07/28/2014  
Cuban Fury on Blu-ray & DVD Jul 29Draft Day on Digital HD Aug 19, VOD Aug 29, Blu-ray Combo Sep 2Prom Night on Blu-ray and DVD Sep 9Ghostbusters & Ghostbusters II in Theaters Aug 29 & Blu-ray Sep 16Toy Story of Terror! On Blu-ray + Digital Copy, DVD, and More Aug 19The Railway Man on Early Digital Aug 1 on DVD/Blu-ray Aug 12Gangster on DVD & VOD Jul 22

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

Sandra Bullock Celebrates Her 50th Birthday At Cowboy B...
Kevin Smith Blames Jennifer Garner for Ending Friendshi...
Cuban Fury on Blu-ray & DVD Jul 29...
Box Office Charts From Box Office Mojo Jul 24 - 26...
Draft Day on Digital HD Aug 19, VOD Aug 29, Blu-ray Com...

JB Joseph Burke

The Answer to American Idol's Problems Is......
CONCRETE BLONDES...
CREAM FAREWELL CONCERT...
JACK REACHER...
MANBORG...

CA Chuck Aliaga

CORRUPTION (BLU-RAY)...
THE ATTACK (BLU-RAY)...
TANK GIRL (BLU-RAY)...
HORROR STORIES...
THE UNINVITED (BLU-RAY)...

RR Rich Rosell

THE GIRL...
THE HORDE...
LIFE IS SWEET (BLU-RAY)...
SHOUT AT THE DEVIL (BLU-RAY/DVD COMBO)...
THE BLUE ANGEL (BLU-RAY)...

MZ Mark Zimmer

BABY PEGGY: THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM...
STORAGE WARS: VOLUME THREE...
Take Part in a Film Restoration...
THE 39 STEPS (BLU-RAY)...
DARK SHADOWS: THE BEST OF BARNABAS...

JS Jesse Shanks

2 BROKE GIRLS...
DOWNTON ABBEY SEASONS ONE & TWO LIMITED EDITION...
FLORENCE AND THE SPIRIT OF THE RENAISSANCE...
NAZI COLLABORATORS...
KATT WILLIAMS: KATTPACALYPSE...

RJ Ross Johnson

THE LIFE AND DEATH OF COLONEL BLIMP (BLU-RAY)...
PURPLE NOON (BLU-RAY)...
WEEKEND (BLU-RAY)...
JUAN OF THE DEAD...
THE DEVIL'S NEEDLE AND OTHER TALES OF VICE AND REDEMPTI...

JD Jon Danziger

SUNSET BOULEVARD...
SALO, OR THE 120 DAYS OF SODOM...
TABLOID...
CUL-DE-SAC...
3 WOMEN...

JC Joel Cunningham

YOJIMBO/SANJURO...
SUMMER HOURS (L'heure d'ÈtÈ)...
WIZARD OF OZ...
WINGS OF DESIRE...
HORTON HEARS A WHO!...

DH Dan Heaton

REVANCHE...
LAST DAYS OF DISCO...
NIGHTS AND WEEKENDS...
STARGATE SG-1: CHILDREN OF THE GODS...
STARGATE ATLANTIS: THE COMPLETE FIFTH SEASON...

MS Matt Serafini

THE STEPFATHER...
THE HILLS RUN RED...
MANAGEMENT...
NIGHT OF DEATH...
GNAW...

KC Kevin Clemons

Freddy Got Fingered...

JU Jeff Ulmer

Secure The Second Season of The Border on DVD August 25...
THE WALTONS: THE COMPLETE 9TH SEASON...
Dance Me Outside kicks onto DVD May 6, 2008...

DD Dale Dobson

Film-Fest 4: Sundance 2000 & Hawaii...

RM Robert Mandel

Saving Private Ryan...

Share: email   Print      Technorati.gif   StumbleUpon.gif   MySpace   digg.gif delicious.gif   google.gif   magnolia.gif   facebook.gif
Permalink: Permalink.gif



Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

Paramount Studios presents
We're No Angels (1989)

Deputy: Bless me father for I have sinned, it's been three weeks since my last confession.
Ned: Uh huh?
Deputy: I can't help myself.
Ned: Yeah, uh huh?
Deputy: Please, father.
Ned: What?!
Deputy: Help me.
Ned: Okay, what?! What?! What is it?! I can't help you if you don't tell me!
Deputy: I've been sleeping with this woman.
Ned: Huh? Alright, what? You're not married to her?
Deputy: No.
Ned: You're married to someone else?
Deputy: My wife!
Ned: Wife know about this?
Deputy: No!
Ned: Well what are you worried about then? Forget about it! Stop whining.

- Bruno Kirby, Robert De Niro

Review By: Brian Calhoun   
Published: February 23, 2004

Stars: Robert De Niro, Sean Penn, Demi Moore
Other Stars: Hoyt Axton, Bruno Kirby, James Russo, John C. Reilly, Wallace Shawn
Director: Neil Jordan

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for violence, language
Run Time: 01h:46m:12s
Release Date: February 17, 2004
UPC: 097363215448
Genre: comedy


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B B-A-B D-

DVD Review

Initially, I had little interest in watching We're No Angels. From what I could discern, it merely seemed like yet another screwball comedy with cheap gags and little plot. However, when I discovered that the creative team boasted legendary actors Robert De Niro and Sean Penn in addition to profound screenwriter David Mamet, my curiosity heightened. Though I am giving the film a modest recommendation, it is primarily for a different reason than the contributions of the aforementioned participants. The real standout of We're No Angels is the fantastic visual design. For a genre that I often find looks dull and uninspired, this is quite honestly one of the most visually splendid comedies I have seen. Even so, while the film is a wonder to look at, it never quite reaches its comedic potential.

