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Eric Champnella
Siena Agudong, Alex Morgan, Jim Klock
Writing Credits:
Eric Champnella

After a head injury, teenager Reagan believes that her Alex Morgan poster comes to life.

Rated PG

Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
French Dolby 5.1
Latin Spanish Dolby 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 85 min.
Price: $24.98
Release Date: 6/19/2018

• “Aspire to Inspire” Featurette
• “Getting to Know Alex Morgan” Featurette
• “Soccer, Script to Set” Featurette
• Outtake
• DVD Copy


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Alex & Me [Blu-Ray] (2018)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (July 8, 2018)

In the same vein as cinematic classics like 2012’s Thunderstruck, 2018’s Alex & Me mixes sports and fantasy. Instead of basketball, though, this one digs into the world of soccer.

Teenager Reagan Wills (Siena Agudong) aspires to play soccer on the highest level, but she finds herself overshadowed in her own household due to the advanced (American) football skills displayed by older brother Logan (Matt Cornett). When Reagan doesn’t make a top team, she becomes humiliated by rival Claire (Jessica Treska) and ready to give up on the game she loves.

An accident changes this. When Reagan falls and hits her head, she believes her poster of superstar Alex Morgan (herself) comes to life. Reagan uses her connection with her imaginary friend to overcome various odds.

Would any adult in his or her right mind go into a product like Alex with any form of high expectations? Heck no – I fully recognize that films like this shoot for a tween audience and should be judged in that light.

This doesn’t mean all rules of acceptable filmmaking need to go out the window, though. Even when a movie gets made for kids, it should still hold up as reasonably competent piece of work.

Alex falls short of all those goals. Amateurish and predictable, the film lacks any form of creativity or inspiration.

Essentially it feels like those behind Alex came up with the main “soccer star comes to life” concept and didn’t bother to go beyond that. Oh, Alex delivers the usual inspirational message via its Bad News Bears bent, but it doesn’t go anywhere enjoyable.

Some of this stems from the insanely predictable nature of the story, as we can see every development miles in advance. The one-dimensional nature of the characters doesn’t help, as they feel just as easy to anticipate as the basic narrative.

Amateurish execution adds to the movie’s problems, especially in regard to performances. I don’t mind so much that Morgan can’t act – and she can’t – but the professionals in the cast lack talent as well.

This applies strongly to Agudong, who never gives us much as our lead. She varies between plucky and pouty, without much to embellish her character.

Maybe a more talented crew could’ve made something enjoyable out of Alex & Me. Unfortunately, those involved lack the skill to turn it into anything other than cheap video product.

The Disc Grades: Picture C/ Audio B-/ Bonus D+

Alex & Me appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.78:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. The movie came with a surprisingly dull image.

Sharpness took a moderate hit, as a lot of the film seemed mildly soft. Though most of it displayed reasonable to good delineation, it could demonstrate mediocre delineation more often than expected.

No issues with jagged edges or shimmering occurred, and I saw no edge haloes. Print flaws also failed to mar the proceedings.

Like sharpness, colors tended to appear flat. The movie went with a fairly natural palette that leaned toward the pale side of the street and failed to deliver vivid hues.

Blacks were reasonably dark, while shadows showed acceptable delineation. This turned into a wholly mediocre presentation.

Though not special, at least the film’s DTS-HD MA 5.1 offered more consistency. The soundscape favored music, as the score brought out a good sense of stereo presence that also spread to the surrounds in a moderate manner.

Effects boasted less involvement, but they gave us decent involvement at times. This mainly impacted soccer games and a few fantasy beats, so don’t expect a lot of activity.

Audio quality appeared satisfactory, with speech that came across as natural and distinctive. Music seemed full and rich, with nice low-end as well.

Though effects didn’t have a lot to do, they showed accurate reproduction and clarity. The movie offered adequate audio.

Minor extras flesh out the package, and we start with a featurette called Aspire to Inspire. It runs five minutes, 37 seconds and offers notes from writer/director Eric Champnella, producers Mike Karz and William Bindley, and actors Alex Morgan, Siena Agudong and Jim Klock.

As implied by the title, “Aspire” tells us we’ll achieve our goals if we work hard. Nothing more interesting than that occurs.

During the four-minute, 15-second Getting to Know Alex Morgan, we hear from Morgan, Agudong, Champnella, and Karz. Essentially this tells us that Morgan is terrific. Yawn.

Finally, Soccer, Script to Set: A Playbook on Alex & Me fills nine minutes, seven seconds and delivers material from Champnella, Morgan, Agudong, Bindley, and actors Chuti Tiu and Matt Cornett. “Playbook” brings us notes from the shoot, with an emphasis on how great everything and everyone was. It becomes another banal piece.

An Outtake goes for 45 seconds and shows a jokey version of a scene in which Reagan’s dad orders her to get into the car. It offers mild amusement.

A second disc provides a DVD copy of Alex. It includes the same extras as the Blu-ray.

A straight to video product with low production values and no real strengths, Alex & Me flops. It relies on its fantasy concept to carry it but the end result fizzles. The Blu-ray offers mediocre visuals and audio along with minor supplements. The film’s tween audience can do better than this cheap nonsense.

Viewer Film Ratings: 1 Stars Number of Votes: 1
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