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Moms’ Night Out (a J!-ENT Blu-ray Disc Review)

September 1, 2014 by  



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“Moms’ Night Out” is a fun Christian comedy with a positive message for mothers.  Featuring a well-known cast, the film is entertaining, fun and worth checking out!

Images courtesy of © 2014 Night Out, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

TITLE: Moms’ Night Out

TELEFILM RELEASE: 2014

DURATION: 99 Minutes

BLU-RAY DISC INFORMATION: 1080p High Definition (2:40:1 aspect ratio), English, French 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, English Audio Description Track 5.1 Dolby Digital, SUBTITLES: English, English SDH, French

COMPANY: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

RATED: PG (For Mild Thematic Elements and Some Action)

Release Date: September 2, 2014

Directed by Andrew Erwin, Jon Erwin

Written by Jon Erwin, Andrea Gyertson Nasfell

Produced by Kevin Downes, Andrew Erwin, Jon Erwin, Elizabeth Hatcher-Travis, David A.R. White, Russell Wolfe

Executive Producer: Patricia Heaton, David Hunt, Dave Alan Johnson

Associate Producer: Joshua Walsh

Line Producer: Daryl C. Lefever

Music by Marc Fantini, Stefan Fantini

Cinematography by Kristopher Kimlin

Edited by Andrew Erwin, Jonathan Olive

Casting by Beverly Holloway

Production Designer:  Mark Garner

Art Direction by John Tegethoff

Set Decoration by Sallie Sabatini

Costume Design by Anna Redmon

Starring:

Sarah Drew as Allyson

Sean Astin as Sean

Patricia Heaton as Sondra

Trace Adkins as bones

David Hunt by Cabbie

Andrea Logan White as Izzy

Harry Shum Jr. as Joey

Abbie Cobb as Bridget

Robert Amaya as Marco

Kevin Downes as Kevin

Alex Kendrick as Pastor Ray

Sammi Hanratty as Zoe

Michael Leone as Brandon

Shiloh Nelson as Bailey

Brett Rice as Sergeant Murphy

Rhoda Griffis as Glenda

Anjelah Johnson-Reyes as Hostess

All Allyson and her friends want is a peaceful, grown-up evening of dinner and conversation… a long-needed moms’ night out. But in order to enjoy high heels, adult conversation and food not served in a paper bag, they need their husbands to watch the kids for three hours—what could go wrong?

From Affirm Films comes the Christian-based comedy “Moms’ Night Out”, directed by directorial duo Andrew Erwin and Jon Erwin (both directed “October Baby” and “The Mysterious Islands”).

The film stars Sarah Drew (“Grey’s Anatomy”, “Everwood”, “Radio”), Sean Astin (“The Goonies”, “The Lord of the Rings” films), Patricia Heaton (“Everybody Loves Raymond”, “The Middle”, “Beethoven”), country singer Trace Adkins, Andrea Logan White (“Sarah’s Choice”, “Brother White”), Harry Shum Jr. (“Glee”, “Step Up 2: The Streets”), Abbie Cobb (“StarStruck”, “Good Luck Charlie”, “90210”), Robert Amaya (“Courageous”, “October Baby”), Kevin Downes (“Courageous”, “The Moment After”) and Alex Kendrick (“Courageous”, “Facing the Giants”).

“Moms’ Night Out” will be released on Blu-ray in Sept. 2014.

The film revolves around busy mother and mommy blogger Allyson (portrayed by Sarah Drew) who wants to have the perfect family life and to be the perfect mother.

But the stress of being a mother is difficult for Allyson as she feels overworked and stressed.

Allyson’s friends include Sondra (portrayed by Patricia Heaton), the wife of the local pastor and Izzy (portrayed by Andrea Logan White).

As Allyson starts to realize that trying to push herself as a mother is becoming exhausting and making her unhappy, her friends are in similar situations.

Sondra and her husband are dedicated to the church but are too busy for their teenage daughter, while Izzy who has two twins with her husband Marco, is not sure how her husband will react to her pregnancy.

In order to have a break from it all, Allyson wants to have one day away from the children, so she decides to have a “Moms’ Night Out” with Sondra and Izzy, and leaving her and Izzy’s children with Sean (portrayed by Sean Astin).  But Allyson is a bit freaked out that Sean’s video game buddy is coming by and she doesn’t trust him being around the children because he’s a hardcore gamer.

Meanwhile, his step-sister Bridget (portrayed by Abbie Cobb) is starting a new job and is hoping for Allyson to take care of her son Phoenix, but instead decides to leave her son with her ex-boyfriend.

