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Category:    Home > Reviews > Comedy > The Pink Panther 2 (2009/MGM Blu-ray + DVD with Digital Copy)

The Pink Panther 2 (2009/MGM Blu-ray + DVD with Digital Copy)


Picture: B/C     Sound: B/B-     Extras: B-/C-     Film: C-



Trying to revive the Pink Panther live-action franchise has not been easy.  Even during Peter Sellers reign, Alan Arkin played Inspector Clouseau in a film of that title, but after a few more sequels, Sellers became the character indelibly in everyone’s minds.  Ted Wass (of the great TV comedy Soap) played a goofy detective trying to find Clouseau when he went missing, though the truth was that Sellars had passed away, so those films were pointless and stock footage of Sellers was poorly used.  After Roberto Benigni played Clouseau’s son in yet another failed revival, MGM (now owning the United Artists franchise and replacing the U-A name with theirs) waited long enough to get Steve Martin to play Clouseau.


That film was a moderate hit and the main reason is because it was very family friendly in a way few films try to be anymore and Martin tried his best.  With that, you would think the studio would be adamant about any follow-up being a home run, but The Pink Panther 2 (2009) may have more slapstick comedy, a remarkable cast of actors and good intents, but it turns out to be as bad as Son Of The Pink Panther that you may be laughing, but because it is so bad in its own consistent way.


A new thief called The Tornado is on the loose and stealing the world’s treasures without being caught, so an assembly of the world’s best detectives (including Alfred Molina and Andy Garcia among them) are being put together to stop this and the organizers want Clouseau, but Chief Inspector Dreyfuss (John Cleese doing an amusing job in Herbert Lom’s place, but not totally so) thinks he should be the one consulted.  Of course, Clouseau eventually joins them, but the results are backfired ideas, more treasures stolen and millions of dollars in other damages.  Amusing and I give the makers credit for trying more slapstick ala Mr. Bean, but it never works out and becomes formula done with ambition.  That is still formula.


I do like Martin and he does some funny things, but the film (at 92 minutes) is just an unmemorable romp of most everything we have seen before with a few good parts lost in the usual.  Lily Tomlin shows up trying to teach Clouseau political correctness, but his political incorrectness seems tired and recycled, so those jokes don’t work either.  A PG rating does not have to equal a tired film as the last film proved, but if Martin wants to continue in the role, he needs to find a less obvious funny angel and work it as he is so good at doing.  Between other guest cast and the sets, at least the money is in the film and it is not overproduced.


The 1080p AVC @ 34.75 MBPS 1.85 X 1 digital High Definition image on the Blu-ray is not bad, though color can be a little limited, there can be motion blur and it is not the most detailed transfer we’ve seen, but it is much better than the anamorphically enhanced DVD.  The DTS-HD Master Audio (MA) 5.1 lossless mix occasionally uses it full range, but this is a joke-based film that also plays the classic Henry Mancini theme song n various ways throughout.  The Dolby Digital 5.1 mix is not bad on either disc, but falls short with this older codec and no English Dolby is on the Blu-ray.


Extras on both versions include Digital Copy for PC and PC portable devices, a trivial game, two making of featurettes and a funny gag reel.  The Blu-ray adds a bonus DVD of 27 classic Panther animated shorts that are among the best ever made.  That disc has no extras, but is a plus and though the shorts are transferred at 1.33 X 1, those with 16 X 9 HDTVs can zoom in and will discover they display very nicely with no major information lost from the top or bottom.



For more Pink Panther, try these links:


Original Martin theatrical release



Pink Panther (1964) Blu-ray



Return Of The Pink Panther DVD




-   Nicholas Sheffo


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