An well made follow-up to the first film.
Why is there no commentary track with members of the cast on this DVD?
Jewel of the Nile is an interesting followup to Romancing the Stone simply because it does it's best to look at what happens when a relationship sours. At the end of Romancing the Stone, it is every man and woman's dream to see the two characters ride off into the sunset. We come into this new film with Jack Colton (Michael Douglas) getting used to being domesticated. It's a tough life for a man who is used to living by the seat of his pants. When his girl Joan Wilder (Kathleen Turner) is whisked to North Africa, Jack follows after her (with Danny DeVito in tow as Ralph) and the adventure begins again as they find themselves embroiled in a war and the search for a mysterious jewel. Throughout this great adventure, the question soon becomes do Jack and Joan have what it takes to stay together?
I thought Jewel of the Nile was well made and well told, it just lacked a lot of zip and humor that it's predecessor possessed.
Director Lewis Teague sits back and discusses this production from the ground up. He talks about how Michael Douglas brought him to the project and that his mantra to the actors was "RHB... Realistic Human Behavior." Then he goes into his history as a director where he freely admits that a lot of people may not know him. He talks about getting his start from Roger Corman and how great it was to shoot this movie in Morroco. This track is certainly worth a listen.
Romancing the Nile: A Winning Sequel Featurette
This is a pretty interesting featurette in that they discuss how the shoot of Romancing the Stone was very wet, so Michael Douglas decided to go the opposite route and make Jewel of the Nile in the Middle East. The creative people behind this movie also talk about living up to the expectations of the first film (something that Teague touches on in the commentary), the reasons for doing a sequel at all (the only one Douglas has done) and how screenwriter Mark Rosenthal's agents told him he'd never get this job.
Adventures of a Romance Novelist
I found this featurette to be somewhat redundant because it recycled a decent amount of footage from the previous featurette. The best part was that Mark Rosenthal talked a lot about the story and why he made the choices he did in regards to Jewel of the Nile being a sequel. For him the heart of the story is what happens when the romance goes out of the relationship? Where do independent characters like this go? Aside from being somewhat pedestrian, this featurette is worth a look.
Six deleted scenes come on this disc. They have titles like "Jack, I Wish We Would Have Gone to Greece" and "A Toast to Joan Wilder." For fans of the scene where Turner and Douglas are hanging by a rope, they should certainly check out this "Greece" sequence. These scenes don't look they've been cleaned up, but they are worth checking out as they appear like they were cut for time purposes.
Widescreen - 2.35:1 Aspect Ratio. Call it being nostalgic, call it yearning for times past but I really like the way movies from the mid 1980s look. While Lewis Teague didn't really go out of his way to make this a visually stunning film, the locale of where Jewel of the Nile takes place essentially lends itself to capturing sweeping vistas simply because they are there. The DVD transfer also seems to have contained the look of this film, so while things still had muted-like tones, it does appear that the compression settings helped things a bit in the transfer.
Dolby Digital. English 4.0 Surround. French Stereo. Spanish Mono. Close Captioned. Subtitled in English and Spanish. The audio was certainly decent. Sadly, it's been so hot lately that I've had to turn my DVDs up almost full blast because I've had a fan running as I screen the films. Therefore it was hard to really gauge how good or bad the audio was. Still, I heard everything fine and the soundtrack seems to have caught everything that needed to be caught.
Riffing on the Romancing the Stone cover, this one uses a dark, sandy brown and has Douglas, Turner and DeVito swinging along on a rope. Well, you have to give them credit for trying to capture the feeling of the first film. The back cover features a quote from Roger Ebert, a description of the movie, a Special Features listing and some technical specs. Inside this cover is a booklet on the film's production which also brings back memories of it's release.
I remember not seeing this movie when I was younger because I didn't like Jewel of the Nile as a title. It didn't make sense to me that you could follow up a film like Romancing the Stone with a movie that didn't have a similar title. Then, without realizing I was doing it, I watched the one scene in this movie that gives everything away about the "jewel." This really affected how I watched this film now because I knew what the switch was. Perhaps had I not done that, I think that my review of Jewel of the Nile as a film would have maybe been much more favorable.
The Jewel of the Nile was released August 1, 1985.