Crash Two-Disc Director’s Cut Edition—Lionsgate

Video: 4
Audio: 4
Extras: 3

This is a special one. The newly minted Academy Award winner for Best Motion Picture is set in L.A., but it could be about all of America, warts and all. Paul Haggis’ script (he also directed) has such depth and insight into thoughts that we have—sometimes fleeting, sometimes ones that are ingrained about race, stereotypes, and prejudice—that it makes you question yourself. The performances are superb. The cast turns in Oscar-worthy performances all around.

The 2.35:1 anamorphic picture captures the beauty and grunge of L.A., in both its landscape and its citizens’ actions. The Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack is a perfect platform for the absolutely stunning score by Mark Isham, which is, simply put, one of the great ones. When I think of Crash, I immediately think of the music—poignant, ethereal, and so lump-in-the-throat-inducing. Standout extras include featurettes on L.A. itself and the cultural influences thereof, including interesting interviews with the mayor and other community leaders. Crash is purely on another level. Just when you think you understand what’s going on, the movie turns you on your ear. It’s a fantastic depiction of how looks can be deceiving, how it may be right to question initial instincts and how first impressions aren’t always what they seem. When all the pieces fall into place on a film, you get art that’s thoughtful and brilliant.