LA Story appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This was a decent but not impressive presentation.
Sharpness seemed adequate to good, though never especially strong. I suspect some of this came from the source, but the image still felt a bit less concise than I’d expect – at least on a consistent basis.
No issues with jagged edges or moiré effects occurred, and edge haloes remained absent. With a lot of grain, I didn’t suspect issues with noise reduction, and I saw no signs of print flaws.
Colors looked positive but not stellar. Mainly made up of blues and ambers, the tones failed to take advantage of the sunny LA setting, but they still showed reasonable clarity.
Blacks were fairly dark, while shadows seemed pretty smooth. Though this became a more than acceptable image, it didn’t stand out as better than that.
As for the film’s DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack, it worked fine for its vintage. Given the movie’s tale, the mix didn’t shoot for much, but it added a little zest to the proceedings, mainly due to some weather-related elements.
Music showed good stereo presence, and the various channels contributed passable engagement to the sides. Much of the flick lacked ambition, though, so don’t expect much involvement from the mix.
Audio quality also seemed fine. Speech was reasonably natural and concise, while music showed acceptable pep and clarity.
Effects brought us accurate enough material. This became a wholly mediocre track for a movie from 1991.
How did the Blu-ray compare to the DVD version? The lossless audio showed a bit superior range but given the limitations of the source, it didn’t show major improvements.
The Blu-ray’s visuals showed more obvious upgrades, as it looked cleaner and better defined, with more appealing colors. While the Blu-ray didn’t impress, it still topped the blah DVD.
A few extras appear here, and The Story of LA Story runs 12 minutes, 34 seconds. It includes notes from director Mick Jackson, producer Daniel Melnick and writer/actor Steve Martin.
“Story” looks at the film’s origins and development, sets and locations, Jackson’s approach to the project, a deleted scene, cast/performances, and other reflections. This becomes a decent mix of insights and happy talk.
The LA of LA Story features production designer Lawrence Miller and takes us to various movie locations. We find 13 segments with a total running time of 15 minutes, 24 seconds of footage.
Miller tours the different LA spots and us info about them. I like the content but not the awkward interface, as it becomes a chore to work through the material.
18 Deleted Scenes & Outtakes occupy a total of 20 minutes, 20 seconds. Some offer extensions of existing sequences, but a lot of new material shows up as well.
In particular, we get a five-minute, 28-second segment in which Harris meets with big-shot producer Harry Zell (John Lithgow), and a few more call back to Zell. Another series of scenes shows Harris’s neighbor, a boxer (Scott Bakula).
Do any of these really seem like they’d have made much of a difference in the final film? Probably not, but they do give us a much better picture of Harris’s attempts to elevate his status in showbiz.
None would’ve hurt the film. Oddly, in the “Story of LA Story featurette, Melnick claims the Zell footage didn’t make the final cut because these bits would’ve forced the film to run too long. It’s only 95 minutes – another six or seven minutes wouldn’t have padded it too much.
A 1991 EPK spans five minutes, 38 seconds and involves Martin, Melnick, and actors Marilu Henner and Victoria Tennant. We get minor basics in this promo reel.
New to the Blu-ray, O2BINLA runs 23 minutes, 58 seconds and provides the director’s thoughts about his career and how he got this gig, working with Steve Martin and his approach to the material, cast and performances, deleted scenes, locations, music, and related thoughts.
Some of this repeats from earlier programs. Still, Jackson brings some new notes to the table in this engaging chat.