A clean and handsome-looking Blu-ray of Phillip Noyce‘s nicely sculpted Dead Calm (’89) will be out on 9.8.09. Hard to believe it’s been 20 years since I’ve seen it. A very tight and well-ordered thriller, to say the least. It’s a little bit curious to consider the way Nicole Kidman used to look. Sam Neill looked so young back then! (Who didn’t?) It’ll be nice to get a copy before I leave for the Toronto Film Festival.

Noyce, currently in post on Salt, his Angelina Jolie Russian spy movie for Sony, told me yesterday he hasn’t yet seen the Dead Calm Blu-ray.

“I spent several months on the original transfer back in 1990,which I presume was used to guide this version,” he recalled. “The original theatrical film was not presented in Dolby Digital surround, just the analogue Dolby SR. Blu-ray consumers would definitely benefit from a remastered 5.1 digial audio track, which could be included alongside the original. I’ve remastered the DVD sound for all my early Australian films in 5.1,including the mono tracks for Newsfront (’78) and Backroads (’77).”