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Fatso Blu-ray Review

Fatso.jpg

“Fatso” is an honest and heartfelt drama-comedy.

After his overweight cousin Sal passes away, the Italian-American food addicted Dominick is convinced by his sister to see a dietitian so he doesn’t wind up dying young like Sal. For Dominick, changing his eating habits is easier said than done when he’s surrounded by (and tempted by) tasty food. However, there might be one thing that can turn things around for Dominick and that’s love (more specifically, a woman named Lydia).

Written and directed by Anne Bancroft (who also stars in it as Dom’s sister Antoinette), 1980’s “Fatso” is not what you think it is. At first glance, one might think it’s simply a comedic vehicle for Dom DeLuise (who is wonderfully soulful here) but it’s much more than that. In fact, it’s not even strictly a comedy as the movie treats its characters and subject matters with respect. The film (which has a bit of a “Marty” vibe at times) covers a lot of ground over the relatively short runtime as it digs into topics such as eating disorders, the struggles and psychology of overeating, self-control, body image, Italian-American families, and more. It was refreshing to see a story that doesn’t mock its subject or merely make fun of overweight people as tends to be the case with so many films. Bancroft deserves a lot of credit for that alone.

As engaging as “Fatso” is, I do feel like more could have been done with the central concept and with Dominick’s character. There are times when the movie is firing on all cylinders and is actually quite funny (the knife scene is easily the highlight), but there are also moments where Bancroft feels uncertain of what to do with Dominick next. In that regard, it does feel like a sketch from a variety show that starts strong but doesn’t know how to end. Basically, “Fatso” has its ups and downs throughout, but the good outweighs the bad and it ultimately comes together well in the end.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 1.85:1 1080p. How does it look? The print’s defects are on display, but it’s a solid enough hi-def upgrade.

Audio Track: DTS-HD Mono. How does it sound? A quality Mono track. No more, no less.

Extras:
* Image gallery
* Press kit
* A 26 minute interview with film historian Maya Montanez Smukler in which she talks about the history of female directors and Anne Bancroft’s “Fatso.”
* “Looking Back On Fatso With Producers Stuart Cornfeld And Mel Brooks”- The two talk about the history of “Fatso” and how it came about and their involvement in the project in this nearly 12 ½ minute extra.

June 7, 2019 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , ,

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