Director: John Landis
Cast: Dan Aykroyd, Eddie Murphy, Jamie Lee Curtis
Release Date: December 1, 2020
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Disc Rating: 8/10
The very rich and extremely greedy Duke Brothers (Don Ameche and Ralph Bellamy) wager a bet over whether “born-loser” Billy Ray Valentine (Eddie Murphy) could become as successful as the priggish Louis Winthorpe III (Dan Akroyd) if circumstances were reversed. So begins one of the funniest, most outrageous comedies of the 80s, cementing Eddie Murphy’s superstar status. Alongside the street-smarts of Ophelia (Jamie Lee Curtis), Winthorpe and Valentine are a trio ready for a riotous revenge that culminates on the commodities trading floor in New York City. Trading Places is presented here newly remastered from a 4K film transfer, under the supervision of director John Landis.
Please Note: Paramount Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Post. The opinions I share are my own.
You can also check out our Blu-ray reviews for the other releases in the ‘Paramount Presents’ Blu-ray line by clicking on each title below!
The comedy classic ‘Trading Places’ tells the story of two men with drastically different lives, Louis Winthorpe III is wealthy and living life in great luxury with no thought for those he considers beneath him while Billy Ray Valentine is forced to lie in order to garner sympathy just to be able to eat. But when the Duke Brothers (and Louis’ bosses) make a bet that Valentine can achieve the same level of success if offered the financial opportunities and that Louis will fall as low as Valentine with his taken away it leads to a hilarious chain of events that sends their lives spinning out of control. Now, the beloved 1980’s comedy directed by John Landis and starring comedic legends Eddie Murphy and Dan Aykroyd returns home on Blu-ray fully remastered and better than ever!
The hilarious 1983 comedy ‘Trading Places’ joins the collectible ‘Paramount Presents’ Blu-ray line as the twelfth entry in the ongoing series of Blu-ray releases celebrating the studio’s expansive library over the decades and presenting each in numbered Blu-ray releases that all feature new 4K film transfers, plus collectible packaging and extras. This comedic gem is definitely worthy of a spot on Paramount’s lineup of film classics, it’s a fun, funny and at times quite touching tale of two men thrown into unfamiliar situations and circumstances and the humorous and enjoyable misadventure they embark upon as a result. Directed by talented filmmaker John Landis (The Blues Brothers, An American Werewolf in London) and featuring a fantastic cast that includes Dan Aykroyd, Eddie Murphy, Ralph Bellamy, Don Ameche, Denholm Elliott and Jamie Lee Curtis, ‘Trading Places’ still holds up as a hilarious and unforgettable comedy masterpiece that’s become anything but stale over time. Earning a well-deserved reputation among the other notable classics of the era, it still delivers all of the goofy fun and laughs that it did upon its initial release nearly four decades ago.
Overall, the new ‘Paramount Presents’ Blu-ray release of the 1983 comedy masterpiece ‘Trading Places’ directed by John Landis brings the film back home on Blu-ray sporting an impressive newly remastered presentation from a 4K film transfer under the supervision of director John Landis that delivers on all fronts and should thoroughly satisfy the diehard fans. Offering a truly gorgeous new high definition video presentation that’s nicely complimented by a solid Dolby TrueHD multichannel soundtrack and a few extras, plus of course the standard collectible packaging that accompanies all of the releases in the ‘Paramount Presents’ Blu-ray line, it’s an altogether solid release that will surely serve as the definitive edition of the film for now. This new ‘Paramount Presents’ Blu-ray of ‘Trading Places’ is definitely recommended for dedicated fans of this beloved comedy classic that were already considering a purchase and the beautifully remastered presentation alone (not to mention the upgrade to lossless audio this time around) will probably be worth double dipping for many.
The ‘Paramount Presents’ Blu-ray release of ‘Trading Places’ features a new, full 1080p High Definition presentation of the film with a 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio, newly remastered from a 4K film transfer, under the supervision of director John Landis. This newly remastered presentation looks magnificent altogether and provides a clean, gorgeously detailed presentation with rich colors that still retains its share of grain and other welcome artifacts representative of its source material. It holds up impressively throughout, even during the few heavily populated or darkly lit sequences, never allowing anything occurring onscreen to become distorted or rendered indiscernible at any point. Overall, this is a wonderful new high definition video presentation and a definite upgrade to the previous Blu-ray releases of the film that should downright thrill fans.
The Blu-ray release features a 5.1 channel Dolby TrueHD soundtrack. This multichannel soundtrack sounds great and also marks the first Blu-ray release of the film to my knowledge to include a lossless audio offering as opposed to a lossy Dolby Digital presentation which in itself should be great news to fans. The new Dolby TrueHD soundtrack delivers splendidly across the board and offers a clean, sharp and occasionally somewhat active audio presentation that may not be overwhelmingly aggressive but still takes advantage of all five available channels at every fitting opportunity without allowing any dialogue or other audio elements that might be occurring simultaneously to clash or detract from one another. Overall, this is a solid 5.1 Dolby TrueHD soundtrack that sounds great from start to finish and should easily please the film’s fans.
The ‘Paramount Presents’ Blu-ray release of ‘Trading Places’ comes with the standard collectible packaging included on all of the limited edition Blu-ray releases in the ‘Paramount Presents’ line and includes a slipcase that opens up to feature a larger version of the original theatrical poster, along with more photos on the inside of the interior Blu-ray case (see the included beauty shot from the studio at the bottom of the review for a look inside). The disc itself also includes a few fun extras such as the new Featurette ‘Filmmaker Focus: John Landis on Trading Places’ (running approximately 9 minutes in length), along with some other archival extras such as a ‘Deleted Scene’ from the movie (running approximately 3 minutes) and another ‘Deleted Scene with Commentary by Executive Producer George Folsey, Jr.’ (approximately 2 minutes). We’re also treated to various Behind the Scenes Featurettes including ‘Insider Trading: The Making of Trading Places’ (approximately 18 minutes), ‘Dressing the Part’ (6 minutes), ‘The Trade in Trading Places’ (5 minutes) and ‘Trading Stories’ (8 minutes). An ‘Industry Promotional Piece’ (approximately 4 minutes) and the film’s ‘Theatrical Trailer’ (3 minutes) are also included, along with an ‘Isolated Score Track’ for the film itself.
*Please note that the above images are taken from the Blu-Ray and resized. They will additionally 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
The Comedy Classic ‘Trading Places’ is Now Available to Own on Blu-ray Newly Remastered as part of the ‘Paramount Presents’ Blu-ray line from Paramount Home Entertainment
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