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Jane is an idealistic, romantic and completely selfless woman—a perennial bridal attendant whose own happy ending is nowhere in sight. But, when younger sister Tess captures the heart of Jane's boss—with whom she is secretly in love—Jane begins to reexamine her "always-a-bridesmaid" lifestyle.
For more about 27 Dresses and the 27 Dresses Blu-ray release, see 27 Dresses Blu-ray Review published by Martin Liebman on April 22, 2008 where this Blu-ray release scored 4.0 out of 5.
Starring: Katherine Heigl, James Marsden, Malin Akerman, Judy Greer, Edward Burns, Melora Hardin
Director: Anne Fletcher
» See full cast & crew
27 Dresses Blu-ray Review
A far better movie and Blu-ray than the previous 27 romantic comedies I've seen.
Reviewed by Martin Liebman, April 22, 2008
I think you love weddings so much because you'd rather focus on other people's Kodak moments than make memories of your own.
Most of these romantic comedies that I so dread reviewing actually turn out alright, and 27 Dresses is no exception. Better than "alright," this is in fact a good movie, and coming from me, someone who would pull out a copy of Commando one thousand times out of one thousand over a film such as this for my viewing pleasure, declaring this to be a "good" movie is special praise indeed. Definitely catered to the female audience, the movie nevertheless managed to sucker me in, perhaps because I'm not too far removed from my own wedding and could relate to much of what was happening during the film. 27 Dresses managed to overcome the apathetic nature I feel towards the romantic comedy, surprising me a great deal, proving to be right up there with Enchanted as two of the best romantic comedies I've ever seen.
"Always a bridesmaid, never a bride." That old 6-word adage has now been stretched into a 105 minute, feature length picture entitled 27 Dresses, directed by Anne Fletcher (Step Up). Katherine Heigl (Knocked Up) plays Jane, a well-to-do career woman who, since the first wedding she attended while still in grade school, has been the go-to girl when it comes to her friend's weddings. Tops at planning, attending, and saving many weddings, it's a wonder she hasn't made a career out of it. Perhaps the reason why is because she longs for the day when she can add one more dress to her over-stuffed closet filled with 27 bridesmaids dresses: a wedding dress of her own. She has her eye on her boss, the charming George (Edward Burns, One Missed Call), but when Jane's sister Tess (Malin Akerman, The Brothers Solomon) arrives from out-of-town, she and George fall into a whirlwind romance, one based on, shall we say, some fudging of the truth on the part of Tess, leading to a marriage proposal and a three-week engagement. Never able to say "no" or express her feelings, a dejected Jane goes along with it, knowing it to be wrong but wanting to play the role she was born to and facilitate, plan, and once again wear yet another bridesmaids dress to a wedding. New York Journal society columnist Kevin Doyle (James Marsden, X-Men: The Last Stand) runs into Jane at a wedding and catches wind of her story, gets to know her, and eventually convinces Tess to allow him to cover her wedding but also secretly pens a tale about the poor girl who never gets to wear the white dress, leading each character to examine themselves, one another, what they believe in, and who they love.
Offering audiences characters with real-feeling, engaging personalities, just enough emotion to stir the soul, the tear ducts, and the muscles that make you smile but never becoming too dramatic, overdone, mushy, or feel-good, 27 Dresses seems to have found the perfect balance between the extremes of the emotional reactions such films tend to try and elicit from their audiences. I never felt like the movie tried too hard to tug at my emotional strings just for the sake of tugging, attempted to get a cheap laugh out of my funny bone, or sold me a story I'd seen before and make me feel like a sucker for having given it my time and attention. No, 27 Dresses may very well be the perfect chick flick in the eyes of this action movie lover, one that made me appreciate the effort and story, care for the characters, and cheer for the proper resolutions to the story lines, all without reverting to any kind of sappy or trite, overplayed, or unbalanced and unreal situations, characters, or plot lines.
What really makes it all come together is the excellent cast assembled for this project. All four primaries -- Katherine Heigl, James Marsden, Edward Burns, and Malin Akerman -- all put on charming, believable performances. The well-played script allows us to get to know these characters, doing so much better than they know one another through most of the movie. The stark contrast between who we know each of these characters to be, as opposed to how they see one another, is the key to the story. Each displays their quirky sides as well as their more secretive, somewhat disdainful, not-always-truthful sides, doing so in a way that is obvious to the audience but not so much to each other. These characters are deeper and somewhat more complex individuals than we're accustomed to seeing in such films, and it's their handling of the very smart script, penned by Aline Brosh McKenna (The Devil Wears Prada) that makes 27 Dresses the smart, classy, fun movie that it is.
Probably the best part of 27 Dresses is that it doesn't try to be trendy and hip, those films that aim for those goals generally finding themselves clichéd, bland, and boring. Instead, this movie defies convention and manages to create a believable, real-world atmosphere, one that might be just a bit overplayed and dramatic at times, but a world that we can easily and comfortably slip into, like an old favorite suit jacket for the guys or dress for the ladies, as the case may be. Fortunately, 27 Dresses breathes a bit of new life into the romantic comedy genre. The genre has been, is, and will continue to be a successful one with or without the occasional re-invigoration. Still, this movie has managed to create an identity separate from its peers, never becoming so cookie-cutter as to become an afterthought. Perhaps the absolute best chick-flick I've seen to date, 27 Dresses is definitely worth its nearly 105 minute engagement time.