As Allyson, Sondra and Izzy plan to have an exciting night, will Allyson’s planning for a “perfect” night work out as she expected?

VIDEO:

“Moms’ Night Out” is presented in 1080p High Definition (2:40:1 aspect ratio).  Picture quality features great detail for closeups, skin tones look natural and fort he most part, picture quality is well-saturated.  I did not notice any artifacts or banding issues during my viewing of the film.

AUDIO & SUBTITLES:

“Moms’ Night Out” is presented in English 5.1 DTS-HD MA and English – Audio Description Track 5.1 Dolby Digital and a Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital soundtrack.  This comedy is primarily dialogue-driven and sounds crystal clear through the center and front channel.

While the film is primarily a all-dialogue soundtrack, there are moments where music is well-utilized from Psy’s “Gangnam Style” to other contemporary music plus there are some action scene moments (such as a chase scene) that utilizes the surround channels, but primarily the soundtrack is dialogue-driven.

Subttles are in English, English SDH and French.

SPECIAL FEATURES

“Moms’ Night Out” comes with the following special features:

  • Commentary with Directors Andrew Erwin and Jon Erwin and Producer Kevin Downes 
  • Deleted Scenes – (2:55) Featuring five deleted scenes.
  • The Heart of Moms’ Night Out – (3:55) The cast and crew discuss why they were drawn to make this film.
  • Casting of Moms’ Night Out – (6:20) How the cast was selected for “Moms’ Night Out”.
  • The Art of Improv – (4:46) How improv was utilized in “Moms’ Night Out”.
  • The Art of Action – (5:10) The chase scene for “Moms’ Night Out”.
  • Bloopers – (5:36) Outtaks from “Moms’ Night Out”.

EXTRAS:

“Moms’ Night Out” comes with an Ultraviolet code which allows viewing the film in HD on PC’s, tablets and cell phones.

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As a husband and also a Christian, I found “Moms’ Night Out” to be an entertaining film with a message that doesn’t overly preach but it takes on a topic that isn’t explored in films all that much.

And that is the role of the mother.

Sure, there are films and even television shows that explore the mother’s connection with a child and the parental duties of a mother.  But rarely do you see films that features the wife needing a break from the parenting but needing time off to hang out with friends.

I know in my marriage, the ability to take breaks away from family is important and I know many women who are similar to the protagonist Allyson.  They try very hard to be a perfect mother, dedicating themselves 100% to being a mother, but what happens when the person needs that break and for some, one find ways to accomplish that.  From hanging out with friends, some take jobs, hiring a nanny or babysitter, having that break to achieve clarity is important.

But with Allyson, she represents many mothers who are unhappy because they feel their lives after having children is being cooped up in a house and are unable to have that necessary break.

“Moms’ Night Out” gives us three mothers with different issues.  Allyson trying to be perfect mother, Sondra trying to be a perfect wife and Izzy expecting another child and not sure how her stressed-out husband will react.

So, there is a positive message in this film that deals with motherhood and I know women, mothers and wives can sympathize with the characters, while men/husband/fathers, should understand.

I admit that I was surprised about the cast of this film.  Affirmed Films has really done a great job in bringing in well-known talent for Christian films.  There has been a long standing criticism towards the quality of Christian films, from the casting of unknown talent, to the overly preaching message which some critics felt was overly forced.

But with “Moms’ Night Out”, the message is easy to understand and not shoved in your face.  The talent are well-known from Sarah Drew, Sean Astin, Patricia Heaton, Trace Adkins and others being part of the film. The working chemistry between Sarah Drew and Sean Astin was fantastic.

And for those who are familiar with the Christian film “Courageous”, will be thrilled to see a few members of the cast reunited for this film.

And while there are a number of positives that work with the film, unfortunately the quality of the storyline starts to go south a bit.  Granted, seeing mothers going to a bowling alley with “Gangnam Style” blasting in the background or seeing them in jail, just seems a bit farfetched.  Especially the drastic measures that the husbands must go through during the night.  While sometimes hilarious, sometimes certain plot lines make you want to roll your eyes and leaving you with an impression that writers could have done much better.

As for the Blu-ray release, picture quality is very good.  Colors are well-saturated and detail is also noticeable.  Lossless soundtrack is primarily dialogue and musically driven, but there are some moments with surround usage due to the action scenes.  And you get an audio commentary track with a few special features.

Overall, “Moms’ Night Out” is a fun Christian comedy with a positive message for mothers.  Featuring a well-known cast, the film is entertaining, fun and worth checking out!






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