Working Girl (Blu-ray Review)

Working Girl Blu-ray ReviewTruth be told, I had never seen Working Girl before.  However, one look at the Blu-ray’s cover is all it took for me to get that warm and fuzzy feeling that I was about to watch something special simply because of the very young now everyday household names on it.  And after coming off an Alien binge as of late, who am I to refute covering a Sigourney Weaver film?  Ironically though, that wasn’t the main selling point to me.  The Blu-ray cover also infused a sense of nostalgia in me over a film that I practically grew up on because of my parents love for it, the Dolly Parton star vehicle 9 to 5.  So I guess you could call me Curious George, but I was determined to find out what Working Girl was really all about, hence this review.

Working Girl


I came into watching this film armed with the following quote I found on a forum board.  “One of the greatest 80s movies, with one of the most flawlessly written scripts EVER. A plot that’s designed like a Swiss watch, complex and original characters, and UNFORGETTABLE dialogue.”  I left the capitalized words as is in the quote because it showed emphasis on what I should be looking for throughout my initial viewing.  If nothing else, I was determined to see what all the buzz, hoopla and critical acclaim over 1988’s Working Girl was all about.  This was the mission I accepted.

Despite the poofy hairstyles on display for all to see in the 1980’s I was really pumped because of the following street creds this film carries with it, not to mention a mighty impressive supporting all-star cast that isn’t even shown on the front of the Blu-ray’s cover.  So if you’re okay with it, let’s talk about all of this real quick before we even go into what all goes down within the film itself.

Working Girl is billed as a romantic comedy drama film written by Kevin Wade and directed by Mike Nichols, who recently left us last year (R.I.P.).  The film bills three main stars, Sigourney Weaver, Melanie Griffith and Harrison Ford, but boasts an all-star supporting cast behind the scenes that includes the likes of Alec Baldwin, Oliver Platt, Joan Cusack, David Duchovny and even Call of Duty‘s Kevin Spacey.  With those names in evolved, it’s no wonder why this film is so highly regarded in the late 80’s, huh?

So yeah, I mentioned critical acclaim up above.  There’s plenty of that to go around here.  Let’s just focus on the 61st Academy Awards if you don’t mind.  Griffith was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress.  Not only that, but both Weaver and Cusack were also nominated for Best Supporting Actress.  And to top it all off, the film itself was nominated for Best Picture.  I don’t know how you feel about the matter at hand we’re discussing here, but that’s pretty damn impressive for a comedy where in today’s world I wonder if the judges that nominate things have a single funny bone in them, but I digress.

One of the film’s most notable scenes includes the  opening sequence following commuters on Staten Island into Manhattan.  It all culminates with a painful shot of the former twin towers, but that’s not what I want to call to your attention here.  It’s the fact that this intro is accompanied by Carly Simon’s “Let the River Run,” which I want to talk about in the next sentence.  She received an Academy Award for Best Song for it.  Hooray!

Last but certainly not least, the comedy film went on to gross about 103 million at the box office easily covering up its 28 million dollar budget.  That’s not to bad for your everyday run-of-the-mill comedy, huh?  I must admit something.  I felt really dumb after learning all of this and questioning myself as to why I never seen this movie before?  So that ladies and gentlemen is why we are all here, for me to right this awful wrong in my life.

The story of Working Girl is not one of utter originality.  It’s a familiar story we have all seen time and time again.  However, as I said before, what makes it really tick, at least for me, is this cast (and no I am not talking about the one Weaver wears after her skiing accident).  There are some conveniences and cliches that come into play throughout, but it’s the magic and chemistry of this cast that really pulls through and absolutely shines.  And let’s be honest, who doesn’t like an underdog story?  To me the most favorable tales are ones of redemption and rising up to be what one can be, and Working Girl is no exception.

Woking Girl tells the tale, the pitfalls and the rise, of secretary Tess McGill (Griffith) in her quest to be all she can be.  There are moments where she’s on top of the world, but then like every “good” script that “All Is Lost Moment” punches you right in the gut and she’s thrown back into the proverbial waters to once again fend for herself.  However, that’s what movie magic is all about.  You don’t want a film where everything goes perfect throughout for your protagonist, do you?  Hell no!  You want problems, complications and obstacles to overcome and thankfully that’s something, despite being fairy tale-like at times, that Working Girl, in my opinion, accomplishes well.  Like Rocky is to fighters, Working Girl is to secretaries.  Bravo, Mr. Wade, on a charming script.

