Are We Done Yet? - Blu-Ray Movie Review
|5/4/2007||3/10/2007||Sony Pictures||Steve Carr|
|AVC MPEG-4||PCM 5.1 4.6Mbps|
A couple of months ago I managed to check out Are We There Yet? on DVD. That family friendly movie was about a young man called Nick (Ice Cube) who falls in love with a woman. Through a series of unexpected events he gets hooked into driving her two annoying kids across America to a convention which she is attending. Are We There Yet? wasn't the best movie we've ever seen - far from it, but there was the odd chuckle here and there. Given that the original movie earned a massive $US97 million worldwide (compared to a production budget of only $US32 million) the movie studio wasn't against a sequel either, and when we received the Blu-Ray disc we weren't against having a look either. That sequel, which sees the return of the same principal cast, is Are we Done Yet?.
|More renovations at the Futuregamez office?|
Are We Done Yet? picks up where the last story (Are We There Yet?) left off. Now married to Suzanne (Nia Long), Nick Persons (Ice Cube) has bought a quiet suburban house to escape the rat race of the big city and to provide more space for his new wife and kids Lindsey and Kevin. But when his new home quickly becomes a costly "fixer upper" and he finds himself at the mercy of an eccentric contractor (John C. McGinley), Nick's suburban dream soon becomes a riotous nightmare.
While the first movie had its charms I found this sequel lacking in almost every area. Let's start with the storyline. It's umm, predictable, boring, umm annoying and well, yar, predicable is the word really. Actually the one aspect of this movie that I really dislike are the two kids. At the end of the first movie they come to accept Nick, but this movie sees them reverting to their torturous ways.
|Time for a family meeting...|
Ice Cube - who for some reason I don't actually mind as a singer and in some of his acting roles (Three Kings, Babershop and Boyz n The Hood) looks like here's here for the pay cheque only - it certainly can't be for the script! To see John C. McGinley (Scrubs, Platoon, Wall Street) in a role in a movie such as this is criminal - he's so much better then the two dimensional, multi-skilled character in this movie. Talking animals (and fish no less!) in a movie? For the love of god... This is definitely one for the kids and is certainly a few rungs below the already average Are We There Yet?.
So the movie is well below the mark in terms of storyline and entertainment, but how about the video? Well we're pleased to report that this is a pretty good transfer overall. Presented in the films original aspect ration of 1.85:1 and using AVC MPEG-4 encoding this movie, which runs for 92 minutes, looks pretty special. The bitrate hovers between 25-30Mbps for the most part with vivid colours from start to finish. With many of the scenes taking place outdoors with landscape type backdrops this really is a sight to behold. There was the odd scene which seemed to be a little soft - almost certainly a result of the original filming rather then the transfer to Blu-Ray - but it is noticeable.
|John C. McGinley is much better then this movie.|
Being such a recent movie, and as is the case with the video presentation, the audio options on the Are We Done Yet? Blu-Ray disc is impressive. As well as the English PCM 5.1 at 4.6Mbps we have English Dolby Digital 5.1 at 640kbps and also English Audio Descriptive Service. As is the case the PCM track is preferred with a slightly clearer audio field. I would love to tell you that there was an aggressive use of Surround Sound channels, but it is minimal at best. In fact in this day and age for such a new movie it was almost to the point of distraction that the audio is very heavily focused on the front channels.
I guess with a movie as poor as this we're glad to get any extras really - and to be honest the few extras that are here are certainly aimed at a younger audience. In fact I was a little disappointed in the extras - although everything from the DVD release has been ported over.
Kidding Around on Set: Making Are We Done Yet (6:50/HD):
|Damn obnoxious kids...|
Young actor Philip Bolden (who plays Kevin) gives us a look around the set during filming. Very lightweight, but any young movie lovers may enjoy this. Presented in High Definition with MPEG-2 compression and 192kbps Stereo Sound.
A pretty standard look at bloopers and outtakes from the filming of the movie. Disappointingly only presented in Standard Definition.
The “Are We Done Yet?” Film Quiz (HD):
A series of questions about the movie. It's pretty average, but at least it's in High Definition.
Chuck Mitchell Jr: Jack of All Trades (5:09/HD):
A look at Chuck's characters in the movie. Umm.. we saw all this in the movie guys? Why recycle it all?
|Ohh guess what is about to happen!|
Are We Done Yet? really is a poor movie with the only redeeming feature of this disc being the solid video transfer to Blu-Ray. If you have young kids then they may enjoy the movie to an extent, but whether or not they'll even like it enough to sit through it is questionable.
Review By: Dave Warner
Note: All images in this article are Copyright© Sony Pictures. They are only indicative of the movie and not sourced from the vastly superior Blu-Ray disc format.