Senior HTF Member
- Oct 30, 1997
- Aberdeen, MD & Navesink, NJ
- Real Name
- Sam Posten
The 40-Year-Old-Virgin - Unrated
Blu Ray Title: The 40-Year-Old-Virgin - Unrated
Disk Release Date: 30 September, 2008
Rated: Unrated and R rated available through seamless branching
Screen format: 1080P High Definition Widescreen 1.85:1
First theatrical release: 19 August, 2005
Previous releases on disk: HD DVD and Anamorphic Widescreen DVD on 22 May, 2007
Director: Judd Apatow
Starring: Steve Carrell, Catherine Keener, Paul Rudd, Seth Rogan, Romany Malco
Sound Formats: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, Spanish & French DTS 5.1
Length: 2 Hours 13 minutes unrated, 1 hour 57 minutes rated
Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
Note that much of this content is based on my prior HD DVD review although all differences have been highlighted as best as possible.
Everyone remembers their first time, but hapless stereo store worker Andy Stitzer (Carrell) has managed to live to the ripe age of 40 without ever having sex, or having any friends who have figured out that he hasn’t had it. Andy’s life takes a sharp turn when his fellow employees discover his secret, and make it their mission in life to help him overcome this challenge. While T40YOV certainly has its share of jokes and constant laughs, it does so wrapped in a morality tale that focuses on Andy’s own fears and triumphs as he breaks out of his shell and does the unthinkable: falls in love.
In this breakout role for unlikely leading man Carrell, improvisational riffs on the material produce the biggest laughs, most contributed by the band of misfits and trouble makers who start off as his co-workers and become his friends. While Cal (Seth Rogen), Jay (Romany Malco) and David (Rudd) contribute the lion’s share of the antics (often at the expense of their own dignity), it’s the unexpected scene stealing from Mooj (Gerry Bednob) that viewers will likely most remember. While love interest Trish (Keener) gets the higher billing, she is reduced to almost a miniscule role and produces the fewest memorable scenes and contributing very little to the humor.
This BluRay features seamless branching which lets viewers choose to watch either the unrated cut or the rated R theatrical version. While the Unrated version shows a number of glitches and bad edits it has a lot more funny bits and really fleshes out the story well, although it does so at the expense of brevity making the rather simple plot a bit drawn out. This was my fourth or fifth time viewing this film and I find that it is definitely one that grows better with repeat showings.
Sound Quality: 4/5
This BluRay’s soundtrack makes the jump to uncompressed DTS and I found the mix to be even more engaging than I remember from the HD DVD, with solid low end and moderate use of rears for subtle environmental cues. This is a dialogue driven comedy but the music alone makes this a real treat of a soundtrack. From the very moment this movie starts viewers will note the amazing musical arrangement as an eclectic mix of pop tunes burst out of the front sound stage to fill all corners in ways that they never have before, starting with Joe Walsh’s ‘Life of Illusion’ and somehow ending with the original cast recording of ‘The Age of Aquarius’… Even the repeated use of Michael McDonald as demo material in the Smart Tech store can’t bring down the energy that flows in James Brown’s ‘I got ants in my Pants’, ‘Joy’ by Apollo 100 or even the sentimental soul of Lionel Ritchie’s ‘Hello’. While composer Lyle Workman has valiantly added an inventive score, it is mostly overwhelmed by the songs we already know, as they are presented in a new light and also have the most impact.
Visual Quality: 3.5/5
Overall I found the BluRay to look identical to how the HD DVD appeared in motion. The film itself has a bit of trouble with sharpness and it seems like many of the faces have some form of artificial softening applied, and I had noted that in my HDDVD review and it immediately struck me here as well.
Outside of sharpness, in detail and color respects this film looks perfectly fine but I’ve seen a lot more HD transfers and wasn’t quite as floored this go around. It has a naturally light and vibrant look that matches the vibe of the film and this transfer nails what I expect was the look of the original print. While most scenes are pin sharp, there are some situations where several of the characters appear to be out of focus or are blurry either deliberately or due to bad cinematography, but it does not appear that this transfer is the cause of either. I suspect those who go nuts over such details will have pulled screen captures of both versions for infinite review, but in motion I only really noted it because the rest of the film looked just fine.
I never noted any instances of grain, artifacts, dust or other elements that would be at all distracting. Even the night scenes did not exhibit excessive grain, they looked sharp and detailed as the rest of the film. Like the HD DVD For this appears to be a moderately crisp transfer with just a few minor complaints but it is well balanced and a very good representation of the theatrical look.
Extra Features: 5/5
First off it bears repeating that this BD-50 contains both edits of the film using seamless branching, so right off it has something the HD DVD does not. Next up is the use of U-Control, which I still hate but at least these clips can be selected scene by scene or set to all play. Just like on the HD DVD those that I watched were VERY good, but I really don’t care to rewatch films multiple times to see all the extras. There’s two full length commentaries this time, one with Apatow and one with Carell and the rest of the cast. There is also 30+ minutes of deleted scenes, all of which have optional director’s commentary.
Then there is the actual extras clips themselves, which are almost too numerous to list and seem to be pulled directly from the HD DVD. Director Apatow includes his full daily video diary logs. There’s a selection of cast auditions. There’s a profile of Carell improvising his solo scenes in Andy’s apartment. Comedy Central provided a ‘Roundtable’ where cast and crew got together to discuss the film. Cinemax provided a behind the scenes profile from their Final Cut series. There is an extended look at the Poker scene which is pivotal to Andy revealing his secret. My favorites however remain the ‘Palooza’ featurettes that show the cast trying new directions on each scene and the ‘Know how I know you are gay?’ reel which lets the actors insult each other for extended periods. And there’s a ton more I STILL haven’t had a chance to dig all the way through yet, including a few that I don’t recall from the HD DVD. Most of these are presented in standard definition but look great.
Overall: 4/5 (not an average)
I originally declared The 40 Year Old Virgin as not up to the level of one of Universal’s most treasured classics, and in reviewing it again I have to back off on that a little bit. It certainly gets funnier with multiple viewings but there are still big lags in the middle and other minor problems that bug me about it. Among the genre of raunchy comedies it’s got a lot of appeal and because of its wide target audience it can probably be marketed to make a big splash, but the depth of extras on this disk, like the HD DVD, is the kind of treatment that seriously needs to expand to the films that deserve it more. It’s hard to go wrong with the solid backing this disk brings to every category but nothing really jumps out as ‘greatness’ other than the Extras, but for those who aren’t debating an upgrade from HD DVD this single BluRay should be an easy buy.