What to Expect When You're Expecting (Blu-ray) (2012)
Featurette-Making Of-What to Expect and the Pregnancy Bible (15:23) 1080p.
Featurette-Making Of-The Dudes Unscrewed (12:09) 1080p.
Trailer-LOL (2:26) 2.40:1 / 1080p.
Trailer-Hope Springs (2:27) 2.40:1, 1080p.
|Year Of Production||2012|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Start Up||Ads Then Menu|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||Kirk Jones|
Roadshow Home Entertainment
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||
English DTS HD Master Audio 5.1 (4608Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||2.40:1|
|Original Aspect Ratio||2.40:1||Miscellaneous|
|Subtitles||English for the Hearing Impaired||Smoking||No|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||Yes, Dance contest action pre credits.|
Recently released by Roadshow is the comedy What to Expect When You're Expecting. Based on a best-selling book - by 2008 fifteen million copies! - which chronicled impending motherhood this film undoubtedly had a pre-programmed audience, which may account for its decent success at the box office. Another factor which undoubtedly contributed to its drawing power was an ""all star"cast, though the term "star" would need some modification to embrace all the actors here involved in principal roles. So audiences were enticed into seats with the expectation of a movie big on plot, loaded with interesting characters and populated by attractive, entertaining stars. If only that was true. Instead, what we get is a travesty of a movie that is totally tasteless and, more importantly, very unfunny.
The screenplay from Shauna Cross (Whip It), based on the book by Heidi Murkoff, concentrates on four couples. Jules (Cameron Diaz / Knight and Day) is a fitness instructor who in the movie's opening is competing in a TV reality dance contest partnered by her boyfriend Evan (Matthew Morrison / Glee). The couple win the contest and the huge gold cup is presented into which Jules promptly vomits. The show's host make some crack about hoping she isn't pregnant, and the tone for the following two hours has been set. A second couple is Wendy (Elizabeth Banks / Man on a Ledge) and Gary (Ben Falcone / Bridesmaids). Wendy runs a trendy baby boutique, The Breast Choice, while hubby Gary lives under the heavy cloud cast by the macho figure of his father Ramsey (Dennis Quaid / Pandorum), a famous NASCAR driver. When Wendy and Gary go to the paternal residence to announce their impending parenthood, Ramsey steals their thunder by announcing that he and his much younger trophy wife (Brooklyn Decker / Battleship) are expecting twins. A third couple comprises successful photographer Holly (Jennifer Lopez / Out of Sight) and husband Alex (Rodrigo Santoro / I Love You Phillip Morris). Having unsuccessfully tried to conceive naturally, the pair opt for adoption. The fourth couple are the youngest, and strictly not a couple at least at the beginning of their relationship. These are two competing fast food truck operators, Marco (Chace Crawford / TV's Gossip Girl) and Rosie (Anna Kendrick / The Twilight Saga). Add to the mix a group of stroller pushing dads, headed by Chris Rock, who convene in the local park, and their jogging bachelor muscled friend (Joe Manganiello / TV's True Blood). Performances vary from the animated but bland - Lopez, Morrison, Crawford and Kendrick -to the grotesque, the worst being Dennis Quaid who looks and performs appallingly, mugging his face into a horrendous mask. Sadly almost as bad is poor Elizabeth Banks who, until two recent films, has been a lovely and effective actress, but in this and The Hunger Games she seems to have gone off the deep end, or been pushed off by inept directors. Minor supporting roles are also attention grabbingly bad, such as whoever it is playing the shop assistant in The Breast Choice. It is curious that TV comedy series are able to cast with such accuracy while big screen movies so frequently blunder in this department. There is, in this film, such uniform awfulness to the performances that we are forced to look to some unifying cause. Director Kirk Jones made his name in vodka commercials and has subsequently directed Waking Ned (1998),Nanny McPhee (2005) and Everybody's Fine, which went direct to DVD in 2009. I would like to see him return to vodka, but undoubtedly he will be responsible for more big screen "comedies".
