Wonderful World (Blu-ray Review)

Wonderful WorldAs far as Matthew Broderick films go, I haven’t found one I don’t like and Wonderful World is no different.  We’ve seen him dance around in The Producers and of course who could forget him as the adorable slacker in Ferris Beuller’s Day Off, but now we see him as a pessimistic career proof-reader and failed children’s folksinger.  It’s an interesting combination, but it works to make the character someone you want to help up out of the perpetual mud puddle of life he is floundering in.

The Film 

Ben Singer (Matthew Broderick) is a weekend dad and not a very good one according to his ex-wife.  As a failed children’s folk singer and career proof reader turned pizza delivery man, Singer is the most pessimistic person on the planet according to everyone who knows him.  Singer lives with his roommate, Ibou (Michael Kenneth Williams), who came to America from his home country of Senegal in search for a better life.  They spend their evenings debating the meaning of life and Ibou’s tales from his home country over long chess games. 

Ibou is suddenly becomes stricken ill.  His sister, Khadi (Sanaa Lathan), comes to the United States where she and Ben strike up a short-lived yet meaningful romance.  Ben also has to deal with the stress of having an ex-wife who married a seemingly successful man.  So now when he goes to get his daughter on the weekends, this is one more thing to remind him of all his shortcomings. One comical part is where his pre-teen daughter tells him that because she enjoys watching hockey, she thinks she might be a lesbian. As any normal father would do, he promptly changes the subject. At the end of the movie all the events that have taken place are enough to make Ben see that maybe life isn’t as bad as he once thought, but it is instead what you make of it.

Wonderful World


The video quality was excellent. Everything was sharp and clear. There was no apparent fuzziness or graininess that I noticed throughout the movie.  Even during the bar scene there were excellent black levels and clear shadows. There are times when you could even see the individual threading of the sweater that Ibou was wearing.  I thought that was pretty amazing.  The grain structure was constant throughout the film, and didn’t vary.  It’s possible that it could have been made a little clearer for a movie of this age, but overall, I’d say it was well done.

Wonderful World


The master audio is 5.1 DTS-HD and as expected the music and voice was clear as could be.  As in most non-action films, the rear surround speakers carry mostly ambient sounds.  There are English and Spanish subtitles available.  The worst part of the audio for me was Ibou’s Wolof accent.  He was very hard to understand especially when he would get into his speeches trying to distract Ben in their nightly chess games.  Even his sister Khadi, who still lived in Senegal, was easier to understand than Ibou speaking in this movie.  But other than that, all of the dialogue is balanced and there aren’t any parts you can barely hear mixed with parts that would bust your eardurms. 

Wonderful World

Special Features 

This Blu-ray has one of the most lack luster selections of special features that I have reviewed to date.  The scene selection was very disappointing as there were only 12 scenes to select from.  The menu system was very simple and basic compared to those of blockbuster Blu-rays.   There were the following special features.

  • As Soon As Fish Fall Out Of The Sky: 4 Minutes 30 Seconds 
    This special feature is more like an extended trailer for the movie.  It shows the relationship between Ben Singer and Ibou and how Ibou tries to change Ben’s pessimistic view of life through folk stories from his homeland.
  • Behind The Scenes: 90 Seconds
    There is not much behind the scenes to be seen in 90 seconds.  The feature is not in wide screen and it entails a few brief sentences from each of the main actors.  The feature was very disappointing and almost irrelevant.
  • Behind The Scenes Montage: 90 Seconds
    This behind the scenes feature is just as uninformative as the later.  The feature contains random film from one of the sets with the theme from the movie playing in the background.  There is no dialogue or necessary information in this feature.
  •  HDNet: A Look at Wonderful World: 4 minutes 41 seconds
    A standard HDNet promo, featuring writer/director Josh Goldin, who explains the origins of the project, and Matthew Broderick, who gives a brief plot synopsis.
  • Also from Magnolia Home Entertainment Blu-ray: Trailers for Red Cliff, District 13: Ultimatum and The Warlords.

Wonderful World

Final Thoughts 

I would recommend this movie to anyone, especially those who think that the world is just a crappy place.  It really puts things in perspective that our happiness isn’t going to just land in our laps, but we have to go out there and make it happen.  We have to stop blaming everyone around us for our misfortune and take responsibility for our own fate.  Fish may occasionally fall out of the sky, but our happiness isn’t always going to.  


 Bring home Wonderful World on Blu-ray today



Wonderful World Blu-ray Cover Art




1 Response to “Wonderful World (Blu-ray Review)”

  1. Brian White

    It definitely sounds like this one has a strong message in life. I always need those. Maybe I will give this one a watch sometime.