The Proposal appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.35:1 on this single-sided, double-layered DVD; the image has been enhanced for 16X9 sets. Only a smattering of fairly minor issues affected the transfer.
For the most part, sharpness looked good. At times, wider shots tended to be a little soft, but those examples weren’t terribly intrusive. Much of the film appeared pretty accurate and concise. No concerns with jagged edges or shimmering occurred, and edge enhancement remained minor. Source flaws also failed to create problems.
In terms of colors, Proposal tended to stay with a natural palette. Hues took on a light golden tone at times, but that stylistic choice didn’t overwhelm. Instead, the colors appeared pretty clear and concise. Blacks were deep and firm, while shadows showed good delineation. Overall, this was a pleasing presentation.
I thought that the Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack of Proposal seemed fine but it didn’t excel because of a lack of ambition. Like most 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 at a club; that sequence boasted lively music. 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.
When we move to the set’s extras, we open with an audio commentary from director Anne Fletcher and writer Peter Chiarelli. Both sit together for this running, screen-specific discussion of cast and performances, characters and story, sets and locations, cinematography and effects, script changes, costumes, and a few other elements.
Overall, this is an informative chat. The participants are a little grating as speaking personalities – they think they’re funnier than they are – but they deliver a reasonable amount of good material. I don’t think this is a delightful piece, but it offers enough facts to make it worth a listen.
We also get two Deleted Scenes and an Alternate Ending. The first category includes “Phone Message” (0:50) and “Walk and Talk” (1:24). As for the “Alternate Ending”, it runs six minutes, 33 seconds. “Message” adds a little unnecessary exposition, while “Walk” expands on Andrew’s character. It’s not particularly strong, but it’s decent. The “Ending” features broad comedy that takes place on a plane. It's a long distraction and wouldn’t have fit into the final flick well at all; the existing ending isn’t great, but this one’s too silly this late in the game.
We can view all of these with or without commentary from Fletcher and Chiarelli. They tell us a little about the sequences and let us know why they got the boot. Their remarks are somewhat lackluster but informative enough.
Set Antics: Outtakes and Other Absurdities from The Proposal lasts six minutes, 32 seconds. Despite the unusual title, this is your standard collection of bloopers and silliness. Like the movie itself, “Antics” is pretty forgettable.
A few ads open the disc. We get clips for Old Dogs and Everybody’s Fine. These also appear under Sneak Peeks along with promos for Cheri, Legend of the Seeker S1, 10 Things I Hate About You, Lost S5 and Blu-ray Disc. No trailer for The Proposal shows up here.
Finally, the set provides a Digital Copy of the film. With this, you can slap the movie on your computer or portable viewing gadget. Whee!
Why did The Proposal become a major hit? I have no idea. While not an unpleasant experience, it lacks anything to make it rise above its romantic comedy roots. The DVD offers very good picture, decent audio and a few useful supplements. This is by the numbers mediocrity.