27 Dresses Blu-ray, Video Quality
27 Dresses and Blu-ray wed to produce a fine looking 1080p, 2.35:1 high-definition image. Another winner from Fox, this may be the best looking Romantic Comedy available on home video. For a movie that didn't "need" to look great, this one does anyway, and only some softness in a few select shots keep this one from rivaling the best of the best the format has seen so far. The level of detail seen throughout the movie is impeccable. Some shots of the city, even some taking place at night, offer first-rate definition and clarity, the secondary objects in the frame (background buildings, the concrete on the ground) proves to be just as highly detailed and vibrant as the primary objects (people and automobiles). Colors are vibrant and exciting, especially any sequence showcasing a wedding or a wedding dress. A scene taking place at a "traditional" Indian-Jewish wedding offers up some remarkable color definition and reproduction, showcasing some excellent shades in some unusual places. Black levels are nearly perfect, perhaps wavering or brightening ever so slightly, but hardly enough to nitpick over, but just barely missing the mark so as to describe them as "perfect." Flesh tones appear excellent and clean, well-reproduced and natural. The print is in pristine condition, no surprise for a brand new film. There is an ever-so-fine layer of grain present throughout the entirety of the film, a layer that adds a theatrical look and charm to the proceedings, never becoming intrusive or heavy. The entire movie, like the best Blu-rays tend to do, reproduces that film-like, theatrical look and feel. Perhaps the best example is any sequence taking place in Jane's apartment. Its interior, made up primarily by white, green, yellow, and tan shades look marvelous, real, and deep, definitely three-dimensional, placing us in there with her. Another fine effort from Fox, 27 Dresses is no slouch on Blu-ray.
27 Dresses Blu-ray, Audio Quality
As usual, Fox suits up 27 Dresses in a DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack, and the end result is, like the video quality, one of the best offerings, sonically, the genre has to offer. Music plays a large role in this film, and it sounds fantastic. The music heard throughout, especially during the numerous wedding ceremonies and montages, is reproduced expertly and pleasantly. The music always finds its way into the back speakers, creating an immersive and fun atmosphere. The result is a musical experience worth the cost of the disc. The one problem I encountered was that dialogue will sometimes get a bit lost underneath the music, but for the most part, this was not a problem. Dialogue itself is very well handled, always played at the appropriate volume (when not accompanied by loud music) and focused and cleanly reproduced in the center channel. Otherwise, this soundtrack offers little in the way of action. A rainstorm at one point in the movie is perhaps the best sonic experience to be had during the film's 105 minute runtime. It's good, just like the rest of the track, as thunder reverberates and is well-placed in the appropriate location of the soundstage. When the perspective shifts, so to does the position of the sound; the result is excellent imaging, the mark of a well-designed, natural-sounding mix. The rear channels are also employed on occasion to create some very nice, discrete, low key, but important and necessary ambience. This is not a flashy, loud, and ambitious soundtrack, but it doesn't have to be. It does what it is supposed to, and does so expertly. What more could you ask for?
27 Dresses Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
Fox has provided a decent array of extras for this release, though they obviously cater more to the female Blu-ray audience, lacking many technical aspects or behind-the-scenes looks at the meatier parts of filmmaking. First up is The Wedding Party (1080p, 14:31). An average promotional piece, cast and crew talk about the plot (giving much of it away) and the characters, spliced together with many scenes straight from the movie, and really serving no purpose to anyone whose seen the movie. You'll Never Wear That Again (1080p, 6:46) examines the actual 27 dresses seen in the movie, the importance and role of the wardrobe of the "ugly" dresses found in Jane's closet, and the search for the worst looking dresses available. Jane's World (1080p, 4:38) looks at filming in Rhode Island in favor of New York proper, the sets, and the wedding parties seen throughout the movie. The Running of the Brides (480p, 5:05) seems to be an advertisement for a store named "Filene's Basement" and an event held every year at the store where brides can purchase their dresses heavily discounted. Finally, three deleted scenes (480p, 3:58) round out the extra features.
27 Dresses Blu-ray, Overall Score and Recommendation
Far from the type of movie I normally enjoy, 27 Dresses makes up for its lack of action, drama, or scares with charm and wit, well-scripted characters, a predictable but interesting plot, and more than a few touching scenes throughout. Don't let the awkward cover art, subject material, or "chick flick" label scare you away from seeing this movie. I cannot promise you'll like it as much as I did, but I doubt it'll sink to the depths of your most hated list, either. This Blu-ray disc offers excellent audio and video quality, easily the best looking and sounding romantic comedy on Blu-ray. The supplements were of the breadth and quality expected for a release such as this one, offering up some decent materials but nothing truly Earth-shattering. Easy to relate to, fun to watch, and fairly refreshing and original, 27 Dresses may not be the movie that will take Blu-ray into the mainstream of America, or even find its way into the majority of Blu-ray collections, but it sure is worth checking out. Enthusiastically recommended!
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27 Dresses Blu-ray, News and Updates
• Specs Announced for 27 Dresses - March 7, 2008
Fox Home Entertainment has announced the specs for their upcoming Blu-ray release of the Katerine Heigl film '27 Dresses', which will be released on April 29th, day-and-date with the DVD release. Video will be presented in 1080p AVC accompanied by a 5.1 DTS-HD ...
• 27 Dresses, Short Circuit Coming to Blu-ray - February 27, 2008
Over at TVGuide.com, Dave Lambert of TVShowsonDVD.com fame posted some information about upcoming Blu-ray releases. The Katherine Heigl film '27 Dresses' will be released for Blu-ray by Fox on April 29th, day-and-date with the DVD release. Also revealed, is that ...
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