The Heat (Blu-Ray Review)

The-Heat2013’s highest grossing live action comedy hits Blu-ray in a release loaded with extra humor.  Paul Feig follows up his smashing success Bridesmaids with another female driven comedy, this time taking on the buddy cop genre.  Up until the recent opening weekend of Gravity, The Heat was Sandra Bullock’s highest grossing weekend of all time.  The opening weekend was quite the eye opener, improving upon Bridesmaids opening weekend significantly.  But, then again, adding the undeniable star power of Sandra Bullock and rising stock of Melissa McCarthy can give something its extra bump.  The film deemed quite popular among moviegoers, finishing as the summer’s 8th highest grosser and just until this past weekend, top 10 for the year.   Say what you will about the film’s quality, it proved big enough a success that we’ll be seeing The Heat 2: Your Sister Is A NARC Cop sometime in the next few years.

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The Heat gives us the age old “buddy cop” tale, this time taking two female officers of the law, from different departments and different cities working on a case to find a vicious drug dealer who goes by the name “Larkin”.  FBI Special Agent Ashburn is at the top of her field, but an annoyance to her colleagues and lacking much of a personality.  She follows her trail to Boston, hoping to impress her outgoing boss into succeeding him.  Detective Mullins is a more hardened, carefree cop from Boston who is proud of her work in similar but different ways from Ashburn.  The two get paired up to solve the case and must learn to work with each other and learn more about each other…yea, you’ve heard this.

Like I said above, this isn’t a novel concept.  I guess the “interesting spin” on this is that this buddy cop movie has two females as its leads.  This sadly shouldn’t be something groundbreaking but I can’t seem to come up any other examples of this spin.  The film goes through many of the paint by numbers beats that these things do, so the importance needs to be placed with how well its done and the strength of the leads.  There is a good chemistry with Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy that works quite well and is forced to carry a lot of this movie.  The material they are given is pretty generic and the two do their best to elevate it.  Paul Feig however may have too much of a liking to McCarthy as he lets some of her moments drag a little too long or become too predictably raunchy its kind of a yawn.

I really liked a lot of the casting in the smaller parts of the film as it featured many actors who you don’t see a whole hell of a lot In comedies from this sort of collective.  A lot of the time you see the same people in the same expected roles, here it feels a little fresh and unpredictable with such people as Bill Burr, Taran Killam, Jane Curtin, Demian Bichir and Tom Wilson.  And throwing it way off is Marlon Wayans as a total straight man love interest.  I must give it kudos in this field.  Also, the film deserves a pat on the back for its restraint in not having some big celebrity cameo distracting and taking away from the film at hand.  I was genuinely surprised there zero big noteworthy cameos in this film.

The Heat suffers from the same problem a lot of these comedies tend to have from the Apatow/Feig /Rogen (you know the people I’m talking about) collective.  They’re so damn long.  The Heat runs very near 2 hours and I couldn’t help but think this could have been a really good film had it been put at a more tight and focused 90-100 minutes.  This film is littered with many superfluous scenes and extra dialogue that does nothing for the story or character development.  It’s just throwing joke darts and the board.  I get with the 2 hour time limit that you get more jokes and a little looser play, but it they aren’t hitting constantly it gets a little boring.  And with the generic plot and character points in the film, the thing starts to drag.  The leads can only do so much, but this film needed a bit more of a leash.

I kind of dreaded watching this movie, having not seen it this summer and most of those in my circle of critics not really warm on it.  Plus I was sick of seeing the damn trailer for months on end attached to, it seemed like, every movie I saw since last December.  But, I was slightly surprised with the film.  There was enough enjoyment here that I didn’t hate watching the film.  I liked it much more than I expected to, and really thought the two leads and supporting players helped enhance the film with their abilities to elevate the generic mold of the story.  Maybe I’m on a Sandra Bullock high from Gravity, but I’ve been enjoying her a bit lately.  My low expectations and convenience of being able to watch this from the comfort of my own home might have been enough to have me land on the positive side of the mediocre fence as opposed to those critics who had to get to a theater and see the film this past summer.  It’s an ok movie, that I’m sure some without such a critical eye will enjoy quite a bit more than I have.

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The 1080p MPEG-4 AVC encoding on The Heat provides a quite lovely picture.  Sandra Bullock looks terrific in the 2:40.1 framing.  The film has a vivid appearance, but manages to be restrained and not abusive with it.  The level of detail proves terrific.  Skin tones appear consistent and natural.  I do have a short 1.5 second nit pick on a scene where for that tiny window there appears to be some minor pixilation appearing on Melissa McCarthy’s neck in a darkly lit setting.  The black levels are quite good without producing and crushing issues.  This disc has a really great looking picture (as most modern hit movies that studios care about do) and does more than it really needs to.

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The Heat’s DTS-HD MA 5.1 track brings…the heat (yuck yuck yuck).  Really though, this track is quite stellar.  It’s a nice loud track that features some good thumping from your surround system.  One of the highlights is the night club scene, giving you a full feel for the environment and a real sense of space.  The music provided in the film gives a real kick and boost when it comes on.  The dialogue is nice and clear.  Most of it is relegated to center channel and doesn’t have an incredibly noticeable amount of wiggle room, but it’s quite effective.  The sound effects in the film are nice, crisp and have a rich flavor on the track.