I find it very difficult to review a film that is so despicably bad. There are abundant situations, but nothing truly comedic ever evolves. There are many - too many - characters, but no characterisation. Only the adoption sequence with Lopez and Santoro has any depth of emotion. After two hours of forced buffoonery we suddenly are threated with a potentially tragic change of direction which focusses on Elizabeth Banks'character. This is perhaps the most tasteless section of the film. To treat what is potentially extreme human drama with such flippant disregard is surely offensive. Is there anyone out there who remembers the little Columbia black-and-white comedy called The Marrying Kind (1952), the story of the trials of a young married couple played by the legendary Judy Holliday and gravel-voiced Aldo Ray? This charming and real comedy switched from a happy, ukele playing picnic by a lake to an unbearably stark family tragedy in the blink of an eye. The script was by Ruth Gordon and Garson Kanin (Adam's Rib) and the director was George Cukor (Garland's A Star is Born), and there lies the difference. Sixty years ago The Marrying Kind was, and still is, a touchingly funny movie about real people. What to Expect When You're Expecting is an ugly gargantuan that is not worth serious, or comedic, consideration.
Colours are on the warm side, with vibrant hues across the full spectrum. As has become the lamentable norm, skin tones tend towards the orange.
I could see no sign of video artefacts.
This is mostly an eye-popping experience, and the quality does help make the viewing experience less painful.
There are subtitles available in English for the Hearing Impaired. These are very good, and are presented in basic white, centred at the foot of the image.
This disc contains two audio streams, DTS HD 5.1 and Dolby Stereo 2.0, which contains the descriptive narration.
Again, this is a perfect technical aspect of the presentation.
Dialogue is basically front and centred with every syllable crystal clear. There are no sync problems.
As you would expect with this genre, there is little going on in the surrounds. The exceptions are the opening dancing contest scene and a golf-cart chase sequence, but other than those isolated instances the surrounds are used basically for ambience, in particular the park scenes, and the rather bland music. The sub-woofer adds body to the music, but that's about all.
The Descriptive Narration for the Vision Impaired is fairly standard, delivered in a flat English accented male voice. It was interesting to note that there was no description of the actual moment when Miss Diaz was called upon to vomit in the opening sequence, only a reference to the contents of the trophy when Matthew Morrison triumphantly bore it, and the contents, aloft.
|Surround Channel Use|
The menu utilises a composite still of the four leading ladies, with a live-action insert montage of scenes from the film. Elevator-type music from the film plays under. Options presented are :
Scene Selection : Selection brings up an insert block of three thumbnails, which can be arrowed to a total of fifteen scenes. Music continues.
Bonus Features : Options are : Play All
What to Expect and the Pregnancy Bible
The Dudes Unscrewed
Setup : DTS 5.1
Captions :English Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired
Audio Description : Descriptive Narration for the Vision Impaired
Featurette : What to Expect and the Pregnancy Bible (15:23) :
Just about everyone connected to the film talks about the book, the movie and how awesome it has been to be involved. We see the author, the director, some of the stars and other lesser mortals. This is presented with footage from the film at 2.40:1, and interview material at 1.78:1, all in high definition.
Featurette : The Dudes Unscrewed (12:09) :
Here the "dads"get their opportunity. Presented in a mix of 1.78:1 for the interviews and 2.40:1 for excerpts, all in high definition.
Start-up Trailers :
LOL (2:17) : Presented in 1080p.
Hope Springs (2:26) Presented in 1080p.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The Region 4 release misses out on : DTS HD - MA 7.1
Deleted Scenes (5 minutes)
Trailer (2 minutes).
|DVD||SONY BLU RAY BDP-S350, using HDMI output|
|Display||Samsung LA55A950D1F : 55 inch LCD HD. Calibrated with THX Optimizer. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to DVD player. Calibrated with THX Optimizer.|
|Speakers||VAF DC-X fronts; VAF DC-6 center; VAF DC-2 rears; LFE-07subwoofer (80W X 2)|