[Blu-Ray Review] The Frequently Overlooked Comedy Classic ‘Senseless’ Arrives On Blu-Ray From Echo Bridge March 26

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Senseless [Blu-Ray]

Director: Penelope Spheeris

Cast: Marlon Wayans, David Spade, Matthew Lillard, Rip Torn, Brad Dourif

Release Date: Available March 26 on Blu-Ray Disc.

A Review By: Kevin Lovell

Film Rating: 8/10

Disc Rating: 8/10

Plot Summary:

Darryl Witherspoon is a young black college student who wants to win annual junior analyst competition, which can land him a job in a big brokerage company. He becomes a guinea pig for the drug developed at the college which is promised to heighten all senses by ten times.

Continue on after the jump for the full review.

 

I’m sure we all have those select films that we were extremely fond of and watched repeatedly throughout the years, yet for some reason never had a big following and others couldn’t quite understand just what we saw in them.  For me ‘Senseless’ has always been one of those films since I first caught it at my local theater about 15 years ago.  I had recently viewed ‘Scream’ about fifty times and was excited to see more of Matthew Lillard who I was enthralled with at the that point.  So with modest expectations I caught ‘Senseless’ at my local theater and was immediately blown away.  Not only was it hilarious and heartwarming, it was smart.  An R rated comedy about senseless113college economics majors vying for a position with a highly respectable firm.  How often do we see something like that in a comedy starring Marlon Wayans and David Spade.   So it began, I picked up ‘Senseless’ the day it was released on Laserdisc (it was the late 90s after all) and I probably re watched the film 20 times over the span of the following month.  The wit is sharp, the humor hysterical, and I thoroughly enjoyed the performances by the majority of the cast.  Wayans and Spade seem to match up oddly well as college economics majors competing for the top spot, and the witty banter between them is thoroughly amusing.  Rip Torn brings his subtle but harsh charm as per usual, though I still to this day feel Matthew Lillard stole the show as the punk rock roommate of Wayans cruising by with a hockey scholarship.

So here we are, 15 years later and you can imagine how pleasantly surprised I was to discover that Echo Bridge Home Entertainment would be releasing this personal favorite of mine on Blu-Ray disc.  So this weekend when I received a copy in the mail I immediately popped it in.  I hadn’t seen the film for a number of years prior to this viewing and I must say that even after so many years this film still holds up surprisingly well and has not lost any of it’s charm or brilliance.  This is definitely one Blu-Ray that will have plenty of repeat value.

 

 

VIDEO:
The video is probably the highest point of this release.  The cover claims it is presented in a 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio, though the small black bar at the bottom of the screen leads me to believe the film is actually presented in it’s senseless112proper 1.85:1 Aspect Ratio.  It is of course presented in full 1080p HD as well.
The video looks sharp, smooth and detailed with almost no issues noticeable aside from a few pops and white spots at brief moments, though I’m fairly certain that comes from the source, and in my personal opinion I much prefer when the studios don’t polish a film to the effect it glows when mastering to High Definition.  One of the best things about viewing older films on Blu-Ray is the added clarity and detail while still maintaining the vibe and presentation that incorporates them into that time at which they were released.

AUDIO:
Probably the only part of this release by I was mildly disappointed with was the lack of a 5.1 audio track.  The film is presented in 2.0 stereo, though the stereo format is presented senseless111in a very impressive uncompressed DTS-HD Master Audio 2 channel track.  I viewed the film using my receivers Dolby Pro-Logic II X capability which simulates any quality stereo soundtrack into 7.1 surround and I must say that I was extremely impressed with how clearly and effectively this 2 channel soundtrack delivered.  The voices are clear, the background music doesn’t overpower other important aspects of the presentation and the few moments where bass is present it still has a pretty impressive kick.  While it would always be preferable to have a multichannel soundtrack on any Blu-Ray disc I will happily admit that as far as 2 channel soundtracks go, this one was indeed top notch.

SPECIAL FEATURES:
The lack of special features on this release is a bit light, but with the extremely reasonable retail price that is perfectly acceptable as far as I’m concerned and would still happily cough up the money for this release without a second thought.  The one special feature on the disc is a 5 minute behind the scenes featurette that covers the process that went into creating the ice hockey scenes involving Wayans and Lillard.  It is a fun little featurette and definitely worth checking out if you have an extra five minutes upon completion of viewing the film.

Film Rating: 8/10

Disc Rating: 8/10

 

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‘Senseless’ will be available to own on Blu-Ray March 26 from Echo Bridge Home Entertainment for the incredibly low SRP of $14.99.  You can preorder your copy on Amazon now at a discounted price here or pick up your copy at your local retailer this March.

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