PictureYou Don't Mess with the Zohan comes to Blu-ray with a slightly disappointing video presentation. I suspect that much of it is due to the filming techniques and should be regarded as intentional, but for a brand new movie, the film can be occasionally lacking in the video department. Detail is generally very good throughout, although the close-ups look a bit too polished and the video does not keep up well with fast motions, even hand movements and walking does not always work - possibly due to the fact that it was all shot with HD cameras. I know this is supposed to mean that everything looks perfect, but it does not always work out that way, and the distinct lack of grain has obviously been due to serious DNR work (if you watch some of the Deleted Scenes you can compare to what the un-polished footage looks like), leaving the end result often a little unrealistic. Given the comedic intention behind the movie, it really is far less distracting than it would be in a serious action affair, and you can forgive whatever defects in the light of the fact that it still appeals to the eyes, not least because of a vivacious colour scheme that mirrors the eccentricity of the central character himself. The tones are rendered well, bright and vivid, New York looking more vibrant than it ever has and blacks making for decent shadowing and low-lighting sequences. It is not a bad video presentation, just one with issues, but luckily the punchy comedy is good enough to keep you distracted.
SoundTo accompany the movie on the aural front we get a superior Dolby TrueHD 5.1 track that I had no reservations with. The dialogue comes across clearly and coherently, despite the heavily overemphasised mock-accents and slurring of words, and it always takes precedence over the rest of the track, coming predominantly from across the fronts and centre channels. The effects are fairly numerous - mainly because this is largely a sight-gag comedy, with plenty of self-mocking action and purposefully exaggerated stunts - and everything from the gunshots to the explosions, to the helicopter noises, and ludicrous hand-to-hand combat blows, comes across with significant punch. All of the background noises work well too, although they often take a secondary role to the score, which is heavily populated by song tracks to accompany the action/salon sequences. There's even some bass to round off a thoroughly enjoyable audio offering.
VerdictYou Don't Mess with the Zohan is an outstanding Adam Sandler action-comedy, hilarious almost throughout and refreshingly original with its unusual subject matter (Israeli counter-terrorist fakes death to become a hairdresser in a Palestinian salon in New York). Even if you're not a huge Sandler fan, you're likely to find plenty of laughs in this one, and if you like him, you'll love this. On Blu-ray it comes with an interesting package - the video looks a little processed and not quite as real as it should, but the audio sounds superb, and with the release brimming with extras, there's very little to actual disappoint fans here (how many people are going to be watching this movie for shiny visuals?) and this one comes recommended as a blind buy. It's one of those few movies which actually live up to the expectations brought on by the excellent trailer - so if you have any reservations, go check that out, and then add this one to your shopping cart.
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