Jersey Girl DVD Review
PictureSmith is not renowned for his impressive camera work or cinematography but hiring renowned DoP Vilmos Zsigmond has ensured the movie is well lit and framed. He is still very unadventurous with his camera, basically plonking it in front of his actors and shouting “Action” and “Cut” but the nature of the story doesn't demand much more. In terms of the picture quality of the DVD it is mediocre which for a modern movie means the image is clean and free of damage. The colours are warm and realistic with accurate skin tones, and contrast is spot on requiring no adjustment. The overall image is a little soft but does not distract.
SoundSound is recorded in Dolby Digital 5.1 at 448kbps and is totally....adequate. There is no use of the split surrounds or the bass registers, so if you have a pair of stereo speakers you are good to go. Once again however it is perfectly acceptable in the context of the movie. One saving grace in the soundtrack is the fact that Smith chooses some cool rock tracks, and you will be rewarded with great stuff from the likes of Springsteen, Pete Townshend and The Cure.
ExtrasKevin Smith loves the DVD format and as a result is always keen to add as much extra value as possible. As a result he is responsible for two feature tracks. The first and best is his chat track with Ben Affleck. The two friends talk extensively about the movie making experience with insight and intelligence and no small part of humour. They rant about the British tabloid press, the affect the Ben and Jen affair had on the box office and the use of focus groups in the development of a movie. They talk around the flim rather than about it but it is still one of the most worthy listens I have had in a long while. Track two sees Smith in the chair again this time with producer Scott Mosier, and life long heterosexual soul mate Jason Mewes, who was unavailable for the shooting of this movie due to his drug habit, which we happily learn is now behind him. This is a more factually commentary on the movie and somewhat less entertaining. Mewes who famously passed out on the chat track of Clerks, is much more reserved and far less controversial (and hence funny) than on previous commentaries but I always find Smith's point of view worthwhile and usually amusing, and this proves to be the case here.
The “Behind the Scenes” featurette is a chance for Smith and co. to pimp his previous movies, and is disappointingly traditional in terms of the content. Informative...? Yes. Ass licking..? Yes. For a better insight into the film making talent that is Kevin Smith you need to watch the ”From Mallrats to Jersey Girl” featurette. Essentially a series of recollections by Smith and Affleck, which reflects the affection the two guys have for each other, and some great stories from their film making experiences together. Great fun, foul language and substantially funny.
Feeling like a bit of an after thought (which it probably was) are the “Roadside Attraction” featurettes originally aired on the Jay Leno Show. They are shorts about Kevin's trips around the roadside attractions of America and are extremely funny, but bear no relevance on this disc. Filler but very enjoyable filler.
VerdictJersey Girl is a conventional romantic comedy which is moving, well written, well acted but....well, conventional. The disc is also conventional in terms of its presentation and its extras. Smith admits on the chat track that he is producing a special edition with an extra 20 minutes and more extras so if you're a big Smith fan (and I am) you may want to wait for that. In the mean time get Chasing Amy, and see just what an outstanding romantic comedy is like.
Suggested retail price when reviewed: £29.99
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