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City Island DVD Review

“City Island” is full of obnoxious characters.

“City Island” focuses on the dysfunctional and secretive Rizzo family in (you guessed it) City Island, New York. Vince (the father) is a corrections officer who wants to be an actor, his wife Joyce is a secretary who is suspicious of Vince, his daughter (Vivian) was suspended from college and decides to become a stripper unbeknownst to her parents, his son Vince Jr. has an BBW fetish, and his other son (Tony) from another marriage is in the prison he works at (only Tony doesn’t know that Vince is his dad). Additionally, the entire family hides the fact that they all smoke. As you can guess, all of these secrets become a major problem for the family as a whole. Can the family come clean about their secrets and make things better or is the family doomed?

Prior to seeing “City Island,” I kept hearing how it was a funny film that was very much a love letter to the actual City Island. After viewing it, however, I can’t say I share these sentiments. The film I saw was a frightfully dull character study marred by irritating characters who squabble and argue for virtually the entire running time. It was like watching a NY reality show or soap opera only you didn’t care about anything that was going on. How any of this material was dubbed “comedic” is beyond me.

The only redeeming quality of this film (aside from the location shooting) is the acting by Andy Garcia. It’s not that I liked his character, but I thought he did a fine job as a real-life actor pretending to be a family man who wants to be an actor. It was a believable performance and he carries the film.

The 1.78:1 widescreen picture quality is fine. Simply put, this is a solid transfer.

‘Island’ is a dialogue driven film and thus the Dolby Digital 5.1 audio track doesn’t have a whole lot today. With that said, it does a fine job with the dialogue and the occasional music.


* Anchor Bay trailers (including a “City Island” trailer).
* 15 ½ minutes of deleted scenes.
* “Dinner With The Rizzos”- Director Raymond De Felita and 4 cast members talk about the film and the City Island location over dinner.
* Commentary by writer/producer/director Raymond De Felita and writer/producer Andy Garcia. Honestly, the dinner table conversation was far more interesting than this bland commentary.

August 23, 2010 - Posted by | DVD review | , ,

1 Comment »

  1. There’s nothing earth-shatteringly new, but you do end up wishing the characters well, and I was happy to have spent time with them. It’s a good time, and I found myself actually laughing a lot. Good review, check out mine when you can!

    Comment by CMrok93 | March 18, 2011 | Reply

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