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How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days (a J!-ENT Blu-ray Disc Review)

August 2, 2009 by  



“Hilariously fun!  Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey have tremendous chemistry onscreen.  For those looking for a romantic comedy on Blu-ray, definitely give ‘How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days’ a chance.”

Images courtesy of © 2009 by Paramount Pictures. All Rights Reserved.

TITLE: How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days

DURATION: 115 minutes

BLU-RAY DISC INFORMATION: 1080p High Definition, English 5.1 Dolby TrueHD, French/Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital, Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish and Portuguese

COMPANY:  Paramount Home Entertainment

RATED: PG-13 (For some sexual material)

Release Date: August 18, 2009

Directed by Donald Petrie

Based on a book by Michele Alexander and Jeannie Long

Screenplay by Kristen Buckley, Brian Regan and Burr Steers

Executive Produced by Richard Vane

Produced by Robert Evans, Christine Forsyth-Peters, Lynda Obst

Associate Produced by Elizabeth Joan Hooper, Robin Guthrie Prybil, Brian Alexander

Music by David Newman

Director of Photography: John Bailey

Edited by Debra Neil-Fisher

Casting by Andrew S. Brown, Gail Levin

Production Design by Therese DePrez

Costume Design by Karen Patch

Starring:

Kate Hudson by Andie

Matthew McConaughey as Ben

Kathryn Hahn as Michelle

Annie Parisse as JEannie

Adam Goldberg as Tony

Thomas Lennon as Thayer

Michael Michele as Spears

Shalom Harlow as Green

Robert Klein as Phillip Warren

Bebe Neuwirth as Lana Jong

Oscar nominee Kate Hudson (ALMOST FAMOUS) and Matthew McConaughey (SAHARA) give the battle of the sexes an outrageously twist in the runaway comedy hit the Daily News applauds as “Hilarious!”

As the “How to…” columnist for trendy Composure Magazine, Andie Anderson (Hudson) agrees to write a first hand account about what it takes to drive a man out of your life in exactly 10 days.  At the same time, eligible and agency bachelor Benjamin Barry (McConaughey) accepts a high stakes bet that he can lure any woman into falling head over heels in love with him…also in 10 days.  The resulting romantic head-on collision ignites a series of deliriously comic deception that prove when it comes to true love…your heart cannot tell a lite.  From the director of MISS CONGENIALITY, it’s a wildly entertaining romantic romp.

In 2003, Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey would both highlight a romantic comedy that would be a film about the battle of the sexes.

The film was quite successful at the box office earning over a $171 million for domestic and international sales and also succeed with its DVD release.  Now the film gets its first High Definition transfer.

“How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days” is based on a book written by Michele Alexander and Jeannie Long.  The film is directed by Donald Petrie (“Miss Congeniality”, “Richie Rich” and “Grumpy Old Men”) and a screenplay by Kristen Buckley  and Brian Regan (both wrote “102 Dalmatians”) and Burr Steers.  The film would feature composer David Newman (“The Spirit”, “Norbit”, “Serenity”, etc.) and cinematography by John Bailey (“License to Wed”, “Mad Money” and “The Anniversary Party”).

The film stars Kate Hudson (“Almost Famous”, “Bride Wars” and “You, Me and Dupree”), Matthew McConaughey (“Sahara”, “We Are Marshall” and “Surfer Dude”), Kathryn Hahn (“Revolutionary Road” and “Crossing Jordan”), Annie Parisse (“Law & Order” and “National Treasure”), Adam Goldberg (“Zodiac”, “The Unusuals” and “Saving Private Ryan”), Bebe Neuwirth (“Frasier and “Law & Order: Trial By Jury”), Robert Klein (“Reign Over Me”, “The Sisters”, etc.) and Thomas Lennon (“Reno 911!”, “Hancock” and “I Love You, Man”).

The film revolves around Andie Anderson (Kate Hudson), a journalist at Composure Magazine who is growing tired of the types of articles she writes and wants to write deeper articles on politics and religion but is constantly reminded that the magazine she works for doesn’t feature those type of stories.  That same day, her friend and co-worker Michelle (Kathryn Hahn) had a major breakup and doesn’t know how the relationship ended.  With their boss Lana (Bebe Neuwirth) expecting a new article from them but Michelle is too distraught.  Lana wants a journalist to write about Michelle’s breakup which Michelle is against.  So, Andie quickly jumps in to save her friend and comes up with an idea to write about “How to Lose a Guy”.  Lana figures that she wants the article soon, so she tells Andie that the title will be “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days”.

Now, Andie with the help of her co-workers Michelle and Jeannie (Annie Parisse) try to find a guy for her to write an article about.

Meanwhile , advertising executive Benjamin Barry (Matthew McConaughey) wants to head a prestigious jewelry advertising account that his company wants but he has competition within the female ad execs who feel that jewelry should be an account headed by women.  So, Benjamin makes a bet with the women that if he can find a woman to love him in 10 Days and bring her to an upcoming party, he can have that account.  His boss Phillip (Robert Klein) is all for it.   So, the two female ad execs select Andie as the woman he must go for and see if he can make her love him.  But what Benjamin doesn’t know is that the two female ad execs were at the offices of Composure Magazine earlier and know that Andie is writing an article on “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days”. So, therefore they expect him to fail.

