Annie: 30th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray Review
Musicals are a funny film genre; usually you either love a particular musical or can’t stand it. A lot of the classical musicals have a hard time standing the test of time and unless you saw the movie at a young age and have a sweet spot for it, you may end up watching the film later in life and be bored to tears. Such was the case with ANNIE. I vividly remember watching it when I was six or seven years-old, and even though I thought it was alright it was never one of my favorites films. Upon a recent re-watching I found myself wondering when it was going to end and was a little appalled at the cheesiness that was running rampant throughout the movie. Even though I know ANNIE is a classic and I’m glad I saw it both back then and now, I think it will be one of those films that sits on my shelf until my kids are old enough to understand the story. After all, I can’t have them thinking that “It’s The Hard-Knock Life” was really a Jay-Z original, they need to learn some cinematic history for heaven’s sake!
ANNIE follows the story of a young, spunky, red-headed orphan (played by Aileen Quinn) who basically wins the jackpot when she is chosen to spend a week with the billionaire Oliver Warbucks (Albert Finney) for some good PR. During their week together, the two realize how much they care for each other, but they have some obstacles to overcome including a fake pair of parents (played by Tim Curry and Bernadette Peters) who try to kidnap Annie for a big reward offered by Daddy Warbucks. Thank goodness ANNIE was a happy musical and everything turned out alright for this little orphan.
As I mentioned before, one my biggest problems with ANNIE was the cheesiness and overacting by the characters. ANNIE is based on the Broadway musical, and though many musicals have been adapted to the big screen, usually the actors in the film realize that they don’t need to overact to get their point across. Apparently this wasn’t a major concern in 1982 when ANNIE was released. There was a lot of “mugging” (which is defined as: making exaggerated faces while performing) on the part of young Aileen Quinn as well as Carol Burnett (who played Miss Hannigan the ward of the orphanage), which was so distracting that it was almost uncomfortable. It was too obvious that these two were accustomed to the stage and hadn’t made a great transition onto film.
Another problem with ANNIE is the music. Aside from “It’s The Hard-Knock Life” and “Tomorrow”, the songs didn’t really do much for me, but that’s just a personal preference. It’s very possible that I’m remembering the film wrong, but I thought that there were a lot better songs from the film.
Overall, I was a little disappointed with ANNIE. I still think it’s one of those films that everyone should see and musical lovers should probably have in their collection, but it just doesn’t seem to stand up to the test of time. Maybe my opinion will change after another ten years, but right now the outlook isn’t good.
Video: This transfer was as good as could be expected for a movie that was released 30 years ago.
Audio: The audio sounded fine for such an old transfer.
Sing-Along with Annie!: This is a sing-along where you can activate so it pops up during the film or do the songs separately.
My Hollywood Adventure with Aileen Quinn (12:03): A short featurette where we get to meet up with Aileen Quinn (who played Annie) where she discusses getting the part in the film, the wig, costumes, etc. If you are a fan this is worth watching.
Musical Performance by Play: “It’s the Hard-Knock Life” (3:21): This is a pop version of the song.
Original Trailers and TV Spots
UV Digital Copy