SRP $29.99 1.85:1(16:9) DIGITAL SURROUND BUENA VISTA

One of the best films to come from STUDIO GHIBLI, "THE CAT RETURNS", is now available on dvd from BUENA VISTA.  While not directed by Miyazaki, he's credited with the concept and it has all the markings of the studio at its best. 

17 year old Haru, is an average teenager who becomes part of an extra-ordinary scenario after running out into a street to save a cat about to be run over by a truck. The cat she saved turns out to have been anything but average as well. It was none other than royal heir to the cat Kingdom, Prince Lune.  Once the cat king's agents forcibly invite Haru to spend the rest of her life with them, she gets assistance in escaping from a fat cat, a raven and a Baron-cat(voiced perfectly by Cary Elwes).

BUENA VISTA has given this film a remarkable transfer.  The film's correct 1.85:1 aspect ratio is intact, with 16:9 enhancement. It has a much more polished and defined look than either "PORCO ROSSO" or "NAUSICAA".  To be fair, it's a much newer film. But, there's none of the grain problems found in those transfers either.  Detail is superb throughout.

The English dubbed mix offers a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack. While the music is well balanced through all speakers, there are virtually no surround effects. The original Japanese mix is offered with 2.0 surround. Dialogue is always intelligible and free from distortion.

There are plenty of extras included here. The best, a documentary, follows the evolution of the film from short film to theatrical version.