Immediately, Andie and Benjamin start working on their plans to hook each other.  Andie by using techniques of being needy, clingy, talking baby talk and doing and experimenting with many things that would easily drive men away.  All this while Benjamin knowing he has to stay with her to win the bet and baring the brunt of things that Andie does that he doesn’t like.

But what both don’t expect is that all this time together, they start to somehow become attracted to each other.  What will happen when they reach that tenth day?

VIDEO & AUDIO:

“How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days” gets its first High Definition treatment.  Presented in 1080p, the 2002 film is a film that shows off various areas of New York City and many colors.  But I must admit that the colors seem quite soft at times and do not sport a full vibrancy that I was hoping to see.

The good news is that the Blu-ray looks much better than its DVD counterpart but for videophiles who were hoping to see color vibrancy, picture quality is a little bit soft.  The film does retain its grain, blacks are nice and deep and no evidence of digital artifacting.

As for audio, the film is presented in English 5.1 Dolby TrueHD (also in French and Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital).  The film is primarily a dialogue and music driven film that sounds crisp and clear through the front and center channels.  The film does utilize the surrounds during scenes with crowds, so during the New York Knicks scenes, you can expect to hear the crowds through the surrounds. But overall, the lossless soundtrack for “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days” is satisfactory for this romantic comedy.

Subtitles are presented in English, English SDH, French, Spanish and Portuguese.

SPECIAL FEATURES:

“How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days” comes with the following special features.  Some in Standard Definition and some in High Definition:

  • Commentary by Director Donald Petrie – (15:37) A detailed commentary by director Donald Petrie and discussion of challenges of filming during an NBA game, the improvisation segments by Kate Hudson, the music used, chemistry of Hudson and McConaughey, scenes were shot but changed in the final cut and more.  A very insightful commentary.
  • How to Make a Movie in 2 Years – (11:13) Featured in High Definition, writers Michele Alexander and Jeane Long, along with producers Christine Peters and Lynda Obst talk about how the book became a film, the casting of the film and how this was a film where everything went pretty perfect.  Cast and crew got a long perfectly.
  • Why the Sexes Battle– (9:30) Featured in High definition, an evolution expert and a psychiatrist talk about the battle of the sexes, especially in the film.
  • Girls Night Out (5:15) – Featured in High Definition, this featurette is an interview with book writers Michele Alexander and Jeane Long in regards to their book and how some of their ideas were created.
  • Music Video – “Somebody Like You” by Keith Urban – (3:51)
  • Deleted Scenes – (9:30) Five deleted scenes with optional commentary by director Donald Petrie.

For some reason, Paramount did not include the two featurettes that were included on the 2003 DVD release.  The two featurettes “Mapping Out the Perfect Movie” and “Mapping Out the Perfect Location” are not on this Blu-ray release.

Personally, I enjoy films that are “Battle of the Sexes” type of storylines.  Especially when it comes to relationships.

Both Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey have a remarkable chemistry in the film and what they do to each other, seems quite believable.  I have to admit that I was just laughing throughout the film and seeing the things that Andie puts him through.  I just felt that there were many hilarious moments but also enjoyed the cinematography and parts of New York City that were captured.  It definitely made for a romantic film.

And it’s quite interesting to see how the film paid some homage to romantic comedies such as “When Harry Met Sally” and “Sleepless in Seattle” and also how they were able to shoot a film during a real NBA game. And of course, finding out from the audio commentary of how many scenes were improvised and thus giving the film its feel of naturalness.  I enjoyed that!

But the film does have its share of problems.  I felt that the first half was quite solid by the second half,  seemed a bit over-the-top especially how the two figure out that each other’s scheme.  And of course, most people don’t get serious in a relationship during the first two weeks this quickly.  But granted, this relationship between Andie and Benjamin was for the purpose of business but some may feel the concept of a heavy relationship within 10 days seems a bit too farfetched.  And some people may find the entire concept a bit too sexist for them.

As for the Blu-ray release, for a film released in 2003, I was expecting vibrant picture quality especially during daylight scenes.  Somehow it looks like many of the shots were during overcast and colors looked a bit muted and soft.  Granted, its better than its DVD counterpart but for those who are wondering if it’s worth the double dip, the answer is yes.  But I wouldn’t discard the original DVD since it contains two featurettes not included on the Blu-ray special features.  And at the same time, the Blu-ray does include features in High Definition that were not on the original DVD.

Overall,  I felt that “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days” was quite hilarious and intriguing, especially for those who have had dates or relationships with a significant other that helps push the other away than bring them together.    Personally, I found this film quite enjoyable, crazy and all-out fun!

If you’re looking for a romantic comedy on Blu-ray, definitely give “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days” a try!

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