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Speed (1994)

NOTE: These commentaries are only available on the "Five-Star Collection" DVD release of "Speed."

Commentaries on this disc:

Commentary 1: Director Jan De Bont Rating:6.4/10 (7 votes) [graph]Login to vote or review
Reviewed by sedna on December 9th, 2012:Find all reviews by sedna
This is the second commentary I've listened to with Jan De Bont, first being for Basic Instinct alongside Paul Verhoeven. It's there where I could tell he's got a voice and the right attitude for commentaries. This time he's on his own and we get to hear him talk about his thoughts on action films, process, and various technical bits. I usually listen to commentaries not so much for entertainment or even technical information - but the ideas and reasons for making a film, or to hear the given filmmaker speak his mind about the nature and process of filmmaking. Those bits are the best, and De Bont delves into these things here throughout. He has a pleasant voice, and he divulges quite a bit of information on how this was filmed. For instance, the opening elevator shot was actually a miniature! All the times I've seen the film I thought it was real! That says a ton about what these guys can do. True magicians. My favorites bits of information however where less about technicals, and more about just the philosophy behind making an action film or the nature of filmmaking in general. This is a worthy track, and I do recommend it.
Reviewed by Agressor on November 2nd, 2014:Find all reviews by Agressor
This was actually a pretty poignant and eclectic commentary, De Bont talks at length about the specific challenges of acting in an action film and seems to have great respect and empathy towards actors. This was something that I did not expect to brought up on a commentary for a high-octane film like Speed, but De Bont continually challenges my preconceptions of what an action-movie director is interested in. Other topics brought up are the way they had to cheat to make it appear that the bus is actually moving at 50 mph at all times when it in fact is often moving quite slower than that. Throughout he manages to touch on most topics concerning movie making but never lingers on it long enough to make it tedious which is appreciated.

The downside is that we get the usual gaps of silence a few times and there are also some repetition going on, it's like he emphasizes his points by bringing them up continually. Things like this is common in single-person commentaries and I usually prefer commentaries with two persons talking to avoid these pitfalls. The trade-off is that it usually results in a less focused and disciplined commentary.

Summing it up I'd say that this is slightly above average and well worth a listen.
Commentary 2: Producer Mark Gordon and screenwriter Graham Yost Rating:7.9/10 (17 votes) [graph]Login to vote or review
Reviewed by closedface on February 8th, 2005:Find all reviews by closedface
Gordon and Yost, who have a good chemistry from working together so often, talk frantically back and forth over Speed from it's story ideas to the sequel that they happily badmouth as they didn't work on it. Many times they interrupt each other to go on their own tangents, but over all it's a very informative and entertaining commentary. They pull no punches with regards to critiqing any and all parts of the movie, and even have a funny impression of De Bont berating the writer. Highly recommended. Hope they do a commentary for future versions of Broken Arrow and Hard Rain.
Reviewed by mills182 on December 2nd, 2005:Find all reviews by mills182
A fantastic commentary, worth the price of the disc alone. Gordon and Yost form a great double act, unafraid to have fun with their own movie.
Reviewed by stuartbannerman on January 2nd, 2006:Find all reviews by stuartbannerman
Excellant commentary. Its a breath of fresh air to hear these two talk honestly, and with a very light hearted tone.
So often Producers can talk with a very dull and mono tone but Mark Gordon is a hoot. As is screenwriter Graham Yost. The pair are reocrded together and have a great banter between them.

Its enough to make me seek out films with comentaries by thse two even if i didnt care for the film (yes im talking about a perhaps future Hard rain DVD)
Reviewed by Agressor on November 2nd, 2014:Find all reviews by Agressor
A joyful and high-spirited commentary from two friends who provide different viewpoints of the production. Mark Gordon, naturally, has the most insight to the making of the film and regularly has to correct Yost regarding the facts. Yost seems to be somewhat disillusioned about his lack of presence on set, but is often acting half-mockingly so it's hard to tell if he's sincere.

This is also a more "gossipy" commentary than De Bont's more serious contribution, we, for example, get told that Jeff Daniels didn't seem very fond of the movie as he was making it, likely expecting it to be a turkey. Further, they are not afraid to point out mistakes and goofs to us.

With the two of them being so comfortable with each other and shifting wildly between topics it gets somewhat fast-paced with topics getting abandoned without being explored fully, but as a companion peace to De Bont's more focused commentary this is a pleasant and enjoyable listen.

One thing I miss from both commentaries though is a mention on Joss Whedon's involvement in the script since he reportedly wrote 90 % of the dialogue.
Reviewed by frankasu03 on June 21st, 2015:Find all reviews by frankasu03
Agree with the review from closedface above. A very dynamic commentary from this hilarious duo. I also wished that Gordon and Yost would have collaborated to give us a commentary for their subsequent works, "Broken Arrow" and "Hard Rain." Both films that they modestly relate, "made less and less money" than "Speed." Probably my favorite writer/producer track. Perfect "10."