Friday, March 4, 2011

Beauty & The Briefcase Blu-ray Review

Disc Size: 13.8 GB
Film Size: 13.5 GB
Film Rating: Not Rated
Region: A
The Video
Beauty & the Briefcase’ comes to Blu-ray with a 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 video presentation. I already had an idea of what to expect visually from the made for television film and what we get here is just as I imagined.

From beginning to end the presentation is clear high-def, there is no mistaking it. However, it does look like it was filmed with cheaper high-def cameras than those used for a major motion picture, think 'Grey’s Anatomy' for those who have seen it in high-definition.

Overall clarity is fantastic; detail is strong but doesn’t quite reach cinema levels of detail. Colors are warm and well produced, blacks are solid throughout. There were no artifacts to be found and I really had no issue with the presentation.

The high-def visuals didn’t always impress me, but it is obviously an upgrade from standard definition. Fans of the film will be very pleased if not impressed by the Blu-ray presentation. I think it is very solid looking, just don’t expect a mind blowing transfer from this television film. 8/10

The Audio
An English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track is the lossless track and only audio track included. Optional subtitles include English SDH and Spanish.

I want to say thank you to Image Entertainment for included a high-def audio track for the film, as I am sure other studios would likely include a basic Dolby Digital track in place if they gave it a Blu-ray release to begin with. It may not make a massive difference on how impressive the track is, but it certainly should be a requirement inclusion for a Blu-ray release.

I wasn’t expecting much from the audio mix; being a chick flick to begin with they rarely tend to be surround sound experiences. Remember that it is also made for television and you may set your expectations accordingly.

The mix is quite good, featuring excellent clarity in dialogue and the light music thrown into the mix. There is surround use, but not so much that it impressed. Overall the mix gets the job done nicely, I really didn’t expect anymore than what is included so I am very pleased and thankful. 7/10

The Extra

Trailer (1:07) (SD)
A trailer for the film is included in standard-definition.

Wow, only a trailer…really? I know this is a made for TV film, but behind-the-scenes footage and interviews are something I am sure were recorded. Oh well. 1/10

The Movie
Beauty & the Briefcase’ is an ABC Family Original Movie; I was surprised to see the film announced for Blu-ray release, but the more variety of content on the format the better. Surprisingly the home video release has taken quite some time to debut.

The film starts former Disney queen Hilary Duff who has dwindled in fame but has kept a steady and healthy career in Hollywood; thankfully she hasn’t gone the way of Lindsay Lohan. She is most famous for her role on the Disney Channel show Lizzie McGuire.From the start, ‘Beauty & the Briefcase’ has that made for TV feel (which it is), but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The film seems to have fairly strong production values and a cast of familiar but far from A-list faces throughout.

The film is definitely a chick flick and male audiences may find the lead character unlikable due to the storyline. The film is basically about a journalist who hopes to land an article in Cosmopolitan magazine by dating businessmen and telling about it, she basically messes with a bunch of men and their hearts.

The story tries to be somewhat unique but ends up being extremely predictable. That being said, I have seen far worse attempts of a chick flick. Ultimately I think fans of Hilary Duff will find great entertainment from the film as she does a solid job in the role, but as a whole it is really mediocre, even when taking into consideration that it is made for television. 6/10

The Blu-news Summary
‘Beauty & the Briefcase’ is a light chick flick which delivers somewhat, but fails to be unique or deliver anything new. The Blu-ray release is great, with a strong visual presentation and a fitting audio mix. The extra is disappointing however. Overall this Blu-ray release is ‘Recommended’ to fans of the film & ‘Worth A Look’ for fans of Hilary Duff.

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