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Category:    Home > Reviews > Comedy > Filmmaking > Prescriptions > Sex > Drama > Flying > WWII > Relationships > Britain > Cannes Man (aka Con Man/1995/Cinema Libre Blu-ray) + Love & Other Drugs (2010/Fox Blu-ray) + Moonstruck (1987/MGM Blu-ray) + Waiting For Dublin (2007/Cinema Libre Blu-ray) + You Will Meet A Tall Dark

Cannes Man (aka Con Man/1995/Cinema Libre Blu-ray) + Love & Other Drugs (2010/Fox Blu-ray) + Moonstruck (1987/MGM Blu-ray) + Waiting For Dublin (2007/Cinema Libre Blu-ray) + You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger (2010/Sony Blu-ray)


Picture: C+/B-/B-/C+/B††† Sound: C+ (Moonstruck & Drugs: B-)†††† Extras: C- (Moonstruck: C)†††† Films: C+ (Drugs: C-)



Comedy is not easy and so many donít work, though there are many cases where features get stuck in between working and not working.The following four films show us how, three of which we have covered before.Links follow those.


Cannes Man (aka Con Man/1995)



This film has not improved much since I covered it many years ago, but at least this is in slightly better shape than the DVD and has its original title.It never picked up an audience, but is a curio that is just interesting enough to be in print.


Love & Other Drugs (2010) is a hugely disappointing adaptation of Jamie Reidyís book Hard Sell: The Evolution Of a Viagra Salesman, with the comically capable Jake Gyllenhaal as the title character, sadly wasted in a badly scripted film by the usually savvy Edward Zwick in his worst film (give or take The Siege) that is never funny, rarely amusing, barley witty and has hardly any moments worth seeing.Even worse, it also manages to waste Anne Hathaway as his eventual love interest and even supporting performances by Oliver Platt, Hank Azaria and Gabriel Macht cannot save this.


Maybe the makers were too amused by the subject matter, but oddly, no scene about Viagra is as funny here as one with Anthony Hopkins in the Woody Allen film below.This tries too hard (no pun intended) and the nudity is oddly desexualized.


Moonstruck (1987)



We finally got to look at this from the new Cher MGM DVD box set, but the actual disc was the older DVD, but at least it had extras and they are repeated here.Just not as big on this film as others.


Waiting For Dublin (2007)



I was not as big a fan of this as my fellow critic, but it has some good acting and production design, though it did not add up for me as much.Still, this is a slight improvement over the DVD and gives the film a better chance of being appreciated, yet this could have looked better considering the money on the screen.


You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger (2010) is Woody Allenís latest film and he continues to apply his New York sensibilities overseas.Another comedy with dark overtones, this one takes place in England and stars Anthony Hopkins as a man who takes up with a sexy airhead hooker (Lucy Peach as Charmaine) when his relationship with his wife (Gemma Jones) after four decades falls apart.Their daughter (the underrated Naomi Watts) is doing no better in her marriage with a failed medical student and author (Josh Brolin) who is waiting to see if his next book will get picked up.He becomes more interested in their new sexy neighbor (Freda Pinto) and she becomes interested in her temporary boss (Antonio Banderas) so everyone is in flux.


Throwing a wrench into all this is Jonesí character visiting a psychic (Pauline Collins) who predicts the future and sees things in unusual ways.The film has plenty of amusing moments and it is worth a look, Woody Allenisms and all.It is not his best work of late, but a consistent, intelligent one that offers enough amusing moments to enjoy and is the best of the five releases here.


All the discs offer 1080p 1.85 X 1 digital High Definition image transfers, but the Libre Blus underperform to more of an extent than expected, Moonstruck (with AVC @ 40 MBPS) is mixed as well with an older HD master being used and dark scenes with more problems than bright ones.Stranger is the newest film and rightly looks the best with only some minor detail issues.Color is also great and this is a nice film shoot without compromise typical of Allenís work. No less than Vilmos Zsigmond lensed this one.Drugs (with AVC @ 33 MBPS) should look as good and almost does, but the image has been degraded just slightly more on purpose in the newer style that does not work (or is as funny) as the clarity of the Allen style.


Both Libre titles only offer weak Dolby Digital 5.1 mixes, leaving the other three titles with DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) sound mixes.Stranger is actually a 3.0 mix that goes between mono and stereo, only occupying the left, center and right channels.Allen is the last filmmaker still embracing monophonic sound, which is not bad versus some of the harsh and badly mixed multi-channel hack jobs we have suffered through.There is some stereo separation here with occasional spots of music.Moonstruck has a DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 mix that is a slight upgrade over the DVD Dolby 5.1 (the opening use of Dean Martinís That Amore sounds great), but the film was a Dolby A-type analog release and shows its age overall.Is there some way to update this mix better?With all this, Drugs should at least have the best sound mix, but is barley ahead of Moonstruck in this respect with recording inconsistent throughout.


Extras are only trailers on each Blu-ray (save Drugs), though (again) Moonstruck retains its DVD extras and Drugs has Deleted Scenes, Digital Copy for PC and PC portable devices and four making of featurettes.



-†† Nicholas Sheffo


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