Elizabethtown Blu Ray Review (Paramount)
Elizabethtown is a 2005 tragicomedy film written, produced, and directed by Cameron Crowe (Almost Famous, Say Anything, Jerry Maguire, Singles, and Vanilla Sky). It was produced by actor Tom Cruise (Mission: Impossible franchise, Jack Reacher 1/2, Top Gun: Maverick, Suspect Zero, Shattered Glass, The Others, and Narc). Ashton Kutcher was originally cast as the lead for this. It premiered at the 2005 Venice Film Festival. The budget was $45 million and it grossed $52 million at the box office.Drew Baylor (played by: Orlando Bloom from The Lord of the Rings franchise, The Hobbit franchise, Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, and Retaliation) is a designer for a shoe company. When his latest design, hyped to be a great accomplishment in his life has a flaw that will cost the company $972 million to correct, Drew is shamed by his boss Phil Devoss (played by: Alec Baldwin from 30 Rock, The Departed, The Cooler, and The Hunt for Red October) before he gets fired. Disappointed in his failure, and the breakup with his girlfriend Ellen (played by: Jessica Biel from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Blade: Trinity, The Rules of Attraction, and Total Recall) after losing his job, he plans to commit suicide. He gets a call from his sister Heather (played by: Judy Greer from the Halloween franchise, Valley Girl, Playing with Fire, and Jurassic World) that his dad has died while visiting family in Elizabethtown, Kentucky. When his mother Hollie (played by: Susan Sarandon from Blackbird, The Jesus Rolls, Dead Man Walking and The Rocky Horror Picture Show) refuses to go, following a long feud between her and the rest of the Kentucky Baylors, Drew volunteers to retrieve the body. On the flight, Drew meets flight attendant Claire (played by: Kirsten Dunst from Spider-Man franchise, Interview with the Vampire, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, and Jumanji) who’s bored from the empty plane so she starts talking to him on his trip.She gives him advice, directions, and tips about his upcoming drive to Kentucky. She gives Drew her number when he leaves the flight after their time in the air. Drew makes arrangements for a cremation at his mother’s request but his other family members are against it. Drew struggles with his depression and he doesn’t have any luck when it comes to conversation to the people close to him so he calls stranger Claire out of desperation. They end up talking all night and connecting with each other over the phone. He meets her before her flight to Hawaii. This makes their newly growing bond even stronger. Drew deals with his family members Aunt Dora (played by: Paula Deen from Positively Paula), Uncle Dale (played by: Loudon Wainwright III from Jacknife, Knocked Up, Big Fish, and The 40-Year-Old Virgin), and their close friend Bill (played by: Bruce McGill from Timecop, Ride Along 1/2, Animal House, and Collateral) while trying to get everything set up for his father. Claire cancels her Hawaii trip, surprises him, and they hook up later on but it doesn’t well after he doesn’t respond to her feelings. Drew lost and confused about everything sees his sister and mother at his dad’s service. Claire shows up and motivates Drew to take one last ride with his father. Can Drew get over this loss and depression? Will he give Clair a chance or Was it just a fling????Elizabethtown has a nice blend of sadness and comedy which usually doesn’t mix but it works here. Director Cameron Crowe is always very personal with his projects and you can tell by his scripts. He puts his life experiences into his films. I thought Ahola was solid but Elizabethtown is his last real good feature in a long time. Cameron Crowe has a way with words and his dialogue is top notch. His writing material honestly makes any actor good when it comes to his movies. Orlando Bloom is a great example of that here. He is solid for the most part but he’s mainly there for his looks when it comes to cinema. He’s always been hit or miss but this was his best performance in his career so far. You really felt his pain on the screen and you just wanted his character to win in life finally after so much bad luck. Kirsten Dunst steals the show as Claire in this. At first, she’s kinda annoying and nosy but she grows on you during the movie. You fall in love with her the same time Drew does in Elizabethtown. She’s very passionate and she’s tries to make the best out of everything. Orlando Bloom and Kirsten Dunst have amazing chemistry here, it’s what really makes this dramaedy stand out from others. I love the build up between the two. I enjoyed the road trip with the mix tape, photos, and all the notes. It just made everything so much stronger between the two. The supporting cast is loaded with talent which includes Alec Baldwin, Susan Sarandon, Jessica Biel, Judy Greer, Bruce McGill, and Loudon Wainwright III. Alec Baldwin with Cameron Crowe’s words are pure gold. This one goes from feeling down to some hilarious humor to some nice romance, it has a little bit of everything in it. It really shows off Kentucky also as the main location. It has solid production and a soundtrack that fits Elizabethtown like a glove. The replay value is good here and it’s one that you want to revisit often. RECOMMENDED!!!!Let’s talk about the high definition presentation from Paramount Pictures! This 1080p (1.85:1) transfer is a brand new 4K restoration supervised by director Cameron Crowe. This is a massive improvement over the all past home video releases and it’s the best it’s ever looked so far. The English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track is also an upgrade compared to the older versions. The music shines here with the score and soundtrack having a nice boost to it. All of the dialogue is crystal clear here. It has English and English SDH subtitles. This is a solid technical release for a catalog title from Paramount Pictures.Let’s discuss the special features from Paramount Pictures! “Filmmaker Focus: Cameron Crowe on Elizabethtown” is a brand new exclusive little over 6 minute interview with director Cameron Crowe. He said that he made this movie for his father and discovering his southern family roots. He chats about how personal this project was. He talks about lead actor Orlando Bloom. He brings up all the famous locations and spots shown during the road trip. He mentions that this one really hits hard and personal for fans of it that’s why they love it so much because it connects to them. It has almost 24 minutes of “Deleted and Extended Scenes” which includes The Shoes They Wear, A Student of Phil, Chuck Moves Back the Reception, Rusty’s Learning to Listen Part 8, Chuck and Cindy Are Less Than Pleased, It’s Only a Funeral, Hanging with Russell in Memphis, and Alternate Ending plus an introduction from director Cameron Crowe. “On the Road to Elizabethtown” is almost 14 minutes. It has interviews with director Cameron Crowe, actors Orlando Bloom, Kirsten Dunst, Susan Sarandon, and other members of the production crew. They chat about the story, locations, music, and characters. They talk about the performances and what the actors brought to their roles here. “The Music of Elizabethtown” is a little over 5 minutes. It has an interview with director Cameron Crowe. The director breaks down the music for the movie. He chats about how important it is. He talks about certain songs and artists from the soundtrack. He says some just connected with this project and it’s characters. He mentions there’s no reason to create new material for this when there’s so many unheard or underappreciated material out there right now. “Meet the Crew” is a little over 2 minutes. Video clips of various members of the production crew for the feature. “Training Wheels” is a little over 2 minutes. It has various behind the scenes footage. “Photo Gallery by Neal Preston” which includes Behind the Scenes; Mercury; Drew Baylor; Mitch, Hollie, Drew and Heather: The Baylors; Claire Colburn; Drew & Claire; Kentucky; The Memorial; The Funeral; and Road Trip. It has a few “Trailers” and “TV Spots” under the titles: Bad Day, Drew, and 30 Seconds in Elizabethtown. It also includes a really cool slipcover that folds out to the original poster & a clear case with additional photos. I really dig the unique packaging for this blu ray. This is from the newer Paramount Presents line. It actually has a digital code which is rare for this line so far. This is the first time that it’s ever been available on blu ray in the states. It’s available everywhere right now, CHECK IT OUT!!!!