New on DVD and Blu-ray disc: October 13, 2009

10/18/2009 Posted by Admin

“The Proposal” DVD, Blu-ray
Just say, “I don’t.” This forced romantic comedy occasionally works--especially during its first half--but eventually it falls apart during its inept second half. Sandra Bullock is mean Margaret, a book editor with a lacky in Andrew (Ryan Renolds) who finds out that the career she loves might come to a halt if she’s deported back to her homeland of Canada. To save herself, she strikes a deal with Andrew, who is working his own angles and agrees to marry her for a price to keep her in the country. What are the odds that they fall for each other in the process? It’s that predictability (not to mention the movie’s increasingly stupid dialogue and situations) that fells the film, which, given the genuine chemistry Bullock and Reynolds do possess, could have saved itself had it had a better script. Rated PG-13. Grade: C+

“Looney Tunes: Spotlight Collection, Vol. 7”
Here is a fine reason why some of us champion Chuck Jones as one of the kings of animation. He may never have had a theme park, but Jones had something arguably just as formidable--an edge, an irreverent wit, an anything-goes imagination, and especially his enduring, endearing cast of characters--Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig and Daffy Duck chief among them. In the seventh volume of “Spotlight Collection,” there is a caveat--if you already own the six editions of the superior “Golden Collection,” only two shorts will be new to you here. Everything else has been recycled. Worse? There are no extras. Still, if you don’t own any of the other collections, this affordable set of 26 shorts is well worth a look, even if Warner disappoints by not going the distance. Grade: B

South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut” Blu-ray
A film so laced with obscenities, raunch and violence, it could single handedly sink the Bible Belt. But the film, just like the popular Comedy Central cartoon on which it’s based, also has its moments of brilliance, particularly in its parody of Broadway show tunes, which the film mimics throughout with hilarious panache. Wit fuel’s “Uncut’s” script, and that’s what saves it from being just another crude movie. Creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone actually have something to say--particularly to those desperate to censor artists--and they say it loudly with a raised middle finger. Why “Uncut” didn’t get slapped with an NC-17 rating is beyond me, but for those wondering what really can come out of the mouths of babes, well, look no further. Rated R. Grade: B+

“How the Grinch Stole Christmas” Blu-ray
About as warm and as lyrical as a cold lump of Who Hash. Ron Howard’s $120 million bore cheapens Seuss’ tale and turns it into a garish spectacle of back-lot special effects crudely stapled to Jim Carrey’s unceasingly unfunny, over-the-top mugging as the Grinch. Desperate to stretch Seuss’ story into a full-length feature film, what we’re left with is a movie that departs from the text and the ideas that inspired it. In Howard’s world, the Whos aren’t the gentle people Seuss imagined but a piggish band of louts driven by greed and commercialism who are no better than the Grinch. Cindy Lou Who (Taylor Momsen) is the exception, but since the film turns only to her to provide the balance of good vs. evil (in the book, it was the townspeople vs. the Grinch), that balance is shot. Momsen is cute, but Carrey’s nonstop shenanigans overwhelm her. His performance isn’t acting, per se, but pandering reduced to a series of sight gags, some of which are so raunchy, adults might find themselves wondering what happened to the Grinch they grew up with. Rated PG. Grade: D+

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