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Sixteen Candles Blu-ray Review

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“Sixteen Candles” is still a charming teen comedy despite its flaws.

1984’s “Sixteen Candles” marks the directorial debut of John Hughes (who also wrote the script). In this teen comedy, the story revolves around Samantha who is having a bad day. She thought turning 16 would be a big deal, but it turns out, her family has forgotten her birthday entirely as they prepare for the wedding of her sister. Things don’t get much better the rest of the day as she doesn’t have a date to the school dance and receives unwanted advances from a geeky guy she has no interest in (Farmer Ted). Worse still, she has a crush on an older guy (Jake) who is already attached to another girl. There is a silver lining to all this, however, as Jake learns of Samantha’s crush and becomes interested in her. Will the two finally connect or will a series of circumstances keep them apart?

John Hughes is often noted as the master of 80s teen movies and this is one of his many beloved comedies. Admittedly, there are more than a few non-PC aspects that haven’t aged well here with the racial stereotypes involving Long Duk Dong, the homophobic comments, geeky/nerdy stereotypes and some rather skeevy character actions. If you can get past that though you’ll find a zany, angsty teen fairytale that is loaded with comedy, heartfelt moments, dysfunctional family dynamics, oddball characters, and highly quotable dialogue that actually feels like dialogue teens would say (especially at the time). 

In typical Hughes form, the cast is first rate. Molly Ringwald really shines as Samantha. To me, this is among her best performances. Anthony Michael Hall may be a bit creepy at times, but he has charisma for days as Farmer Ted. Their roles are limited, but Joan Cusack, John Cusack, and Gedde Watanabe all have scene stealing moments despite the glaring stereotypes.

Note: This Blu-ray disc comes with the theatrical version and the extended cut which runs 2 minutes longer with one added scene.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 1.85:1 1080p. How does it look? Taken from a 4K scan of the original negative, this is a nice hi-def upgrade.

Audio Track: 1.0 Mono and 5.1 DTS-HD MA. How does it sound? You can’t go wrong with either option.

Extras:
* Shooting script, production stills, and poster/video art galleries
* Teaser trailer, 2 trailers, TV and radio spots.
* The cafeteria scene from the extended cut.
* A booklet featuring credits, essays by Nikki Baughan and Bryan Reesman, and photos
* Alternate home video soundtrack.
* New individual interviews with casting director Jackie Burch, actor John Kapelos (Rudy), filmmaker Adam Rifkin (who played the geek with the odd red shades), camera operator Gary Kibbe, and composer Ira Newborn,
* A new charming 19 minute conversation between actors Gedde Watanabe (Long Duk Dong) and Deborah Pollack (Marlene)
* A visual essay by writer Soraya Roberts
* An archival featurette with interviews titled “Celebrating Sixteen Candles.”

June 26, 2020 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , , , , , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. […] via Sixteen Candles Blu-ray Review — DVD Corner’s blog […]

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