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DVD Review: The 40-Year-Old Virgin (Blu-ray)
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WordSlinger   |  
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The 40-Year-Old Virgin [Blu-ray]The 40-Year-Old Virgin
Blu-Ray Edition – Unrated
Directed by Judd Apatow
Starring Steve Carell, Catherine Keener, Paul Rudd, Seth Rogen, Romany Malco
Universal Studios Home Entertainment
Release Date: September 30, 2008

The 40-Year-Old Virgin is one of the best “Frat Pack” films out there. Steve Carell really stole the spotlight and showed he can be a leading man. The film also showcases one of Paul Rudd‘s best characters and gave us our first real look at Seth Rogen‘s comedic talents. Even with an enormous amount of low-brow humor, the film still manages to connect with real people facing real relationship issues. Despite the implication of the title, the film does not brand virginity as the worst complication in an adult relationship.

The film stars Carell as the title virgin, who works at a large electronics store and is basically a loner. He’s managed to keep this secret all these years, but when his co-workers (Rogen, Rudd, and several other hilarious supporting roles) find out he’s never been with a woman, they make it their mission to get him laid.

This movie doesn’t really have anything that would be showcased in high-definition. Nevertheless, Universal has not failed yet to deliver an amazing transfer for Blu-Ray. The picture really pops off the screen in full 1080p (Bonus features are in 480i/p). The disc includes both the theatrical and unrated versions of the film, with the unrated version running an impressive 16 minutes longer than the original. I say impressive because most “unrated” cuts of films seem to be 2-3 minutes longer and generally include little more than added nudity/gore.

For those with a good sound setup, the film has a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track in English, as well as DTS 5.1 tracks in Spanish and French. (Bonus features are English only and Dolby Digital 5.1 and 2.0).
As with other Universal Blu-Rays, the pop-up menu makes use of the picture-in-picture function to access bonus materials that can play simultaneously with the film.

The disc is overflowing with bonus materials as well, though not in high-definition. some scenes have left such an impression on fans, there was apparently a need to showcase them further. In addition to the usual deleted scenes, special features include “You Know How I know You’re Gay?” which is exactly what it sounds like: an extremely extended version of the Rudd/Rogen argument. Similar extended scenes include “Date-O-Rama,” an extended speed dating sequence, and “Line-O-Rama,” an extended compilation of some of the more shocking and possibly offensive jokes that did not make it into the finished film.

Sound good? It keeps going. Audio commentary from director and Frat Pack ringleader Judd Apatow and the cast, cast auditions, rehearsals, gag real, documentary on the waxing scene, 1970’s Sex Ed Film, and the Reel Comedy Roundtable, a Comedy Central special featuring Apatow and crew sitting around talking about the movie. If only every studio put this much effort into their Blu-Ray releases, there would be no room for me to nitpick in these reviews.

Final Score:
Movie: A
Picture Quality: A
Sound Quality: A
Bonus Features: A+

This is the best Blu-Ray I have reviewed to date. Obviously if you didn’t like the movie you will not like it in high-def, but if you enjoyed it, you will certainly appreciate the phenomenal treatment it has been given on Blu-Ray.

4 Comments »

  1. Thanks for the review but other than the resolution, it seems not entirely accurate to say that there is anything unique about the blu-ray edition or that the studio has put any additional effort into this blu-ray version. Like so many blu-ray dvds out there, they have simply taken the extras from the standard dvd ‘unrated’ edition and transferred onto a blu-ray disc. With meagre offerings like this, it is no surprise that blu-ray is simply failing to gain any interest with a lot of movie fans.

    Comment by Kell — November 1, 2008 @ 8:25 am

  2. I don’t know if I need to rush to get this on blu-ray, but I do love this film a lot.
    Great review.

    Comment by Jerry — November 1, 2008 @ 11:27 am

  3. @kell

    True, but in all fairness, I don’t know anyone who buys movies just for the extra features. Blu-Ray is really just being marketed to home theater junkies with Hi-Def TVs and good sound setups, and in that aspect this disc is really good. The picture and sound quality are phenomenal, and if you have the right equipment to take advantage of that, Blu-Ray is pretty incredible. PLus, depending on who you ask, some industry analysts see Blu-Ray catching on faster than DVD did a decade ago. Sure, it may never replace DVD the same way DVD did VHS, but it is definitely not going away anytime soon.

    Comment by WordSlinger — November 1, 2008 @ 4:47 pm

  4. @WordSlinger

    Completely agree – I buy movies for the movie first, not for the extras. But if I had to choose between a dvd and a blu-ray of this movie, both with the same extras, but one with better quality video and audio, i’ll be going for the cheaper option, simply because dvd quality video and audio is good enough for me, especially for a comedy. I look at the price of a standard dvd, compare it to a blu-ray, and I just can’t picture myself justifying the extra expense.

    Comment by Kell — November 2, 2008 @ 8:50 am

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