New in Home Entertainment – May 3, 2011

New in Home Entertainment

May 3, 2011

The Dilemma
Rated PG-13 for mature thematic elements involving sexual content
Available on DVD and Blu-ray

Vince Vaughn and Kevin James team up with director Ron Howard in this decent little buddy comedy that stank it up at the box office earlier this year.  While the movie is pretty funny at times, and fairly well-acted, the subject matter of addiction and adultery had a tough time finding an audience.  Vaughn is fun to watch while trying to put off telling his friend and business partner James about his cheating wife until the worst possible moment.  In fact, what makes the movie funny, yet also annoying, is that Vaughn’s timing is off on everything. His character couldn’t possibly make worse decisions.  Both Vaughn and James pull off respectable performances, and Winona Ryder and Channing Tatum turn in surprisingly good work as the cheating spouse and her lover.  Meanwhile, Jennifer Connelly is given an almost wasted part and Queen Latifah is completely irritating.  I like that Ron Howard got back into comedy, but this probably wasn’t the best project for him as it wouldn’t have seen a big audience even with flawless execution and a perfect cast.  B

Gulliver’s Travels
Rated PG for brief rude humor, mild language and action
Available on DVD and Blu-ray

Jack Black is just a guy named Gulliver who works in the mail room when he finds himself on an assignment to cover travel in the Bermuda Triangle.  When his ship wrecks off the coast of Liliput, he finds himself a giant amongst the inches-high residents.  And then he goes into Jack Black mode.  What is that, in case you don’t know?  He goes nuts – singing, dancing, and making a fool of himself.  It was cute during his first couple of movies, but years later, and in this setting, I find it almost unwatchable.  Miscast here is Jason Segel as Horatio and Emily Blunt as Princess Mary.  I feel that this movie is just plain beneath them as actors and can be nothing but a step back in their careers.  That being said, the production values are pretty impressive with decent special effects and an impressive process for making the ginormous size of Black look almost organic.  Also, while I didn’t enjoy myself, my one-year-old couldn’t take his eyes off of the screen.  Maybe I’m just the wrong audience.  D+