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|Home: BigScreen Journal - Blu-ray Review: Run, Fatboy, Run|
Run Fatboy Run
Warner Home Video
List Price: $35.99 (Check Price at Amazon.com)
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| Video Format:||35mm||1080p VC-1|
(incorrectly labeled on packaging as Dolby Digital 7.1)
Movie: BD-50 (x1) BD-MV
Out of shape sad sack Dennis Doyle tries to redeem himself and win the respect of his ex-fiance (whom he left at the altar years earlier) and their son by entering the same marathon that her new very fit boyfriend is participating in. Can he overcome rashes, a nasty blister, and his deficiencies, or will he disappoint everyone in his bid to finish the race?
I was happy with the video quality of this title. It didn't have a video look to it, and I didn't notice any artifacts while watching it.
The lossless DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 soundtrack is something I would like to see more studios use! Even though this is a comedy that wouldn't necessarily call for a rich and enveloping soundfield, I found the crowd scenes to be very immersive. Since it is a comedy, where the lines need to be understood to be funny, it's good that the dialogue was always easy to understand as well.
Kudos to Warner Bros. for equipping this title with a great soundtrack when other studios might have given it less than their best. What's confusing is that their more recently-released Blu-ray of Get Smart was equipped with a less than impressive Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack that has received quite a few negative and lackluster reviews.
I like to see the theatrical trailer included with movies, so I was happy to see, not one, but two, trailers included here! The domestic and international trailers are presented in HD and are interesting to compare and lends some insight into what is deemed "acceptable" in the United States vs. the rest of the world. Given what's shown on network TV these days, it seems almost laughable that the international trailer wouldn't be appropriate for U.S. audiences.
In addition to the trailers, we have a commentary with stars Simon Pegg and Thandie Newton, as well as Simon's mom and director David Schwimmer, some deleted scenes and outtakes, and a sequence that shows a practical joke that Newton played on Pegg during an interview. All except the latter item are presented in HD with 1.5Mbps DTS sound.
This package features something else that is gaining traction among Blu-ray releases, which is a digital copy of the movie. At least, that's what is advertised on the package. What was received was a full copy of the movie on a dual-layer DVD. It contained both the widescreen and full-screen (1.33:1) versions of the movie, complete with extras. From what I can tell from other reviews, this appears to have been an early production mistake (possibly only affecting review copies) and what should have been included (according to the packaging) is a Data DVD containing a digital copy that needs to be unlocked.
One of the challenges of the Blu-ray format is that its discs cannot be played on DVD players that people have throughout their homes, portable units, and vehicles. A third data DVD in this package contains a digital copy of the movie in both Windows Media and iTunes formats, presumably for downloading to your PC, iPod/iPhone, and Zune portable devices. I inserted the disc into a Windows XP laptop and a welcome screen came up and offered to install either format and then asked for the access code provided in the printed materials. I didn't install the movie to see if it worked, as I have no desire to watch movies on a tiny iPod screen, or even my PC.
Personally, given the DRM aspects and compatibility issues of digital copies, I'd prefer if the studios copied Disney's approach with Sleeping Beauty and just included the DVD version of the movie in the Blu-ray package.
This movie is funnier than I was expecting it to be, making it the second such surprise in as many weeks! (Maybe I need to be a little less harsh when pre-judging movies??) If you absolutely love the movie, it's worth having around for multiple viewings. Being a comedy, it's also a little more suitable to be loaded onto a portable device for rewatching your favorite scenes or revisiting it during a long commute or waiting in line, etc.
If you're not sure if you're going to love the movie, a rental is still recommended, as this is a movie well worth watching.
Don't just take our word for it, check out these resources for more reviews of the movie and of the disc.
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