Click Written By: Steve Koren and Mark O’Keefe Directed By: Frank Coraci US Theatrical Release: June 23, 2006 (Sony/ Columbia Pictures) US DVD Release: October 10, 2006 Running Time: 1:48:19 (27 chapter stops) Rating: PG-13 (For Language, Crude and Sex-Related Humor, and Some Drug References) Video: 1.85:1 Anamorphic (Extra Features: 1.78:1 anamorphic – woohoo!) Audio: English DD5.1, French DD5.1 (Extra Features: French DD2.0) Subtitles: English, French TV-Generated Closed Captions: English (Extra Features: None) Menus: Animated with film clips – no major spoilers, but no skipping. Packaging: Standard keepcase; one insert features cover images of other Sony Pictures titles, another insert is a promotional Blu-Ray brochure, and a third insert is a $3 in-store coupon good towards one of 18 different Sony Pictures titles. MSRP: $28.95 THE WAY I FEEL ABOUT IT: 2.5/5 Adam Sandler’s career shift from juvenile comedies to more middlebrow fare continues in Click, a sometimes heavy-handed Message Movie that is at least partially redeemed by its earnestness and some truly inspired comic moments (although it doesn’t entirely abandon the trademark Coraci/ Sandler goofiness). Some reviewers have compared it to Bruce Almighty (by the same screenwriters) or It’s A Wonderful Life, although in structure and theme it’s much closer to Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. Michael Newman (Sandler) is on the fast track at a high-powered New York architecture firm. You know the one – overly demanding boss, lots of glass walls, smartly dressed employees walking around With a Purpose. Sometimes it’s an advertising agency, or a law firm, or a magazine, and sometimes it’s in L.A. or Chicago, but the basic elements remain the same from film to film. It’s the Michael Caine of movie character employers. Michael (Newman, that is) is a talented guy, and he feels that if he just keeps his nose to the grindstone and focuses on his work, he’ll eventually make partner. And the faster he makes partner, the faster he’ll make that monster salary that will really provide for his family. So his home life involves a lot of model-building and architectural research, and not so much time spent with the wife and kids. (Have you figured out the Message yet?) When you think about it, though, perhaps the impossible-to-ignore Kate Beckinsale wasn’t the best choice to play a woman whose husband doesn’t pay her enough attention. A series of comic encounters with remote controls that Michael can’t quite keep straight prompts him to take an after-hours excursion to locate a universal remote that will take care of everything (or at least turn on the TV without causing him injury). He ends up at Bed, Bath and Beyond, where a long, dark hallway leads to a mysterious mad-scientist-lookin’ character known only as “Morty” (Christopher Walken). Morty has just the thing for him: a remote so advanced that it doesn’t even include a manual – just “point and click,” and it’ll figure out what you want it to do. Sounds too good to be true, right? Hang on, it gets even better. This amazing clicker doesn’t just control electronic appliances. It affects real life as well. I’ll refrain from providing much detail on that, so as not to spoil the film’s best jokes. Key to the plot, however, is the handy little doodad’s ability to fast-forward through boring and painful moments. Stuck in traffic? Just press the button and 90 minutes of stop-and-go is compressed to three Benny Hill-like seconds. Angry wife berating you? Click! That drawn-out fight passes in less time than it takes to say “yes, dear.” (Somewhere, right at this very moment, some DVD reviewer is writing a crack about using said remote to zip through this movie.) With the help of the magical remote, Michael quickly attains his career goals. Of course, there is a price to be paid. So what if the script has to fudge its logic a bit to get things to where the writers want them to be? That’s par for the course with this sort of story. Of greater concern are the events of the third act, which take a hard turn in a rather dark direction. In fact, the final 30 minutes of Click may be overly grim for this sort of flick – they’re a very far cry from the fart jokes that precede them. While it isn’t as front-loaded as those comedies that entirely neglect to be funny while they wrap up their plots, it does have a sense of schizophrenia about it. The cast gets high marks, along with the makeup artists who transform them in various ways. Admittedly, it’s not Adam Sandler’s best performance – he’s not quite on his game in some of the dramatic scenes – but he does well enough. Kate Beckinsale puts on a passable American accent for some reason, although for the most part she doesn’t have a lot to do. The supporting players really steal the show – Henry Winkler and Julie Kavner as Michael’s parents, David Hasselhoff