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Home Theater Movie Renter's Guide - March, 2011

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"The Switch" (Blu-ray) - Reviewed by Chris Eberle

movie-march-2011-switch

Synopsis

Best friends Kassie (Aniston) and Wally (Bateman) meet one day for lunch where she announces her plans to conceive a child.  After finding a suitable donor in Roland (Wilson), she throws a conception party where she plans to “do the deed.”  Wally comes to the party and proceeds to drink about 10 cocktails too many as he tries to talk Kassie out of her plan.  He then manages to accidentally destroy Roland’s “offering” and is left with no choice but to replace it with his own.  The next day he remembers nothing.

Kassie has her baby and moves away from New York but after her new son Sebastian (Robinson) turns six, she returns to find Wally just the same as she left him.  Of course, the child looks just like him and even has many of his mannerisms and neuroses.  Wally finally remembers the events of the conception party and must find a way to come clean with Kassie.  Meanwhile, she has become attracted to Roland and he to her.  Just as he is about to propose, Wally tells all in front of Roland’s family and all their friends.  The ending is a happy one however as Wally and Kassie finally progress beyond friendship bound together by their endearing son.

Specifications

  • Lionsgate
  • 2010, Color, Rated PG-13, 1 Hr 41 min
  • Aspect Ratio:  2.35:1
  • Codec: VC-1
  • 1080p
  • English, 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
  • Starring:  Jennifer Aniston, Jason Bateman, Patrick Wilson, Jeff Goldblum, Juliette Lewis, Thomas Robinson
  • Directed by Josh Gordon & Will Speck
Rating
  • Entertainment:
  • Video:
  • Audio:
  • Extras:
  • Violence: No
  • Sex: Nudity
  • Language: No

Commentary

I’ve reviewed enough films now that I didn’t expect to like and did, that this will be the last time I say “I found this movie surprisingly enjoyable.”  My mind will be more open from now on!  Though it had the feel of a romantic comedy, there wasn’t much romance until the end and the comedy was used sparingly.  Yet, the film worked extremely well.  The story was engaging and never dragged, and the acting was superb from all players.  Aniston and Bateman gave top-notch performances as expected but the real show-stealer was eight-year-old Thomas Robinson as Sebastian.  Not only is he impossibly cute, his acting skills are quite considerable.  He commanded every scene he was in with comfort and ease.  He used adult words as if he had been born speaking that way.  To say I was impressed with him would be an understatement.  Overall, the movie worked because it had just the right balance of talent, good direction and an interesting plot.  Highly recommended.

Technical

Image quality was very good with sharp detail and no obvious edge enhancement.  Color was a bit on the cool side except in the outdoor scenes at night when the warmth of the streetlights was evident.  Overall, I would have liked to see just a bit more saturation.  Contrast was decent with just slightly elevated black levels apparent.

Audio was clean and clear at all times.  Dialog was always crisp though a tad over-processed in that the environmental cues were downplayed.  Conversations sounded the same whether they took place indoors or out.  The musical score by Alex Wurman mixed transitional phrases with pop songs for a nice backdrop to the film.  There was little for the surround speakers to do and no use was made of the LFE channel.

Extras

Bonus features include deleted scenes, an alternate ending, a behind-the-scenes featurette and a blooper reel.