Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Did You Hear About The Morgans? Blu-ray Review

Disc Size: 37.9 GB
Film Size: 26.7 GB
Film Rating: PG-13
Region: ABCThe Video

Did You Hear about the Morgans?’ comes to Blu-ray 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 video presentation. Being a romantic comedy I expected a colorful and vibrant experience with the detail levels of a typical new release. Unfortunately ‘Did You Hear about the Morgans?’ looks rather dull on Blu-ray, while still an improvement from DVD.

The biggest disappointment in this high-def presentation is the underwhelming black levels which make the film look very flat. Detail is also quite unspectacular, most scenes featuring decent clarity but soft levels of detail.

Certain scenes can look quite strong in high-definition, especially towards the end. It definitely varies from scene to scene on how colorful and clear a scene looks and that is definitely distracting. The Blu-ray encode did not appear to have any serious technical issues to speak of, which is a good thing.

Overall I think viewers will still find much to like about the presentation as many scenes do look quite good, but for a new release I definitely expected better in every aspect. Everything is certainly decent though and is far from the worst looking transfers on Blu-ray. 7/10.
The Audio

Both English and French 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio tracks are included for this release. A 5.1 Dolby Digital Audio Description track is also included. Subtitle options include English, English SDH and French. English subtitles are also included for the optional audio commentary.

The audio track is actually quite surprising, featuring a satisfying surround mix that will certainly please viewers. Dialogue is presented front and center, clear as expected. The mix adds some subtle surround effects to create environment, whether it be the busy New York City streets or wide open Wyoming prairie.

The track is quite active considering the elements in the film and I don’t think it could have sounded much better than it does now. The mix is about as active as one could expect from the film and there is no way one could be disappointed by the lossless audio mix included. I actually expected it to be far less impressive than it is. For this romantic comedy, it doesn’t get much better than this. 7.5/10.
The Extras

MovieIQ
Connect to real-time information on the cast, music, trivia and more while watching the movie. You must have a BD-Live connected Blu-ray player to use MovieIQ.

Audio Commentary
With Director Marc Lawrence and Stars Hugh Grant and Sarah Jessica Parker.

Location, Location, Location! (18:14) (HD)
A feature all about the locations in the film and includes a great amount of behind-the-scenes footage and interviews throughout.

Cowboys and Cosmopolitans (8:05) (HD)
A behind-the-scenes look of production of the film and making a story that takes place in two of the most different places from each other.

Park Avenue Meets the Prairie (5:03) (HD)
This is a feature all about the fashion in the film, since it’s totally like Sex and the City. Not. I guess this is an entertaining feature for those into fashion, but no article of clothing stood out in the film to really call for a feature.

A Bear of a Scene (5:22) (HD)
Go behind-the-scenes of the bear scene. This is definitely an interesting and entertaining feature worth checking out.

Deleted Scenes (4:31) (HD)
Two deleted scenes are included and are presented in high-definition.

Outtakes (6:41) (HD)
A gag reel that is actually funnier than the film itself.

International Special (13:47) (HD)
This is basically a recap of all the included footage for international audiences, just shorter in length.

Previews (HD)

BD-Live
Download the latest trailers for upcoming Sony Pictures theatrical and Blu-ray releases.

There are plenty of extras included on this release. I was actually quite impressed by the quality of the features included, we get plenty of behind-the-scenes footage included and everything is presented in high-definition.

The audio commentary was pretty good from what I heard of it and I liked all of the featurettes included. The outtakes are even quite funny, funnier than the film dare I say. Fans will definitely be satisfied, although some may wish a Digital Copy was included. 7/10.
The Movie

Did You Hear About The Morgans? No? Well for some of you, it’s best you keep it that way. ‘Did You Hear about the Morgans?’ was a theatrical bomb which quickly came and went. The film stars Sarah Jessica Parker and Hugh Grant, two actors known for romantic comedy roles in the past, and some good ones actually.

It’s been a while since I remember seeing Sarah Jessica Parker in a major film, with the last one I recall seeing was Sex and the City: The Movie. Having recently watched a couple of HBO series, including Sex and the City, I definitely formed a much higher opinion on Sarah Jessica Parker.

Unfortunately her talent does not shine in ‘Did You Hear about the Morgans?’ Hugh Grant does nothing to stand out either, which is definitely disappointing. The film features two New York City people, separated and living pretty great lives. Unfortunately that all has to end when they witness a murder and are sent into the witness relocation program.

They are shipped to Wyoming where they must live together with a couple who takes in people who are in the witness relocation program. Both being from the city, they really are in for a culture shock as everything is entirely different from what they were used to.

The movie is a romantic comedy and is really not romantic or funny to be honest. The film had some great potential but ultimately falls flat. The comedic scenes were just not funny, but you still react by thinking ‘Oh, that was supposed to be funny! Ha’ rather than being a laugh out loud film.

Sarah Jessica Parker and Hugh Grant also lack chemistry, you will also have a hard time believing that these two people were ever together. Hugh Grant has lost his charm which he brought to previous romantic comedies and Sarah Jessica Parker just can’t do comedy like she used to. Perhaps had there been a different pairing the outcome would have been at least a bit better, although they did have some weak writing to work with as well.

The movie is not complete garbage, but it definitely comes close a couple of times. The movie is certainly watchable, but it’s extremely dull in comparison to most romantic comedies. The theme of the movie is actually quite similar to The Proposal, which is also available on Blu-ray (and much better as a whole).

Overall fans of either actor may find the film a bit easier to enjoy, but there is no denying that this movie was not executed properly. The movie just feels so dull and lifeless at times that it has you checking your watch quite constantly. It’s definitely unfortunate as I was anxious to see the movie, but it’s ultimately very disappointing.

Fans of romantic comedies in general may want to give this a rental, but it’s not something I would recommend any one blind buy. If you have no interest in the film, I don’t think the movie is ultimately worth your time. ‘Did You Hear about the Morgans?’ had a lot of potential, but overall does nothing to stand out among the average romantic comedy. 4/10.
The Blu-news Summary

'Did You Hear About The Morgans?' is a dull romantic comedy with a decent video presentation and a good audio mix. Extras are actually a highlight of this release, which do impress. Overall this movie is hard to recommend, making this one 'For Fans Only.' If you are slightly interested, definitely 'Give It A Rent First.'
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