The Doors DVD

Directed by: Oliver Stone. Starring: Val Kilmer, Meg Ryan, Kyle MacLachlan, Frank Whaley, Kevin Dillon, and Billy Idol.

The Doors movie

Synopsis: The story of Jim Morrison of the Doors. After briefly showing the car crash he witnessed as a child, the focus shifts to Morrison and keyboardist Ray Manzarek, fellow film students who decide to form a band. Great concerts and wild behavior ensue, up to Morrison’s premature death at age 27.

Sample quote: “Girl, we couldn’t get much higher”—Jim being naughty on the Ed Sullivan Show

Comment: This movie largely focuses on “wild and crazy” Jim, who’s not necessarily the type of guy you want to spend that much time with. The repeated scenes of him being drunk, stoned, rude, and violent get to be a bit much. However, the concert sequences are just exhilarating, and definitely worth repeated viewing. Recognizing that, the DVD provides direct access to each of these concert sequences—a very handy feature indeed. Rating: **½

The Extras: This is a “special edition” with two DVDs: one with the movie and Oliver Stone’s commentary (in which he addresses a number of criticisms of the film), and the other with an excellent documentation on The Doors, an interesting “making of” feature, an enormous number of deleted scenes (all with commentary), and a lot of other materials. If you’re a Doors fan, an Oliver Stone fan, a fan of this film, or just particularly interested in films and rock music, you’ll find something of value here.

Usability: Each disk starts with some short clips from the movie that are kind of cool. Disk 1 features three options: Play Movie, Special Features, and Audio Setup. The only thing that’s a bit odd there is that the Oliver Stone commentary is under Audio Setup rather than Special Features (though it makes sense if you think about it). Disk 2 is all special features, and is made easy to navigate by putting so many options at the top level. Deleted Scenes can be selected individually (just by number, though—there are quite a few) or you can play them all through by starting at “Intro.” Stone’s commentary sets them all up, then each clip is introduced by a script setup. Very snazzy.