The story takes place in 1939, when two convicts (Robert De Niro and Sean Penn) escape from prison only to find themselves quickly pursued by the warden and his guards. Upon reaching a small town near the Canadian border, the criminals are mistaken for two missing priests who were to take part in a local holy procession. They take advantage of this situation by posing as men of the cloth so they can participate in the holy procession that will lead them from the United States into newfound freedom in Canada.

We're No Angels is a remake of the 1955 film starring Humphrey Bogart and Aldo Ray. While I have not seen the original, I found it interesting that De Niro and Penn seemed to be attempting to mimic the flamboyant acting styles often seen in comedic films of the 1940s and 1950s. While their performances do lend an aura that is reminiscent of classic cinema, this device ultimately feels a bit awkward within a more modern production. Nevertheless, the consummate actors still offer fantastic performances that, while somewhat hammy, are a joy to observe. De Niro often got a chuckle out of me just from his quirky facial expressions. Also here are several excellent supporting performances, including a pensive performance from Hoyt Axton, as well as delightful appearances by the always entertaining John C. Reilly and Wallace Shawn.

The biggest irony of We're No Angels is the lackluster screenplay by David Mamet, a playwright who typically pens eloquent and fascinating words. For this film, Mamet has instead created an abundance of moronic characters with uninteresting dialogue. I am uncertain if Sean Penn's bumbling sermon near the end of the film was intended to be comedic or dramatic, but either way, it is silly and unimpressive. Furthermore, Mamet's one-note plot offers very little character development. As a result, the story never leads anywhere and gave me nothing to ponder when it was over. Of course, a good comedy need not possess much more than hearty jokes, which are evident, yet too few and far between.

The laughs generated in We're No Angels are strong, yet I am disappointed that the film failed to consistently deliver the level of humor that was apparent in the second act. I am recommending the film, however, based on the solid performances and stunning visual style. It is no surprise that director Neil Jordan went on to direct the also aesthetically impressive Interview with the Vampire and The Crying Game. These artistic visuals may feel awkward in a comedic picture, but the cinematic compositions are still mesmerizing to behold.

Rating for Style: B
Rating for Substance: B-

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio2.35:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicyes


Image Transfer Review: The 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen image transfer is a pleasant surprise. Thanks to a marvelous restoration job, this 1989 film looks as good as, if not better than, many modern releases. The entire image is clear with virtually no hint of video noise. Edge enhancement is evident but surprisingly subdued, even when a black object appears against a white background. While the color palette is drab and somewhat antiseptic, it has been beautifully rendered in accordance with the filmmakers' intentions. If I had to nit-pick, my only complaints would be that the image occasionally appears soft and slightly wanting in detail. Additionally, there is a minor lack of shadow delineation in darker scenes. Overall, this is a tremendous transfer of a 15 year old film.

Image Transfer Grade: A-

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Englishyes
Dolby Digital
5.1
Englishyes


Audio Transfer Review: The newly created 5.1 Dolby Digital soundtrack, while not as impressive as the image transfer, is an admirable achievement. Fidelity is fairly thin, sounding somewhat top heavy and tinny with the music. The music does, however, fill the soundstage nicely with adequate blend throughout the surround channels. Bass presence is rather tame, yet ample low end is delivered from the music, and I detected rather powerful LFE from the ending waterfall sequence. Though nothing dazzling, this remastered soundtrack is better than I had expected.

Audio Transfer Grade: B

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 22 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English with remote access
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: English subtitles are the only offering.

Extras Grade: D-

 

Final Comments

We're No Angels exceeded my expectations, if only slightly, in nearly every facet. Though the comedic level of the film could have been greater, the visual structure is quite impressive and beautifully rendered in this fine anamorphic widescreen image transfer. While it is a shame that there are no special features to complement this release, We're No Angels will still make a good rental for those looking to see an above average comedy.

 


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search

DVD REVIEW ARCHIVE


Get FREE Shipping on all orders at TimeLife.com! - 120x90

 



Microsoft Store

Keywords

movie, celebrity, chelsea handler, whitney cummings, sandra bullock, million dollar cowboy bar in jackson hole, wyoming, diane mcmanus, southern soul all stars, kevin smith, ben affleck, jennifer garner, mallrats, chasing amy, dogma, jay and silent bob strike back, batman v superman: dawn of justice, comedy, box office, movies, drama, horror, music, nick jonas, jonas brothers, jason evigan, r&b, chains, television, donna dixon, bosom buddies, dan aykroyd, james brown biopic, get on up, saturday night live, doctor detroit, fx, fargo, martin freeman, billy bob thornton, allison tolman, animation, tca awards, breaking bad, true detective, matther mcconaughey, hbo, itunes festival 2014, september, pharrell williams, kylie minogue, maroon 5, david guetta, sam smith, blondie, beck, kasabian, philip seymour hoffman, february death, cooper, tallulah, willa, mimi odonnell, james cahill jr., david friedman, action, app, james garner, maverick, the rockford files, devine secrets of the ya-ya sisterhood, 8 simple rules, the children's hour, doris day, reality, marvel comics, thor, femail, god of thunder, mjolmir, super hero, johnny winter, blues guitar player, zurich switzerland, johnny winter album, willie dixon, walter horton, sex tape, the purge: anarchy, planes: fire & rescue, dawn of the planet of the apes, documentary

On Kindle!
On Facbook!
digitallyOBSESSED!
digitallyOBSESSED!
Promote Your Page Too
Become a Reviewer | Search | Review Vault | Reviewers
Readers | Webmasters | Privacy | Contact