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A view from the Blu (-ray) on DVDBeaver by Leonard Norwitz


A Little Background     Openers     


    Modus Operandi     The Scorecard:     

Emotive Connection      Audio     Operations    Extras     The Movie     Equipment





27 Dresses [Blu-ray]

(Anne Fletcher, 2008)







Review by Leonard Norwitz


20th Century Fox Pictures Home Entertainment


Disc: Region: A

Runtime: 111

Chapters: 24`

Size: 50 GB

Case: Standard Blu-ray case: 1 disc

Release date: April 29th, 2008



Aspect ratio: 2.40:1

Resolution: 1080p

Video codec: AVC @ 34 MBPS



English 5.1 DTS Master Lossless, French & Spanish Dolby Surround



English, Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin, Korean, none



• The Wedding Party (14.5 min.)

• You'll Never Wear That Again (7 min.)

• Jane's World (4.5 min.)

• The Running of the Brides (5 min.)

• Deleted Scenes




The Film:

In one of the industry’s fastest turnovers from theatrical release (January 8) to Blu-ray (April 29), Fox demonstrates that it doesn’t take a blockbuster special effects film to qualify for high definition release – which proves, not so much the worthiness of the movie in question, but that Blu-ray is the go-to format of the day. Katherine Heigl (former New Mexican alien and surgical intern) stars in this lightweight bit of romantic comedy about Jane – always a bridesmaid, never a bride. Jane seems to have found her niche as wedding coordinator to all her friends. Her caretaking role also extends to the workplace, where she plays nursemaid to just about everybody, including Jane's unsignificant other [sic] – her all-too perfect boss, George (Edward Burns), When Jane's younger sister, Tess (Malin Akerman), drops into town for what was expected to be a one or two week visit, she soon catches sight of said hunk, and it falls on poor Jane to introduce them: Boss George (describing Jane's job at work): "She's my right hand." Sis: "Lucky her." It's that kind of script a times.



Meanwhile, Jane meets Kevin, the ultimate wedding cynic (James Marsden, channeling Brad Pitt – if one can use that word about the still living.) Kevin compares believing in marriage in general and weddings in particular to believing in Santa Claus. Unbeknownst to Jane, Kevin is actually an ace writer, covering weddings for the New York Journal and goes after Jane in much the same way as Jean Arthur follows Gary Cooper in Mr. Deeds Goes to Town – with not dissimilar results. The potential for romance and comedy would be obvious to the barely conscious, and for the most part, the story, situations and performance goes about its merry and often silly way.

Ms Heigl proves herself quite capable in the romantic comedy genre, though I can't say I felt she was all that comfortable in heels and bridesmaid's dresses – but, of course, that must have been half the point. She has an engaging way with wordless replies to situations. The scripted sugar is tempered by the inimitable Judy Greer as the best friend who delivers a much needed face slap in the face – something the script could have benefited from.

27 Dresses is harmless enough and moves along predictably and pleasantly until the third act when writer Aline Brosh McKenna finds it necessary to provide a psychosocial explanation for Jane's caring for others while placing herself at the back of a very long bus: Losing what little edge the film had until then (and, quite frankly, I didn't believe any of Tess's instant conversion to humanity), predictability quickly devolves into formulaic pabulum, as everyone's true character is revealed and a fairy tale lives happily ever after.



Image : 8 (7.5~8.5/9)
The score of 8 indicates a relative level of excellence compared to other Blu-ray DVDs on a ten point scale. The score in parentheses represents: first, a value for the image in absolute terms; and, second, how that image compares to what I believe is the current best we can expect in the theatre.



The saturated (but not very) image is effectively (but not very) presented in high definition – though one wonders why the bother. Except for a few breathtaking vistas of Manhattan , neither the movie nor the photography hardly calls for it. The reason is evident in my opening remarks: High Definition is becoming the rule, rather than the exception.













Audio & Music:

Audio & Music : 6/8
Given the possibilities of a 5.1 DTS Master Lossless audio mix, the dialogue is duller and foggier than is generally the case in less exotic presentations. On the other hand, things really come alive when the songs take center stage, even as only part of the soundtrack.


Operations : 6
Here, as in many a Blu-ray before it, I keep wondering if I'm doing something wrong or not doing something right when I can't easily get to a new special feature without returning first to the main feature.



Extras : 6
Instead of a commentary, there are three making-of featurettes from 4-15 minutes long. I liked You'll Never Wear That Again where dress designer Catherine Marie Thomas talks about the assignment of a lifetime. There is also one 5-minute short titled The Running of the Brides about the annual one-day wedding gown sell-off at Filene's Basement in Manhattan where we meet brides-to-be waiting in line for the mad rush. Apple: eat our heart out!



Bottom line:

Recommendation : 6
A familiar plot, recollecting any number of romantic comedy plots and weddings (which could be seen as much the same thing), 27 Dresses makes for a rentable, clean-cut date movie or, if you see it that way: your basic chic flic.

Leonard Norwitz
April 20th, 2008









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