Director: Lou Adler
Cast: Cheech Marin, Tommy Chong, Tom Skerritt
Release Date: April 10, 2018
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Disc Rating: 8/10
In UP IN SMOKE Cheech and Chong play wannabe musicians and stoners who unwittingly smuggle a van made of marijuana from Mexico to L.A. Their drug-laced humor keeps their spirits high as they unknowingly elude the police and meander their way to an outrageous finale at the Roxy Theatre in Hollywood where Cheech performs in a pink tutu and Chong plays drums in a red body suit with a Quaalude logo.
Get ready to take a hazy, laugh filled trip back in time with everyone’s favorite lovable and troublemaking stoner duo Cheech & Chong and their film debut ‘Up In Smoke’ which follows two down on their luck potheads who come together by chance and quickly find themselves embarking upon an unintentional misadventure. Spanning from the US to the Mexican border and back again as they unknowingly transport a van made of marijuana and evade a team of federal agents they don’t even realize is hunting them. Originally released in September of 1978, Cheech & Chong’s debut film ‘Up In Smoke’ still delivers the goods and holds up splendidly after four decades, now finally available on Blu-ray for the first time ever in time to celebrate its 40th anniversary.
A true comedy classic and the beginning of the duo’s notable library, Cheech & Chong’s debut film outing ‘Up In Smoke’ still manages to serve up plenty of hilarious fun and memorable moments, the majority of which still work remarkably well even four decades later with little to no barriers or elements that don’t largely transcend age and time and deliver as enjoyable of an experience for those in their 60’s as it does for viewers in their 20’s and 30’s. Longtime fans of legendary comedy duo Cheech & Chong and their film catalog in particular will definitely want to consider purchasing a copy of this 40th Anniversary Blu-ray release of Cheech & Chong’s ‘Up In Smoke’ which arrives home on Blu-ray at last sporting quite impressive high definition video and audio presentations on the feature film, along with some fun extras including a brand new interview with the duo and more (more detailed information regarding the bonus content can be found in the special features section of the technical specification coverage below) which should altogether make this release a definite must own for most fans, especially considering it also marks the first time it’s ever been released on Blu-ray disc which is an event many have surely been anxiously awaiting to say the least.
Overall, Cheech & Chong’s ‘Up In Smoke’ celebrates its 40th Anniversary with the film’s long-awaited Blu-ray debut, offering fans the chance to own the comedy pair’s unforgettable first movie in glorious high definition at last. This comedy classic still manages to hold up surprisingly well after so long and should still have no trouble eliciting laughs galore with this goofy and wildly enjoyable 90 minute ride that hasn’t become any staler over time. This 40th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray release of Cheech & Chong’s ‘Up In Smoke’ is definitely recommended for fans of the duo, their film library or simply this particular movie who should all be truly thrilled to finally have the opportunity to own the film that started it all on Blu-ray, and with solid high definition video and audio presentations, along with some fun extras both new and old.
The 40th Anniversary Blu-ray release of Cheech & Chong’s ‘Up In Smoke’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the film’s original 2.35:1 Cinemascope Aspect Ratio. The video presentation looks pretty wonderful as a whole and provides a sharp and detailed presentation from start to finish that holds up admirably even during the darker and heavily populated moments, never causing anything occurring on screen to become negatively affected or rendered indiscernible. Overall, this is a pretty fantastic high definition video presentation from Paramount that’s complimented by a more than substantial bitrate and should largely please most fans of this classic.
The Blu-ray release features a lossless 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. This lossless multichannel soundtrack offers a crisp and clean audio presentation throughout. While not incredibly active in the surround department, it occasionally takes advantage of all five available channels order to send some music, vehicle activity and other natural elements throughout the various speakers when appropriate, and making certain that any dialogue or other audio elements that might be occurring simultaneously remain clean, sharp and fully audible at all times. Overall, this is a solid 5.1 channel DTS-HD MA soundtrack that delivers in every way required of it and provides a nice compliment to the overall viewing experience.
The 40th Anniversary Blu-ray release of Cheech & Chong’s ‘Up In Smoke’ includes some fun bonus content that fans of the duo should enjoy, including some brand new material along with some archival extras. Included on the release is an ‘Audio Commentary with Cheech Marin and Director Lou Adler’, in addition to ‘How Pedro Met The Man: Up In Smoke At 40’ (running approximately 15 minutes in length) which features new interviews with Cheech & Chong. We’re also treated to ‘Roach Clips’ (aka Deleted Scenes) from the movie with Optional Commentary by Cheech Marin and Lou Adler (running approximately 11 minutes altogether) and ‘Lighting It Up: A look Back At Up In Smoke’ (approximately 11 minutes). Also included is the ‘”Earache My Eye” Featuring Alice Bowie – Animated Music Video’ (6 minutes), ‘Cheech & Chong’s “The Man Song”’ (3 minutes), plus a couple of ‘Vintage Radio Spots’ (3 minutes combined) and the ‘Theatrical Trailer’ (3 minutes) for the movie.
*Please note that the above images are taken from the Blu-Ray and resized. They additionally will suffer quality loss as a result of .jpg compression. Larger versions of each image can be viewed by clicking on the image. All images and content included on this Blu-Ray release are the property of their respective owners.
Disc Rating: 8/10
Cheech & Chong’s ‘Up In Smoke’ 40th Anniversary Edition; Arrives On Blu-ray & DVD April 10, 2018 & Available In A Deluxe Collector’s Edition Giftset On April 20, 2018 from Rhino Entertainment & Paramount Home Media Distribution