Working Girl


For those of you who are haters of grain, you might have some qualms with this one, but nonetheless let’s cover the basics here of this Blu-ray presentation.

  • Encoding: AVC MPEG-4 @ 32 MBPS
  • Resolution: 1080p
  • Size: 50GB Dual Layer
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Clarity/Detail: I really want to lie to you and say this transfer is the bomb diggity, but my nose would grow to unwanted lengths if I did so.  As I mentioned up above, there’s a lot of grain throughout so that has the ability to make things which otherwise would normally look razor sharp appear a tad on the soft side.  That’s not to mention there’s not fine details in the textures here, but I just wanted to upfront and honest about how things may appear softer than they really should appear since we are talking about clarity and detail in this category.
  • Depth: Let’s table the discussion about depth due to the grain employed throughout here, shall we?
  • Black Levels: The black levels were average and satisfactory.
  • Color Reproduction: The colors can come across a tad dull, but it’s the bright ones that pop like Weaver’s ski uniform for example.
  • Flesh Tones: Due to the pale color palette, I still found the skin tones to be average looking and somewhat natural throughout.
  • Noise/Artifacts: I already mentioned the grain up above so you’ve been warned.  I don’t mind it though as to me it gives it that real, warm, fuzzy cinematic look that I grew up with, not the razor sharp HD picture we’ve all grown accustomed to nowadays.

Working Girl


If you’re anything like me, you probably hate the phrase it is what is right?  Well get use to it here because it really is what it is.

  • Audio Format(s): English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, English Surround Dolby Digital 2.0, Spanish Dolby Digital 1.0, French Dolby Digital 5.1
  • Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
  • Dynamics: This is a 1980’s comedy for crying out loud.  Do not expect much magic to happen here in the audio department.  It truly is what it is.
  • Low Frequency Extension: Your dog is not going to have any problem lying on the floor next to the subwoofer throughout this presentation.  You picking up what I’m dropping?
  • Surround Sound Presentation: Again, don’t expect much here.  However, there is the Carly Simon song that somewhat immerses your viewing experience in the beginning as well as select scenes where atmospheric presence and hustling activity warrant making themselves known in the rear speakers.  Other than that, this is pretty much what you would expect from a 1980’s comedy, front end heavy, like a Ford Mustang.
  • Dialogue Reproduction: The dialogue, due to it being mostly front driven, is clear and intelligible.

Working Girl


Working Girl may pack some laughs depending upon your state of mind and ultimately your sense of 80’s humor, but what it doesn’t pack is anything remotely considered as a bonafide extra in my professional opinion.  In addition to a Digital HD file good for enjoying the sassiness of Working Girl on the run, it only comes to Blu-ray with the following two minimal set of weak sauce, Standard Definition special features.  And they are…

  • Theatrical Trailers (SD, 3:24)
  • TV Spots (SD, 1:36)

Working Girl


I guess some may consider Working Girl just another comedy from the 1980’s, but for this being my first viewing I really liked what I saw.  It’s always nice to watch something new, albeit not the most fresh in terms of subject matter, and see how young the stars you grew up with really looked back then now that we are all older (getting old really sucks).  In other words, it’s like taking a trip down memory lane for most fans.  So with that being said, despite the grainy picture, it’s a fun film that works in its genre niche and with a price tag currently of $10~ on Amazon, how can you go wrong with this newer catalog release from Fox?  That’s a rhetorical question yo!  Hit up the order link down below and enjoy!

Working Girl Blu-ray Cover Art


Owner/Writer/Reviewer/Editor, Dreamer, Producer, Agent of Love, Film Lover, Writer of Screenplays and a Devoted Apostle to all things Ford Mustangs (the real ones with V8's!). Some of my favorite films include FIGHT CLUB, MOULIN ROUGE, THE DARK KNIGHT, STAR WARS alongside television shows such as SEINFELD, 24, SANFORD & SON and even the often loathed in the geek community BIG BANG THEORY. Outside of my three lives I live I also enjoy spending time with my girlfriend and our three girls (of the furry kind).

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