Jack and Jill (Blu-ray)

Family guy, Jack Sadelstein, prepares for the annual event he always dreads--the Thanksgiving visit of his fraternal twin sister, the needy, and passive-aggressive Jill, who then refuses to leave.

February 23, 2012 8 Min Read

Review by: Matt Brighton

Plot: What’s it about?

Let’s not mince words, shall we? Out of all the films that were released last year, Adam Sandler’s Jack and Jill was widely considered to be the worst of them. As in the lowest of the low. In three days (as of this writing) the 2012 Academy Awards are going to air and will showcase the best that the previous year in films had to offer. While this film won’t be mentioned there, except perhaps in jest, it might do well the night before at the Razzies. And after checking the official “Razzies” site, I see that this movie is an 11/10 favorite to win “Worst Picture of the Year.” Keep your fingers crossed! Ok, all kidding aside I knew what I was getting into when I requested this movie from Sony. It’s an Adam Sandler movie and while they’re more hit and miss these days, he’s never been what you’d call a “critical darling.” That’s not to say that he can’t act. Because he can. But Sandler just has it in him to do movies he wants to do and as he ages, his films seem to have more of a family facet to them. Yes, fart jokes and odd cameos still persevere, but again – consider the source.

Let’s end the suffering. Jack (Adam Sandler) is a successful advertising executive that needs to keep his biggest account, Dunkin’ Donuts (product placement, another staple of an Adam Sandler movie). They want to create a new drink called the “Dunkachino” and want actor Al Pacino to star in the commercial. Jack knows the odds of this happening are slim to none and envisions the worst case scenario. Add to this that Jack’s twin sister, Jill (also Adam Sandler) is coming into town for her annual Thanksgiving visit. As we might expect, Jack and Jill don’t really get along. Jill arrives, causes some chaos and decides to extend her visit much to the dismay of Jack. But as fate would have it, Jill catches the eye of…wait for it…Al Pacino (playing himself, obviously). Al does his best to court Jill but she wants nothing to do with him. Naturally it comes down to a choice of morals as Pacino says he’ll do the Dunkin’ Donuts commercial if he can have Jill. Will Jack choose to keep the big account or stay loyal to his twin sister?

I think I’ve seen just about every Adam Sandler movie that’s been made and I’ve actually enjoyed most of them. Sandler’s a far cry from the actor he was back in the mid 90’s with such hits like Billy Madison, Happy Gilmore and Bulletproof, but he’s still Adam Sandler. Directed by Dennis Dugan, who’s helmed some of Sandler’s bigger hits, there’s really nothing new to expect here. The cast is full of the usual suspects except missing is Rob Schneider (if you’re paying attention, there’s actually a joke in the movie about it). Katie Holmes has the unfortunate job of being Sandler’s wife and offers really nothing to the film. This begs the question: is this movie really as bad as everyone says it is? Truthfully, yes. I actually laughed out loud a few times, but then again I knew what I was getting into when I put the disc in the player. For those that are expecting to be entertained, there are certainly other choices and for those that are die-hard Sandler fans – there are other choices there as well.

Video: How does it look?

Say what you will about the film itself, but Jack and Jill looks pretty impressive on Blu-ray. The 1.85:1 AVC HD image is so rich and vibrant, it was hard to really find anything wrong with the image. Colors are strong, contrast is perfect and black levels are fine as well. It’s kind of nice to see more films being shown in a more flat format that fills up the screen, too. Detail is consistent with what we’d expect from a day and date release from a major studio. I found myself looking at the ever-increasing amount of wrinkles on Sandler’s forehead and counting the grey hairs in his head. It’s a shame that such a nice-looking transfer is somewhat wasted on a movie like this.

Audio: How does it sound?

Comedies aren’t usually known for their robust soundtracks and this is no exception. Though it contains a DTS HD Master Audio mix, I really can’t remember too many (if any) instances that stood out. Dialogue, of course, is the heart and soul of the mix and I found nothing really wrong with the way it sounded. Al Pacino’s booming voice takes command in whatever scene he’s in and Jill’s voice is consistent with any female character that Sandler has done over the years (listen to some of his old CD’s and you’ll know what I’m talking about). There are some surround effects that come into play here and there as well.

Supplements: What are the extras?

There are a few different versions of this movie out on DVD and Blu-ray, this is the two-disc Blu-ray reviewed here. We don’t get a lot of substance to the supplements offered, but then again I wasn’t expecting to. Starting out with some deleted scenes, we get a baker’s dozen to choose from that range from extended versions of scenes already in the film or some with “Jill” in her underwear. “Laughing is Contagious” is nothing but a blooper reel and “Look Who Stopped By” is a montage of all the celebrities who were in the film. Even I missed a few. “Boys Will Be Girls” shows how Sandler became a woman and Katie Holmes dishes on how she was able to better relate to him. Uh, ok Katie – whatever you say. Moving onto the Blu-ray exclusives we find “Stomach Ache” in which they follow Regis Philbin around the set. Also, in what’s essentially an extended commercial, “Don’t Call it a Boat – Royal Caribbean” showcases the new, largest boat in the world that they used on the film. Is it wrong if I now feel the urge to watch Titanic? There’s a second disc that contains a Blu-ray of the film and an UltraViolet copy to boot.

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