Plot: What’s it about?
In my “day job” I was on a call in which someone mentioned the year 1997. I said “Hey, 1997 was a great year.” It was. I was in my senior year of college and things were looking swell. There was another person on the call who said “I wasn’t even born yet.” It didn’t really make my day, but hey – that’s the nature of the world. I mention this because when requesting this from Warner, I vaguely remember the original House Party from the early 90’s. I remember not being too impressed and I never really did get the deal with Kid and Play. I honestly couldn’t name a hit song t hey had. Nostalgic looks back aside, we flash forward a few decades and now we’ve got a remake. Yes, someone sat down and was able to convince a producer to remake House Party (and as it turns out, that person was none other than basketball great LeBron James). Here’s the result.
Best friends Damon (Tosin Cole) and Kevin (Jacob Latimore) are struggling to make it a party promoters while working as house cleaners during the day. They’re both pushing 30, but they’re performance at their day job is such that they’re both fired. It so happens that they’re working at a mansion owned by LeBron James (who also served as the film’s producer). Damon won’t be able to make rent and he’s set to be evicted by his aunt. Kevin, on the other hand, needs to earn some money to pay for his daughter’s expensive pre-school, otherwise the mother gets full custody. With Lebron James at a retreat out of the country and not set to be back for another week, Kevin and Damon decide to throw a, you guessed it, house party and will hopefully rake in the cash with their cover charges. All is well?
The film isn’t a total waste of time. There are some laugh out loud moments, but by and large we all know how things will turn out right after the opening credits. This is now the second time that LeBron James has used his clout to get a 90’s movie made. The other being Space Jam, though I’ll say that I preferred the original with Michael Jordan. There are several parallels between this and the 1990 version, though the biggest difference would be the age. The party guests are in their late 20’s as opposed to high school students. There’s…not a lot else to say. This reboot didn’t exactly light up the box office and I doubt that this version will inspire a few sequels like the original did. Then again, stranger things have happened.
Video: How’s it look?
Indicative of anything and everything we’d expect from a new-to-the-format Blu-ray, House Party does – admittedly – look pretty darn good. The 1.85:1 AVC HD encode leaves very little to the imagination with its stunning and impressive detail, strong contrast and bright, bold colors. Interior shots are warm and well-lit and with a title like House Party, there aren’t a lot of broad, sweeping visuals to speak of. Nevertheless, if this movie is up your alley, know that it looks very smart indeed.
Audio: How’s it sound?
I’m sure there are several folks out there who have their fingers crossed for a Dolby Atmos soundtrack. Sorry, folks. However, the included DTS HD Master Audio track isn’t without some bright spots. Bass thumps, vocals are pure and crisp and surrounds are a lot more active than I’d have thought. There’s no substitute for the “real thing” of course, but this mix on the Blu-ray will make you feel like you were invited.
Supplements: What are the extras?
If there are any supplements on this disc, I wasn’t able to find them. We’ll go with “this disc has no supplements.”
The Bottom Line
Another example of “why did they remake this?” we’ve got…this. It’s not without a few funny moments, but whoever green lit this for a new generation should probably look for a new job. I think I only saw the original 1990 version once and wasn’t too impressed. Then again that film generated two sequels. Perhaps Warner/New Line are thinking and hoping that history will repeat itself?