as his eccentric boss, and Jennifer Coolidge as his wife’s loopy friend are all hysterical. And, of course, what more needs to be said about Christopher Walken doing deadpan wacky? That’s comedy gold. THE WAY I SEE IT: 4/5 Click was shot in HD, and is thus subject to the limitations of that format – digital grain is ever-present, not a problem in the daytime but sometimes becoming really obtrusive in darkly lit scenes. However, the DVD does a nice job with the source. Colors are rich and used to good effect to give different settings their own distinctive looks. The image shows good detail for the most part. Its major flaw is a noticeable amount of edge enhancement, but that doesn’t get too out of control. THE WAY I HEAR IT: 4/5 The audio is pretty solid, if imperfect. The mix is open and makes good use of the surround and LFE channels. Some effects blast loudly enough to sound a little unnatural in relation to the other sounds. Also, there is a slight echoing quality to some of the dialogue, as though it were ADRed in a planetarium. That’s not as obtrusive as it may sound, though – it’s only a slight effect. Overall, the disc sounds very good. THE SWAG: 2/5 (rating combines quality and quantity) Commentary With Star Adam Sandler, Director Frank Coraci, Co-writer Steve Koren, and Executive Producer Tim Herlihy The commentary is very informal and chatty – there is some interesting information about the production in there, but mostly it’s just banter and joking around. Deleted Scenes Four deleted scenes are included, running a total of three minutes. Two are actually alternate clips from scenes that are in the film. None of it is all that special. Featurettes Seven featurettes are included, running just ender a half hour in total. They have the light, enthusiastic feel of EPK material but actually contain a lot of cool information and behind-the-scenes footage. All of the principal actors, the director, and several members of the crew participate. They’re definitely worth checking out. Make Me Old And Fat (6:34) This covers the extensive makeup effects that were used on nearly all of the actors. Really amazing work (it’s worthy of recognition at Oscar time, which I’m sure it won’t receive). FX of Click (5:08) The CGI and other effects are covered in some detail. Many of the effects went completely unnoticed during the film – a very good sign. Design My Universe (4:45) As you might guess, this piece is about the production design. The variety of sets, flashbacks and flash-forwards make this pretty interesting. Cars of the Future (3:07) Coverage of the design and construction of various vehicles used in the film, from design drawings to intermediate models to full-sized props. Humping Dogs (1:10) Some of the most highbrow material in the film involves a running gag about an enormous stuffed animal that has a rather, um, seductive effect on various dogs. This explains how the dog wranglers wrangled their charges into the act. Yes, I was kidding about the “highbrow” thing. Director’s Take (4:21) A variety of clips of director Frank Coraci horsing around on the set, interspersed with comments from cast members about the hilarity he brought to the production. Fine Cookin’ (2:57) Behind-the-scenes footage of Adam Sandler joking and goofing around in his fat suit. Cute stuff. Trailers The trailers for Stranger Than Fiction, The Da Vinci Code and Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby play automatically when the disc in inserted. They can be skipped. The Benchwarmers (0:18) (DD2.0; 1.33:1 non-anamorphic) 50 First Dates (0:17) (DD2.0; 1.33:1 non-anamorphic) The Pursuit of Happyness (2:26) (DD2.0; 1.85:1 anamorphic) Casino Royale (2006) (1:19) (DD2.0; 1.85:1 anamorphic) Ghost Rider (2:00) (DD2.0; 2.35:1 anamorphic) Stranger Than Fiction (2:37) (DD2.0; 1.85:1 anamorphic) Spider-Man 3 (1:40) (DD2.0; 1.85:1 anamorphic) The Holiday (2:30) (DD2.0; 1.85:1 anamorphic) Open Season (2:32) (DD2.0; 1.85:1 anamorphic) The Da Vinci Code (2:00) (DD2.0; 2.35:1 non-anamorphic) Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby (0:32) (DD2.0; 1.85:1 non-anamorphic) SUMMING IT ALL UP The Way I Feel About It: 2.5/5 The Way I See It: 4/5 The Way I Hear It: 4/5 The Swag: 2/5 Click isn’t a great film by any stretch, but it is entertaining, with some very clever humor mixed in with the cheap jokes, and it has a nice, if painfully unsubtle, message. The audio and video are very good, albeit not what I would call reference quality. The special features are a mixed bag – the commentary and deleted scenes are nothing to write home about, but the featurettes are great. They cram more making-of goodness into their brief 30 minutes than some feature-length documentaries offer. Too bad they weren’t longer. If Click sounds up your alley, then go ahead and give it a shot. If not – well, you could do worse than this disc.