Ricki and the Flash Blu-ray Review
Ever since JUNO, Diablo Cody seems to slowly be writing her way into mediocrity. She has effectively pulled a Shyamalan, appearing to only be a one hit wonder. It’s unfortunate too because her scripts manage to lure the best actors and actresses, as well as some notable directors. This time her script has drawn in the critically acclaimed Meryl Streep and the equally acclaimed director, Jonathan Demme, for a movie that seems well below their skill set.
RICKI AND THE FLASH isn’t a movie about reconciliation with family members, realizing ones failed dreams, or finding your true self after letting things fall apart, but it certainly tries to cram every one of those themes into its story to a frustrating extent. Ricki (Streep) works full time as a cashier at a grocery store, but plays in her free time with her band, Ricki and the Flash. They’re a dive bar cover band, which makes you wonder why Ricki would abandon her family in the first place and continue to be distant from them to pursue a non-existent rock and roll dream in a cover band. She’s notified that her daughter, whom she hasn’t seen in decades, is having a mental breakdown. Scraping together some of those bar tips, she gets on the red eye to lounge around at her ex-husband’s house and give bad advice to a daughter who wants nothing to do with her. She also hopes to reconnect with her other kids who are equally as uninterested in seeing how she’s doing. But can you really blame the children or feel sympathy for Ricki?
Ricki’s not a bad person, but she’s a person that seemingly couldn’t care less about her children until the direst of moments. This fact is even brought up to her the step mom that did raise her kids, but she doesn’t seem to take heed of that revelation. Thinking her daughter will be OK or just upset that she was confronted about her selfishness, Ricki goes back home, alienates the one person in her band that always has her back, and yet RICKI AND THE FLASH rewards her because…I legitimately don’t know. We’re supposed to feel bad for someone who abandons their family as we fight the urge to abandon this movie and throw the Blu-ray disc out the window. I do identify with people who pursue their dreams and give it their all to find that fame and glory they’ve imagined in their head, or at the very least, recognition by a broad audience for their talents. I’ve talked to those people, helped those people, and would gladly talk to and help those people again. Watching Ricki in a cover band pander to bar flies doesn’t make me sympathetic for her. It makes me frustrated that their kids had to be subjected to Ricki’s lack of vision when it came to a failed career without any legitimate talent.
Streep, who’s known for being able to act the hell out of any role, just isn’t believable as an aged rockstar. Of course it isn’t the acting that does her in, it’s the character itself. She’s almost too pretty and neat looking to be someone that lives off a minimum wage salary, lives in crummy apartments and dines on bar food. I’m sorry Diablo Cody, but just like Ricki’s children, I’m beginning to question your talents.
Video: (1080p Widescreen 2:39:1) The video presentation captures the smoky dive Ricki and the Flash play in just as well as the ritzy home her ex-husband lives in.
Audio: (English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1) There are way too many cover songs in this movie, but they come in clear as a bell on this blu-ray.
Deleted Scenes (7:50): Four different scenes altogether, a few are just extended scenes. None of them really shed anything new on our characters.
Getting Ready for Ricki: The Making of RICKI AND THE FLASH (10:01): This feature talks with the director, writer, actors, and other random crew members about the themes of the movie. It also talks about the music, Meryl Streep, and other behind-the-scenes randoms.
Rediscovering Rick Springfield (5:28): This feature talks about Rick Springfield’s contribution to the film as well as what it was like to work with him.
Cast Photo Gallery