Pretty in Pink appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This became a fairly good representation of a dated source.
Sharpness varied but usually seemed well-depicted. Interiors could lean a bit soft, but the majority of the flick brought nice delineation and accuracy.
I saw no signs of jagged edges or moiré effects. Edge haloes and print flaws created no concerns.
Because much of the movie came with ample grain, I didn’t suspect much noise reduction – except perhaps during club shots. These low-light elements tended to come across as softer and less grainy than much of the rest of the film, so we might’ve gotten some noise reduction. Still, the presentation showed enough grain in general that any potential noise reduction was infrequent and not egregious, as even those club elements presented some grain.
Colors varied but usually appeared fairly bright and vivid. Those club scenes looked a bit muddy, but they remained the exception to the rule, as most of the hues felt pretty lively.
Blacks mostly looked pretty deep – except for those problematic club interiors – and shadows followed the same pattern. Despite some minor issues, this largely felt like a quality presentation.
Given its focus on characters, the film’s DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack became decent and not much more. The forward spectrum dominated and showed some decent stereo imaging.
The music spread cleanly across the front speakers, and I also heard occasional use of discrete effects. These panned relatively well across the channels, and the forward audio seemed cleanly integrated.
The surrounds bolstered the music and added some effects as well. Those brought modest reinforcement of environmental material, so they didn’t contribute a lot, but they gave us a bit of involvement.
Audio quality showed its age but seemed more than adequate. Though lines occasionally felt a little reedy, they always remained intelligible and they lacked prominent issues like edginess.
Music varied on the source – mainly due to different production styles for the songs – but these components mostly seemed lively and full. Though effects played a modest role, they appeared accurate and without overt flaws. While not a memorable soundtrack, this became a perfectly acceptable mix for a 34-year-old comedy/drama.
How did the Blu-ray compare to the special edition from 2006? The lossless audio felt more involving and concise, so even with the limitations of the source, the DTS-HD MA track became superior.
I felt the same about visuals, as despite the movie’s inherent “80s look”, the Blu-ray became a clear improvement. The BD seemed more accurate and showed stronger colors and cleanliness. Expect a good step in both visual and auditory quality from the Blu-ray.
We get a mix of old and new extras here. In the “new” category comes Filmmaker Focus, a seven-minute, 38-second chat with director Howard Deutch.
Here we learn about how he got the movie as well as working with John Hughes and the cast, reactions to the film and the alternate ending. Deutch brings some decent notes but “Focus” seems too short to tell us much.
A look at deleted material shows up via The Lost Dance: The Original Ending (12:15). It includes remarks from Deutch, producer Lauren Shuler Donner and actors Andrew McCarthy, Jon Cryer, Molly Ringwald and Annie Potts.
We hear about the nature of the original ending and learn about its shoot along why the filmmakers dropped it. We also get remarks about the reshoot for the ending actually used in the film.
I’d have liked to see the actual footage of the cut ending, but we find out so much about it that we don’t lose much by not watching it. “Dance” covers the subject well.
In addition to the film’s trailer, we find an isolated score. It presents the movie’s music via a lossy Dolby Stereo track. It’s a decent bonus but I’d like it more if it came in a lossless version.
Note that the Blu-ray loses a lot of extras from the 2006 Collector’s Edition. That’s typical for the 2020 “Paramount Presents” line of Blu-rays, and it stinks. The “Paramount Presents” line could and should become the definitive versions of these films, but the absence of so many existing supplements prevents that.
In the 1980s, John Hughes milked teen drama for all it was worth, but that doesn’t mean he did so with consistent success. As someone who went to high school in that era, I should enjoy this nonsense if just due to my memories, but Pretty in Pink seems so overwrought and cheesy that I find it tough to take. The Blu-ray offers dated but generally good picture and audio but it skimps on bonus materials. For the film presentation, fans will want the Blu-ray, but they’ll need to keep the old DVD to enjoy most of the existing supplements.
To rate this film visit the DVD review of PRETTY IN PINK