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Joe Nussbaum
Aimee Teegarden, Thomas McDonell, DeVaughn Nixon, Danielle Campbell, Yin Chang, Jared Kusnitz, Nolan Sotillo
Writing Credits:
Katie Wech

At Prom, every couple has a story and no two are exactly alike. For Nova Prescott (Aimee Teegarden), it's a classic tale of opposites attracting when she finds herself drawn to the guy (Thomas McDonell) who gets in the way of her perfect prom. Share the laughter and the drama as secrets are brought to light, seemingly steady relationships unravel and new romance catches fire. Get ready for this hilariously heartfelt date with destiny featuring a hot ensemble cast of rising young stars and cool bonus features. There are hundreds of nights in high school, but there's only one Prom.

Box Office:
$8 million.
Opening Weekend
$4.712 million on 2730 screens.
Domestic Gross
$10.019 million.

Rated PG

Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
English Dolby Digital 2.0 Descriptive Video Service
French Dolby Digital 5.1
Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 104 min.
Price: $39.99
Release Date: 8/30/2011

• “Last Chance Lloyd” Short
• “Putting on Prom” Featurette
• Bloopers
• Deleted Scenes
• Music Videos
• Previews
• DVD Copy


Panasonic 50" TH-50PZ77U 1080p Plasma Monitor; Sony STR-DG1200 7.1 Channel Receiver; Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player using HDMI outputs; Michael Green Revolution Cinema 6i Speakers (all five); Kenwood 1050SW 150-watt Subwoofer.


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Prom [Blu-Ray] (2011)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (August 29, 2011)

Why in the world would a 44-year-old man watch a movie called Prom? Simple logistics. This site always posts one “featured title” per week, and as I write this on the evening of Friday, August 26, 2011, I’ve not received anything else that debuts next Tuesday.

So back to high school I go with 2011’s Prom! We visit Brookside High and its teen inhabitants, with a focus on Nova Prescott (Aimee Teagarden), one of the school’s most popular and accomplished students. She desperately hopes that cute, smart Brandon Roberts (Jonathan Keltz) will ask her to the prom,

Which he does – in the least romantic, most practical manner possible. Both Brandon and Nova work on the prom committee, so he asks her to be his date solely because both need to arrive at the dance early and he thinks it’d be logical for them to carpool. Although Nova gets a date with the boy she likes, she’s not exactly happy at the asexual efficiency of the whole thing.

Nova’s life takes an even bigger turn for the worse when the shed with all the prom decorations goes up in flames. Nova wants to rebuild, but all the members of her team balk due to other commitments. Principal Dunnon (Jere Burns) comes up with a solution: as punishment, he orders school malcontent Jesse Richter (Thomas McDonell) to help her. They hate each other, but attitudes start to change as they work together.

Prom boasts about 1000 other character-based subplots as well, all of which revolve around prom-related stresses. Most of these focus on nerdy characters who struggle to obtain dates or established couples with relationship issues. The Nova/Jesse plot dominates, though, so I thought it was the only one worth discussion.

Is the movie itself worth your time? Maybe, though only if you’re prom-age – or younger, really. Prom is so perky and peppy that I doubt actual 17/18-year-olds would dig it. While I suppose it might speak to their experiences, I suspect they’d view it as too “Disney Channel” for their liking.

Though 17/18-year-olds can dig movies about high school. Heck, Breakfast Club came out a few months before my actual prom, but my friends and I still went to see it.

However, Breakfast Club was downright sophisticated and “adult” compared to the fairly teeny-bopper Prom. This one definitely nods in the direction of the John Hughes hit, especially via its depiction of the two main characters. Can we view Nova as anything other than a nicer version of the popular girl played by Molly Ringwald, and is Jesse more than a less self-destructive, better-looking take on the Judd Nelson role?

Nope, and the movie includes plenty of other clichés/stereotypes as well. I think it was a mistake to cast the film’s story net so wide. With so many different subplots to serve, none of them work especially well. Again, Nova/Jesse dominate, but they still receive too little attention to develop in a compelling way, and the other 10,000 subplots work even less well.

It’s as if the filmmakers either didn’t have faith in any of the various tales to become primary – or as if they didn’t want to bother to develop them beyond flimsy characterizations. There’s not the remotest amount of depth to anything we see here, so expect thin personalities. Heck, you’ll probably have a hard time remembering who’s who; the characters fly by so quickly that it’s tough to keep track of them.

The movie does spotlight the bizarre trend in which boys must stage elaborate shenanigans to invite girls. Back in my day – you know, when we walked to school through 20 miles of deep snow – a guy would say “do you want to go to the prom with me?” and that was that. She’d say “yes” or she’d say “no”, but we didn’t have to jump through any hoops.

Apparently 21st century girls are much more high maintenance, and they expect boys to deliver complicated, creative methods of invitation. Why? I have no idea, but Prom shows these techniques in action.

