Trainwreck Blu-ray Review
The problem that I have with most rom-coms is that the characters aren’t relatable. Of course most of them usually involve the man being the idiot because he can’t commit for whatever reason, followed by him inevitably realizing the error of his ways when the opposite sex, who’s chasing after him, attempts to leave him. Some of these movies are more egregious than others, but in general, I find the mainstream genre insufferable. I get the distinct feeling that Amy Schumer and Judd Apatow share this same sentiment with me.
In TRAINWRECK, the role of the bumbling doofus, and the well-to-do counterpart, are reversed. Amy Schumer plays Amy, a drunk, pot smoking, immature woman that believes a monogamous lifestyle is for fools. She’s kind of like a stereotypical college frat boy. Bill Hader is Aaron, a sports doctor that is relatively conservative in his lifestyle. He comes off as the casual, but provides a spunky counterbalance to Amy’s crassness. Hader feels like an innocent young girl looking to get her feet wet. Like I said, the roles have been switched.
TRAINWRECK spends a little bit too much time setting up that Amy has problems with commitment and with the idea of settling down. So when she meets Aaron, who’s interested in dating her, and interesting in spending more than one night with her, she predictably freaks out. What makes TRAINWRECK captivating throughout though is the metamorphosis of person we wouldn’t generally root for, but oddly enough, we do. A lot of the relatability comes from the honest portrayal by Schumer and Hader. They’re able to sell to the audience that Aaron, despite being able to do better, only has one desire in his heart, and that’s Amy.
Like most Apatow productions, a conga line of cameos arrive to help provide throwaway jokes, but some aren’t just cheap chuckles. LeBron James plays Aaron’s best friend and actually does a really good job. He plays off of Hader’s humor when need be and in a pair of scenes, provide an emotional backbone to Aaron and Amy. John Cena is in TRAINWRECK and comes as a pleasant surprise early on in the film as one of the various men that Amy sleeps around with, without telling him they’re not really dating.
TRAINWRECK’s biggest weaknesses are the same ones that inhabit all rom-coms, it’s too predictable. It doesn’t help that it takes a very long time to get to all of its logical climaxes and turns. Of course its biggest strength helps me forgive these glaring problems more than I typically would. Schumer’s character, while highly unlikeable in a lot of instances, does what most of the buffoons in these movies can’t do, realize the error of their ways, ask for help, ask for forgiveness, and right the wrongs they’ve made instead of letting everything nauseously fall neatly into their lap.
Video: (1080p Widescreen 2:39:1) The video quality on this blu-ray is crystal clear. The vibrant colors the nightlife and the big city are well represented on the picture transition.
Audio: (English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1) The hustle and bustle of the city comes through clearly on this presentation.
Deleted Scenes (45:44): There are over a dozen deleted scenes, tallying a lengthy 45 minutes. Most of the scenes feature character interactions that add a little bit of character, but not enough to add depth to the overall plot arc. It also features some of the more comedically weak material of the movie.
Extended/Alternate Scenes (49:06): This feature, along with the previous, features dozens of scenes that were snipped. I know that comedies generally have a lot of jokes that are inevitably cut because of how much improvisation is in them, but I feel like these features highlight the need for comedic films that understand the quality of short. Once again, there is no character depth added and the jokes are a bit flat.
Secrets of the Wu (2:21): An elderly character talks with one of Wu-Tang Clan members that plays a cameo role. I really don’t know why this is a feature. Am I missing something?
The Dogwalker (4:07): There is a fake indie movie within TRAINWRECK that pops up every once and awhile. I assume its only purpose is to ridicule some indie movie trope, but regardless it’s funny. This feature is broken up into two parts.
Gag Reel (12:42): I feel like gag reels are self-explanatory, and this one is no different. It’s a funny, guilty pleasure. It’s great watching veteran actors like Colin Quinn cracking up people like Bill Hader and folks like John Cena ham it up with the likes of Amy Schumer.
Line-O-Rama (8:11): This feature is separated into two parts and highlights the multitude of zingers that our characters throw out before one eventually lands. It’s a great feature that highlights a lot of the improv work that goes into a comedy movie. This feature is broken up into two parts. The second part, ‘Steve O-Rama’ features all the zingers within an entire scene.
Directing Athletes: A Blood Sport (9:54): An interesting feature where the sports athletes talk about what it’s like to work with Apatow and in kind, Apatow discusses what it’s like to work with athletes.
Behind-the-Scenes (1:28:40): A collection of behind-the-scenes features that focus on work throughout the movie as well as individual scenes. It’s a very interesting feature, but the length of an entire movie. Luckily it’s broken up into multiple features, with some touching upon what it was like to work with individual actors.
TRAINWRECK Comedy Tour (1:17:17): Another lengthy feature that follows a tour behind selling TRAINWRECK to movie goers throughout the U.S. and Canada. It’s kind of interesting, but useless once you get down to the details of what information we learn.
Red Band Trailer
Feature Commentary with Director Judd Apatow, Writer/Star Amy Schumer and Associate Producer Kim Caramele: The commentary on this is very interesting, mainly when Schumer and Apatow discuss specific scenes. They’re very respectful of each other and their talents. TRAINWRECK is very much a collaboration between these two comedic juggernauts.