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The Longest Week (Blu-ray Review)

Longest-WeekThe Longest Week was released by 20th Century Fox back on January 6th, earlier this year.  This fifteen million dollar budgeted film saw a smaller, limited theatrical release back on September 5th of 2014.  Written and directed by Peter Ganz from a story by Ganz and Juan Iglesias it stars Jason Bateman, Olivia Wilde, Billy Crudup, Tony Roberts and Jenny Slate.  The film was released to some of the worst reviews of last year, giving it an unfavorable 11% critic score and 24% audience score on the aggregate site Rotten Tomatoes.  I’m sure Fox is hoping this finds a little bit more life and enjoyment from the home video crowd as it hits the purchase and rental market.

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Film 

The longest week of Conrad Valmont’s aimless and affluent life starts when he’s suddenly cut off from his allowance following his wealthy parents’ messy divorce.  Suddenly broke and evicted, Conrad is forced to movie in with his friend Dylan. But innocent flirtation leads to fateful infatuation and Conrad soon finds himself trying to seduce Dylan’s gorgeous girlfriend Beatrice.  As the sparks fly, both men vie for Beatrice’s attention.

Peter Ganz’s The Longest Week features a great cast that has to wander through the hollows of a copycat film script that just doesn’t have any of the life, character or charm of anything its wanting to be like.  Within in two seconds, you can already tell this movie wants to be a Woody Allen film as done by Wes Anderson.  I mean, it even has Tony Roberts in it.  Except, unlike those two, this film has nothing of its own to really tell.  All of its people, quips, style and technique are complete borrowed from those masterful auteurs.  Its looks nice, but I’d rather pop in one of those filmmakers films instead of this.

I’m not saying I’m against the film because its a knock off, it just really had nothing else to do.  And stripped of its influences, I find it rather an empty and unenjoyable experience.  I don’t know why, but Olivia Wilde is always in bad or mediocre movies.  I think she has some talent and presence, but man, girl can’t catch a break.  Also good to see Jenny Slate get more work, but if you want to see her, check out last year’s Obvious Child.  This is a film that you might think you’re going to enjoy from the outset, but you’ll be sadly disappointed as it keeps going.

Longest Week 4

Video 

Encoding: MPEG-4 AVC

Resolution: 1080p

Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1

Clarity/Detail:  This transfer is a sharp and crisp image with some medium level detail. Textures are stronger in close ups, but every other shot they’re a little smooth and not very present.  Its an image that sort of has its color a little drained out of it, so its not too striking or vivid either.

Black Levels:  Blacks are rich, and do hide plenty of detail, especially on coats and nighttime sequences.

Color Reproduction:  Colors are paler in appearance.  Nothing is ever too distracting, and some sequences are overly blue or green filtered at times.

Flesh Tones:  Flesh tones also prove to be a little colder.  Detail is high in closeups as you can make out more stubble, freckles, wrinkles and scarring.

Noise/Artifacts:  Nothing.

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Audio 

Audio Format(s): English 5.1 DTS-HD MA

Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish

Dynamics: This does a decent job for what its given.  Honestly this film could have been released with a 2.0 track an done just fine if not better.  Sound effects sound nice and there’s a good balance of those with score and dialogue.

Low Frequency Extension:  A car crash is the highlight, mostly just a little assistance to the jazz scoring.

Surround Sound Presentation:  Not much here, just some light ambiance from the rears.  Not a whole lot of action going on up front either as this is a dialogue driven film.

Dialogue Reproduction:  Clear, center focused and clean.

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Extras 

The Longest Week comes with a Digital Copy of the film.

The Making Of The Longest Week (HD, 16:14) – Your basic little EPK interview driven story of making the film from the ground up (Making a short before making the film).  Oddly, the descriptive text for each speaker on screen is runs out of the TV Safe area.

Theatrical Trailer (HD, 2:03)

Longest Week 2

Summary 

The Longest Week wants to be a Woody Allen and Wes Anderson film.  It can look and sound like one all it wants, but it lacks anything remotely engaging as those directors can  bring to the table in even their weaker efforts.  It has a good cast, but that’s not enough at all.  Fox’s presentation is solid, and the extras are light but enough.  I mean, to me the highest I could recommend is a rental, if not wait til its eventually a watch on your streaming service without any extra charge at your own leisure.

Longest-Week-Blu-ray

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Writer/Reviewer, lifelong obsessive film nerd. As eager to educate in the world of film as I am to learn. An avid lover of horror, schlock and trash, Brandon hosts the Cult Cinema Cavalcade podcast on the Creative Zombie Studios Network (www.cultcinemacavalcade.com) You can also find more essays on his blog Naptown Nerd (naptownnerd.blogspot.com).

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