Bringing Down The House Blu-ray Review
It is a long running joke in our household that I will drop whatever I’m doing to watch a Queen Latifah movie if it is on TV. Probably because my husband was forced to sit through LAST HOLIDAY on more than one occasion and I admitted that JUST WRIGHT might be a guilty pleasure. Therefore, by association, I am teased mercilessly whenever a Queen Latifah flick comes on by my hilarious husband. Imagine my delight when the chance came to watch BRINGING DOWN THE HOUSE on blu-ray! This could be the ultimate guilty pleasure and secure my standing as a pseudo-diehard Queen Latifah fan, making it the one and only time my husband will be correct. But this film is no guilty pleasure. In fact, I felt guilty for wasting my time watching this offensively non-funny film.
In BRINGING DOWN THE HOUSE, workaholic tax attorney and divorced dad, Peter Sanderson (the one and only Steve Martin), has developed a pen-pal relationship with a woman he met in a chat room. They arrange to meet at Peter’s house and boy-oh-boy is Peter surprised when he opens his door to find Charlene (Queen Latifah) is not the willowy blonde woman in the forefront of the photo he received, rather a full-figured black woman who was in the background of the very same picture. Rushing Charlene out of his house before his sweet but overly racist neighbor, Mrs. Kline (Betty White) sees and reports this incident to her brother who just so happens to be Peter’s uptight boss. Charlene blackmails and harasses Peter until he agrees to look at her case to help clear her good name.
Through a series of hijinks Charlene becomes a welcome addition to Peter’s hum-drum life. She helps his son read, beats up a guy who attempts to sleep with his wild-teen daughter, beats up Peter’s snooty ex-sister-in-law and plays the part of the maid whenever the client Peter is wooing comes over for dinner. What’s not to love about this odd couple duo? Oh, that’s right. Everything. This film is horribly written, creating offensive stereo-types, lack luster characters and fails to pull the pieces together to create a fraction of chemistry. Crossing so many lines that did not need to be crossed in this film, I actually did a spit take when I heard Joan Plowright’s character sing the song her maid sang to her when she was younger. This song actually has the phrase “Mama, is master going to sell us tomorrow?” repeatedly throughout the chorus.
There are little to no redeeming qualities to this film. Steve Martin does a decent job delivering some of his lines in a manner you grow to expect from the funnyman. But those moments were so few and far between, mixed with the rest of the garbage that made up this picture, that I had to really sit and think if he made me laugh or not. Queen Latifah is all over the place in this picture; failing to be consistent with the persona she gave her character. This movie is a tragedy. With the talent that is mixed into this film, they could have done something great. Instead they produced one of the worst movies I’ve ever seen.
Video (2.39:1): BRINGING DOWN THE HOUSE’s video had standard picture and clarity for a movie made in the past decade.
Audio (DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1): Just like the video, the audio was what you would expect in the 2003 released BRINGING DOWN THE HOUSE. Nothing to write home about, but no complaints either.
Breaking Down BRINGING DOWN THE HOUSE (16:33): This making of featurette highlights interviews with everyone involved in the picture. As with most making of segments, everyone praises everyone’s work and what they contributed to the movie.
The godfather of hop (2:57): This is a mockumentary highlighting Eugene Levy as the ‘godfather of hop’ because in Canada they don’t have hip-hop, just ‘hop’.
“Better Than The Rest” Music Video by Queen Latifah (3:44): This music video features clips from BRINGING DOWN THE HOUSE and a house party with Queen Latifah and Eugene Levy.
Deleted Scenes (4:10): There were four deleted scenes that were wisely cut as they could not help save this wreck of a flick.
Gag Reel (4:00): What is with films putting alleged gag reels on their Blu-rays that are the opposite of funny? This is one of the worst gag reels and in no way should have been titled as such.