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Herbert Ross
Steve Martin, Rick Moranis, Joan Cusack
Nora Ephron
An uptight FBI agent must protect a larger than life mobster with a heart of gold, currently under witness protection in the suburbs.
Rated PG-13.

Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
English DTS-HD MA 2.0
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 95 min.
Price: $21.99
Release Date: 8/22/2017

• Trailer


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My Blue Heaven [Blu-Ray] (1990)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (August 29, 2017)

In 1990, a modest bevy of gangster movies hit the screens. GoodFellas ended up as a classic, while Godfather Part III managed a decent public profile, albeit one that seems less than stellar now.

And then thereís My Blue Heaven. Not only did it hit screens prior to the other two Ė it debuted in August, while the other two arrived in the fall Ė but also it offered the only comedy of the bunch.

Heaven largely seems to be forgotten by audiences even though it boasted a pretty good array of talent. Written by Nora Ephron, directed by Herbert Ross and starring Steve Martin and Rick Moranis, the movie fizzled at the box office and vanished quickly.

I know that I didnít much care for Heaven back in 1990, but I felt curious to give it a try 27 years later. Mobster Vinnie Antonelli (Martin) decides to rat out his colleagues, and as part of his deal, he and his wife Linda (Deborah Rush) go into the Witness Protection Program.

FBI Agent Barney Coopersmith (Moranis) receives the assignment to assist the Antonellis, and he soon winds up with more than he anticipated. Vinnie wants to do what Vinnie wants to do, so Barney struggles to wrangle his loose cannon client.

As I noted earlier, Heaven comes with a strong array of talent. In addition to the participants I mentioned earlier, the film includes actors Joan Cusack, Daniel Stern, Melanie Mayron, Bill Irwin, Carol Kane and William Hickey.

What with all these folks under the hood, how could Heaven flop? I donít know, but flop it does, as the film provides a relentlessly bland, forgettable experience.

On the surface, Heaven comes ripe for humor. A comedic look at a New York gangster stuck in suburbia boasts potential, and with Martin, Moranis and the others involved, hilarity seems inevitable.

Sadly, next to no laughs actually materialize here, as Heaven presents a loose, rambling tale. Its modest plot exists as nothing more than an excuse for various comedic situations, virtually none of which amuse.

To my surprise, the actors fail to add spark to the proceedings. The usually reliable Martin plays Vinnie like a Saturday Night Live character, and not one that succeeds. He lets his silly wig and overdone accent act for him, with little comedy along the way.

Moranis seems underused as the straight man. Moranis boasted a ton of talent, but he doesnít get the right part here, as he underplays Barney so severely that any potential laughs wither on the vine.

Even at 95 minutes, Heaven becomes an endurance test, as it drags and drags. Little entertainment arises in this dull comedy.

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

My Blue Heaven appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This was a largely positive presentation.

Sharpness worked fine. Interiors tended to seem a little soft, but in general, delineation seemed fine, with good accuracy most of the time. I saw no issues with jagged edges or shimmering, and edge haloes and print flaws remained absent.

With a natural palette, the movie presented fairly solid hues. While I canít claim the colors jumped off the screen, they seemed well-rendered overall.

Blacks seemed deep and dark, and shadows displayed nice smoothness and detail. Though the movie showed its age, it offered a pleasing image.

As for the filmís DTS-HD MA 2.0 soundtrack, it worked fine for its vintage. Given the movieís ambitions, the mix didnít shoot for much, but it added a little zest to the proceedings.

Music showed good stereo presence, and the various channels contributed reasonable engagement to the side and rear. Nothing excelled, but the soundscape gave us a bit of breadth.

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 was never a memorable track, but it worked for the story.

How did the Blu-ray compare to the DVD version? Audio showed a little more zest, but visuals offered the most obvious improvements, as the Blu-ray looked much tighter, cleaner and more film-like.

In terms of extras, Heaven comes with a trailer Ė and thatís all she wrote! At least that offers a step up over the DVD, as it included absolutely nothing.

With a fun premise, an excellent cast and noteworthy talent behind the camera, My Blue Heaven seemed to bring a ďcanít missĒ comedic proposition. Unfortunately, the end result sputters badly and offers a sluggish, dull film with nary a laugh to be found. The Blu-ray provides good picture and adequate audio but it skimps of bonus materials. Heaven winds up as a forgettable flick.

To rate this film, visit the DVD review of MY BLUE HEAVEN

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