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HTF DVD REVIEW: Jack and Jill Vs. the World (1 Viewer)


Senior HTF Member
May 9, 2002
Real Name
Cameron Yee

Jack and Jill Vs. the World

Release Date: Available now (original release date June 17, 2008)
Studio: First Look Studios
Packaging/Materials: Standard single-disc DVD case
Year: 2008
Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 1h27m
Video: 1.85:1 anamorphic
Audio: Dolby Digital: English 5.1, English Stereo
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
MSRP: $24.98

The Feature: 2/5
Jack (Freddie Prinze, Jr.) is your stereotypical New York City advertising executive. He makes a lot of money, prefers his furniture black and modern, and is really uptight. Jill (Taryn Manning) is the exact opposite. She's poor, obviously loves the color pink, and is a free spirit. But there's a reason why Jill is so "carpe diem" - she has cystic fibrosis and probably won't live past her twenties. The only thing Jack knows is she's different from every marriage-hungry woman he runs across and he can't help but fall for her. A serious disease is a tough thing to hide though, especially in a developing relationship. When her secret comes out will their fledgling romance be strong enough to withstand the strain?

"Jack and Jill Vs. the World" has all the trappings of an off-kilter-but-insightful independent film, but barely the ambitions or the material to be a below-average romantic comedy / medical melodrama. Most of the problems have to do with the lead actors. Prinze, apparently trying to play against his likeable, guy-next-door image, is entirely too dour and comes off as a grump, even when he's supposed to be loosening up. Manning's performance garners more sympathy, but she plays the part too cutesy sometimes and it borders on annoying. Hair and makeup also did a number on her - she looks sickly from her first scene, which not only telegraphs her character's "secret" but makes Jack's attraction to her questionable. The nail in the coffin is the predictable story arc, which would have been forgivable with more endearing leads, but without them the film just feels like a failed attempt to mimic a studio genre film.

Video Quality: 2.5/5
The film is correctly framed at 1.85:1 and mostly free of dust, dirt and damage. The picture overall is on the soft side, with few moments looking especially sharp. Black levels are also variable, looking clipped at some points and a bit too open at others. Compression noise is visible at times, though there appears to be no edge enhancement.

Audio Quality: 3/5
The Dolby Digital 5.1 audio mix is mostly front focused, with few moments of directionality or bass activity. Surround activity mostly consists of support for the soundtrack. Dialog, which makes up he bulk of the film, is clear enough, but has a noticeable roughness indicative of excessive compression. The roughness can be heard on the stereo track as well.

Special Features: 3/5

The Making of Jack and Jill (11m30s): Promotional piece with interviews of cast and crew.

On Set On Edge (24m35s): Online reality series, which looks behind the scenes of independent film, profiles the production of "Jack and Jill." An interesting look at the struggles involved with making a non-studio picture.

Deleted Scenes (1m39s): Two scenes related to the final scene.

Trailer (55s)

Previews: The Amateurs, King of California, Remember the Daze, Player 5150, and Senior Skip Day


The Feature: 3/5
Video Quality: 2.5/5
Audio Quality: 3/5
Special Features: 3/5
Overall Score (not an average): 2.5/5

A romantic comedy missing some fundamental charm gets adequate audio and video transfers and an acceptable special features package.

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