Additional Audio Tracks:  English Descriptive Audio 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1, French Dolby Digital 5.1, Portuguese Dolby Digital 5.1, Czech Dolby Digital 5.1, Hungarian Dolby Digital 5.1, Polish Dolby Digital 5.1, Turkish Dolby Digital 5.1, India Dolby Digital 5.1

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If you are a fan of outtakes and commentary, this is the disc for you.  To say this thing is LOADED is an understatement.  Most everything here has an intro from director Paul Feig.  The Heat also comes with DVD and Ultraviolet copies of the film.

The Commentary Track In Which The Director Of The Heat Talks Endlessly About The Heat – Appears for the unrated version of the film only.  Paul Feig humors and jokes as he goes through the shooting of the film.

The Commentary Track In Which Melissa McCarthy And Other Great People From The Heat Talk About The Heat – For the theatrical cut.  Also features Paul Feig, Katie Dippold, Mike McDonald, Adam Ray and Jesse Henderson.  This is a fowdy commentary with a lot of name calling and constant group talking

The Commentary Track In Which Some Of The Mullins Family Discusses The Heat – For the theatrical cut of the film.  Paul Feig along with the actors playing the Mullins characters go over the film in character.

Attend The June 23, 2013 Premiere Of The Heat At The Ziegfeld Theater In The Comfort Of Your Own Home – This is just the film with audience noise.  Nothing to see here, skip it.

The Original Lineup From Mystery Science Theater 3000 Comments On The Heat – This pretty much equals to an episode of MST3K.  It works, but these are better reserved for poor productions rather than competent ones.  Still fun, and as a fan of MST3K its neat to have.

Welcome To The Bonus Features! (HD, :27) – Director Paul Feig welcomes you to the bonus materials in which you are about to partake.

Mullins Family Fun (HD, 9:20) – Outtakes and extended improvs from scenes featuring the Mullins family

Acting Master Class (HD, 8:28) – Outtakes and extended improvs from the bar scene where Melissa McCarthy and Sandra Bullock have tape on their faces holding their noses up.

Let’s Get Physical (HD, 6:31) – Outtakes and bloopers from scenes involving physical comedy and beatings

Police Brutality (HD, 6:43) – Outtakes and extended improvs featuring Melissa McCarthy berating people

Von Bloopers (HD, 15:41) – Almost 16 minutes of people screwing up their lines, missing marks and losing their composure

Supporting Cast Cavalcade (HD, 7:44) – Alternate dialogue from some of the bit players in the film

Over And Out (HD, :36) – Paul Feig thanks you for watching these outtakes

All The Stuff We Had To Take Out But Still Think Is Funny – As if you thought you’d seen it all, here’s more unused footage!

   Deleted Scenes

  • “Advice” (HD, :35)
  • “Jail Talk” (HD, :45)
  • “Pimp Walk” (HD, 1:24)
  • “Dogs & Cats” (HD, :35)
  • “It’s A Code” (HD, 1:03)
  • “Battle Of The Minds” (HD, 1:29)
  • “Make Some Pants” (HD, 1:17)
  • “Darts” (HD, :52)
  • “Hospital Visit” (HD, :47)
  • “Nip In The Bud” (HD :49)
  • “Cur-tan” (HD, :38)

   Extended Scenes

  • “Let’s Go” (HD, 1:10)
  • “Hot/Cold” (HD, 1:15)
  • “Drop A Deuce” (HD, 2:25)
  • “Target” (HD, :31)
  • “Two Truths And A Lie” (HD, 1:34)
  • “Strong Stream” (HD, 1:02)
  • “Bad Minten” (HD, :36)
  • “Scrotum” (HD, :56)
  • “Clarice Starling” (HD, 1:51)
  • “Bottom Of The Bowl” (HD, 2:01)
  • “Wink” (HD, :27)
  • “Toast” (HD, 1:47)

   Alternate Scenes

  • “Squeeze out” (HD, :31)
  • “You’re Leaving” (HD, :48)
  • “In A Weird Place” (HD, 1:00)
  • “e.e. cummings” (HD, 1:20)

How The Heat Was Made (HD, 19:44) – A behind the scenes look, featuring on set footage and interviews with cast and crew.

Sneak Peek – The Blu-ray Experience demo reel and trailers for The Internship and The Way Way Back

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Fox delivers a terrific presentation of the year’s #1 comedy to Blu-ray.  I found the film itself to be okay, but I can see general audiences enjoying it quite a bit.  It’s a generic, tired tale with fresh modern comedy and gender reversal (sad that this is the first I can think of) thrown in.  You could do a lot worse than this one.  As a theatrical going experience I may have been a bit harsher on the film, but this one really works as that OnDemand, Streaming, rental, got it as a gift type movie.  The film’s stars and supporting players are able to elevate the film from being a possible bore.  The film is too long, and it does suffer from that.  The disc is loaded with bonus features, and fans of the film will be finding themselves lost in them for hours.  This is a stacked release and fans will get plenty of use from this disc that’s for sure.



Brandon is the host, producer, writer and editor of The Brandon Peters Show (thebrandonpetersshow.com) on the Creative Zombie Studios Network. At Why So Blu he is a Writer/Reviewer. Brandon is a 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. You can also find older essays on his blog Naptown Nerd (naptownnerd.blogspot.com).

1 Response to “The Heat (Blu-Ray Review)”

  1. Aaron Neuwirth

    Finally, another sane person that didn’t like this movie overall.