Otherwise, it’s a dud – at least if you’re over the age of 17, and probably even if you’re older than 12 or so, and also probably if you’re male. This is the kind of dreamy view of high school most enjoyed by girls not yet in high school. Prom doesn’t provide a painful 104 minutes, but it gives us a forgettable 104 minutes.

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

Prom appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.78:1 on this Blu-Ray Disc. Though not killer, this was an attractive image.

From start to finish, sharpness looked positive. A bit of softness occasionally crept into wider shots, but this was never significant. Instead, the film looked concise and well-defined. No issues with jagged edges or moiré effects occurred, and edge enhancement was absent. I also failed to detect any source flaws.

In terms of colors, the movie featured a natural palette that favored a slight golden tone. Across the board, the hues looked positive. They showed nice clarity and breadth and came out well, though the golden tint has the odd effect of making almost all the actors look vaguely Hispanic. Blacks were dark and deep, while shadows appeared clear and smooth. I thought the movie consistently looked quite nice.

I thought that the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack of Prom seemed fine but it didn’t excel because of a lack of ambition. Like most teen comedies, the movie featured a limited soundfield that strongly favored the forward channels. It showed nice stereo spread to the music as well as some general ambience from the sides.

Panning was decent, and the surrounds usually kicked in basic reinforcement. A few scenes opened up better, though, like those at the actual prom. However, most of the movie stayed with limited imaging.

Audio quality appeared good. Speech was natural and distinct, with no issues related to edginess or intelligibility. Effects sounded clean and accurate, with good fidelity and no signs of distortion. Music was perfectly fine, as the score and songs showed positive dimensionality. This track was good enough for a “B-“ but didn’t particularly impress.

Only a few extras fill out the disc. Last Chance Lloyd delivers a short film that reprises some of the film’s characters. It goes for 10 minutes, 19 seconds as it shows more of Lloyd’s attempts to get a date. The short actually feels like a collection of deleted scenes. Some of the material should’ve made the end cut, especially since “Last Chance” gives us a better view of why Lloyd takes his sister to the prom; he just seems desperate in the theatrical film, but “Last Chance” makes him look noble. If nothing else, the shot in which he asks his sister to the dance should’ve been part of the final film.

Putting on Prom runs five minutes, 59 seconds and includes notes from director Joe Nussbaum, producer Justin Springer, screenwriter Katie Wech, and actors Yin Chang, Joe Adler, Nolan Soltillo, Nicholas Braun, Janelle Ortiz, DaVaughn Nixon, Kylie Bunbury, Aimee Teagarden, Raini Rodriguez, Danielle Campbell, and Thomas McDonell. We learn about the project’s roots and script, cast and performances, and cast/crew prom memories. The early moments about the film’s creation offer some nice notes, but the rest is pretty fluffy and superficial. Still, it breezes past quickly and is an easy watch.

Under Bloopers, we get a two-minute, 34-second reel. Should you expect anything other than goofs and giggles? Nope – it’s a completely forgettable collection.

Four Deleted Scenes fill a total of seven minutes, 44 seconds. We find “Simone and Tyler” (0:59), “Additional Archfield Escape” (0:41), “Jess at Tux Shop” (0:54) and “Additional Prom Scenes” (0:58). Virtually all of these offer minor character bits but nothing notable.

The overall running time of the deleted scenes becomes expanded by introductions from Nussbaum and Springer. They tell us background about the sequences and why they cut them. Their notes add some good info about the clips.

Finally, we get seven music videos. With a total running time of 24 minutes, 16 seconds, these include Allstar Weekend’s “Not Your Birthday”, Neon Trees’ “Your Surrender”, Moon’s “Time Stand”, Nolan Sotillo’s “We Could Be Anything” and “Juntos Lo Haremos Bien”, Those Dancing Days’ “I’ll Be Yours” and Girl in a Coma’s “Come On, Let’s Go”. Of all these, “Your Surrender” is probably the most interesting, if just because it involves new footage of the movie’s stars. Most of the others seem pretty ordinary

The disc opens with ads for The Muppets, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, and Cars 2. These also appear under Sneak Peeks along with promos for the Prom soundtrack, Shake It Up, and DisneyNature: African Cats. No trailer for Prom shows up here.

A second disc offers a DVD Copy of Prom. As always with Disney releases, this is a standard retail version of the platter. Some studios toss in old or dumbed-down discs, so it’s nice that the studio provides more value with their bonus DVDs.

A film meant for teens and younger, Prom probably won’t do much to stir fond memories among older folks. It delivers characters and plotlines that seem overly familiar and stale as it fails to do anything to endear itself to anyone but viewers too young to understand that the film’s so overly familiar and stale. The Blu-ray provides very good picture, decent audio and a smattering of mildly interesting supplements. The Blu-ray represents the movie well, but it’s not a memorable flick.

Viewer Film Ratings: -- Stars Number of Votes: 0
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