prove his fake manuscript is real. Inspired by Irving’s tell-all book, this tensely comedic story is a wild ride down the slippery slope of a lie run amuck.
SPECIAL FEATURES – 2.0/5
Feature Commentary – Director Lasse Hallstrom and Screenwriter Bill Wheeler sit down for a commentary that offers some information on the making of the film and on-set anecdotal stories. It’s a fairly dry track and the volume is pretty low so prepare to turn up your speakers.
Stranger Than Fiction (9:04; SD) is a making-of featurette chronicling how the hoax was concocted from those covering the news to the cast and crew for the movie.
Outtakes and Unused Clips (19:10; SD) and Deleted Scenes (13:31) are some excess shots removed or trimmed from the final cut. There’s also an optional commentary with the deleted scenes.
VIDEO – 4.5/5
Echo Bridge, via Miramax, releases The Hoax with a crisp 1080p high-definition transfer. Presented in its original 1.85 widescreen aspect ratio, this video looks almost stunning with excellent detail levels, a moderate amount of natural film grain and noise, and a fine color array which seems to match the director’s intentions of showing the 1970s. Given this is a budget title, I was surprised at how good this looked.
AUDIO – 3.0/5
On the flip side, the 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio has much to be desired. While the front and rear mixes sound decent, the front channel is awfully soft to the point that it’s hard to understand the dialogue some of the time, even more so when there’s whispering. Since this is a comedy-drama, there’s not a whole lot of action relying on the music and score so it’s not terrible but I was disappointed.
OVERALL – 3.0/5
Overall, The Hoax is a well made docu-drama/comedy with strong performances from Richard Gere and Alfred Molina. The story is interesting and mostly unknown making for a gripping drama on the whole. The Blu-ray release has some OK features, the audio was average but the video transfer was surprisingly excellent especially considering it is a budget title.