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I am all for anything politically incorrect, and because THE UGLY TRUTH ($40) is a fairly raunchy, politically incorrect romantic comedy, I found myself laughing at those elements on a fairly regular basis. Of course, this isn’t to say that your mileage may vary… depending on where your tastes may lie in regard to humor. The premise of THE UGLY TRUTH finds Katherine Heigl in the role of Abby Richter, the producer of a low rated local Sacramento, California morning TV show. Abby is also something of a romantic loser, who has difficulty in finding the ideal man. One evening after another disastrous first date, Abby comes home and happens on a highly rated, public access call-in TV show entitled The Ugly Truth, which is hosted by Mike Chadway (Gerard Butler). During the course of the show, Mike espouses his simplistic, cynical, but surprisingly accurate assessment of male/female relationships. Appalled by Mike’s narrow, sexist viewpoint, Abby calls in to argue with him, but he does manage to get the upper hand during their on-air conversation.

In a typical movie coincidence, Abby goes to work the following day and learns that the station management has hired Mike Chadway, with the intention of using The Ugly Truth as a regular segment to bolster the floundering morning show’s ratings. Not surprisingly, Abby is appalled by the station management’s decision, but she has little choice other than to live with it, especially after the first appearance of Mike and The Ugly Truth has the desired effect on the morning show’s ratings. To convince Abby that he is right about men and women, Mike makes her a wager… if Abby follows Mike’s lead implicitly, he will help her reel in the man of her dreams- namely, Colin Anderson (Eric Winter), the handsome orthopedic surgeon who just moved in across from her apartment. However, if Mike’s advice proves wrong, he will quit the morning show. Although every bit of Mike’s advice goes against her true nature, Abby quickly discovers she has Colin eating out of her hand… The cast of THE UGLY TRUTH also features Bree Turner, Nick Searcy, Jesse D. Goins, Cheryl Hines, John Michael Higgins, Noah Matthews, Kevin Connolly and Craig Ferguson.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment has made THE UGLY TRUTH available on Blu-ray Disc in a 2.35:1 aspect ratio presentation that has been encoded onto the disc with the AVC codec. Whatever one may think of the movie itself, there is no denying that the 1080p presentation of THE UGLY TRUTH is utterly gorgeous. Shot in a bright, glossy comedy style, THE UGLY TRUTH sports a wonderfully sharp image, which is also highly dimensional and delivers terrific levels of fine detail and texturing. Colors tend to appear warm and very vibrant, with highly attractive flesh tones. There are a few moments where the hues push towards the realm of over-saturation, but the Blu-ray handles them without a hiccup. Blacks are deep and whites are crisp. Contrast is excellent and shadow detail is never wanting. The elements from which THE UGLY TRUTH is mastered appear virtually pristine. Grain is mild, but the presentation maintains a very organic quality.

THE UGLY TRUTH is presented on Blu-ray Disc with a 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. In terms of sound design, there are no surprises here. This is a fairly standard romantic comedy mix, with most of the sound localized front and center. The outlying channels do occasionally engage for active sound effect placement, but there is very little going on beyond environmental sounds, general ambience and musical fill. That said, I was still impressed by the lossless encode for what it did for the film’s music, which sonically dynamic and totally full of life. Pop tunes on the track like Natasha Bedingfield’s Pocketful Of Sunshine sound just amazing. The bass channel has little to do, other than bolster the terrific sounding music. Voices have a warm, natural quality, plus the film’s dialogue is always completely understandable. French and Portuguese 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio soundtracks are also encoded onto the disc, as is a Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 channel track. Subtitles are available in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese.

Full motion video, animation and sound serve to enhance the interactive menus. Through the menus, one has access to standard scene selection and set up features, as well as the extras. Starting things off is a Select Scenes Audio Commentary with director Robert Luketic and producer Gary Lucchesi. Featurettes and other programs include the following: The Truth Is Ugly: Capturing The Male And Female Point Of View (thirteen minutes) and The Art Of Laughter: A Making Of Hilarious Proportions (sixteen minutes). Deleted Scenes, an Alternate Ending, a Blooper Reel and Bonus Trailers close out the standard extras. THE UGLY TRUTH is also BD-Live enabled (requires a Profile 2.0 player). Sony’s MovieIQ feature is available through BD-Live, which provides the viewer access to a continuously updated database of additional information about the film, its cast, crew and soundtrack, as well as other trivia. A Digital Copy of the film is also provided.

I had fun watching THE UGLY TRUTH and laughed quite a bit at its raunchy humor. The Blu-ray looks and sounds amazing. If you are even remotely interested in checking out THE UGLY TRUTH, do yourself a big favor and check it out on Blu-ray.



The Ugly Truth [Blu-ray] (2009)


DVD & Blu-rayDisc reviews are Copyright 2009 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.



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