|S E A R C H D V D B e a v e r|
(John G. Avildsen, 1981)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Columbia Pictures Corporation
Region: FREE (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: Single-layered
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: November 1st, 2016
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio English 2.0
Description: No one knows what evil lurks with the folks next door in this black comedy. Earl Keese (John Belushi) is a middle-aged suburbanite whose life is dull and uneventful, and that's just the way he likes it, though his wife, Enid (Kathryn Walker), isn't quite so happy. Earl soon learns that a new couple has just moved into the house next door, loudly leisure-suited Vic (Dan Aykroyd) and sexy Ramona (Cathy Moriarty). Earl is at once thrilled and terrified when Ramona unexpectedly attempts to seduce him, and he is quite puzzled when Vic and Ramona stop by for dinner the following evening and Ramona angrily accuses Earl of trying to take advantage of her. After an argument, Vic offers to make peace by buying dinner from a take-out restaurant. When Earl spies Vic cooking the meal in his kitchen a few minutes later, he realizes that his new neighbors are playing some sort of game with him, though he's not sure what or why. Neighbors marked the third and final screen pairing of Saturday Night Live stars John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd; Belushi died of a drug overdose three months after the film's release.
Earl Keese (John Belushi, Animal House) is a slightly overweight, fairly average guy who is approaching middle age. He leads a reasonably comfortable life with his family in their suburban home. . . until the house next door is bought by a truly odd couple, Vic (Dan Aykroyd, Ghostbusters) and Ramona (Cathy Moriarty, Raging Bull), who quickly proceed to drive Earl crazy. Vic's lunatic behavior has Earl running in circles while Ramona's coarse seductiveness leaves him panting. In short, Earl's tranquil life is suddenly turned upside down. If it's laughs you want, these are the neighbors to look in on. John G. Avildsen (The Karate Kid, 1984, For Keeps?) directs a dream comedy cast (including SNL regular Tim Kazurinsky) from a screenplay by the one and only Larry Gelbart (Tootsie, The Wrong Box).
Thomas Berger's darkly funny novel ''Neighbors'' certainly wasn't
tailor-made for John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd, but casting them in the
film version was a good idea. Mr. Belushi makes a stolid and suspicious
Earl Keese, a man whose life becomes a shambles when the wrong people
move next door. And Mr. Aykroyd is a suitably menacing choice for Vic
(called Harry in the novel), the brassy new neighbor who, for no reason
that is ever explained, does everything in his power to drive Earl wild.
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
Sony's Blu-ray is advertised as "...manufactured on demand using BD-R recordable media." It is. The disc has a purple backing and for me, was only good to play, three times. I know I am quite alone, but Neighbors is one of those 'Holy Grail' comedies that I've always wanted to re-watch after seeing a very wayward, indecipherable effort 35-years ago. I loved Belushi's straightest performance as Earle, Aykroyd's compulsive liar Vic, Moriarty's oversexed, flirtatious, character Ramona, the humming hydro-lines, the strange car... actually the entire eccentric stream of the film fascinated me when I was young. This single-layered Blu-ray has a decent 1080P image - sharper than SD, some depth etc. - but the product itself is a dud. In fact I couldn't even run my software to get a bitrate on the disc's technical numbers as it was already kaput. This Blu-ray image is not the failing of this purchase - the weak media is.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
We get a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel track sounding clean if unremarkable. There are some effects in the film - notably the hum of the hydro-wires and the variation on the Twilight Zone theme. You will also hear brief music of The Doors ' Hello, I Love You and the The Bee Gees Stayin' Alive. The score is by Bill Conti (The Right Stuff, Rocky, Harry and Tonto, For Your Eyes Only) and is reasonably supported. There are optional English subtitles on theregion FREE disc playable on Blu-ray machines worldwide.
Nothing - not even a menu.
September 30th, 2017