'Dirty Grandpa: 4K Ultra HD+Blu-ray+Digital'
(Robert De Niro, Zac Efron, Jason Mantzoukas, et al / 4K Ultra HD+Blu-ray+Digital / R / 2018 / Lions Gate Home Entertainment)
Overview: Right before his wedding, an uptight guy is tricked into driving his grandfather, a lecherous former Army Lieutenant Colonel, to Florida for Spring Break.
4K Ultra HD Verdict: Lions Gate Home Entertainment continues to expand their 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray catalog offerings this June with the release of the, what I can only term, unexpectedly-chosen title from their recent stack of releases, 'Dirty Grandpa.'
Not exactly well received the first time around - cinematic experience wise - it has to be said that, and yet again, this 4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray + Digital combo pack's sharpness takes a fairly large step forward from others in their 4K Ultra HD catalog. It even comes with HDR (High Dynamic Range) for the complete 4K Ultra HD experience.
So, what we have here is 'Dirty Grandpa' presented to us as a two-disc release which contains the following tech information: Codec: HEVC / H.265;
Resolution: Upscaled 4K (2160p); HDR: Dolby Vision + HDR10; Aspect ratio: 2.40:1; Original aspect ratio: 2.39:1.
As with most all 4K UHD's, everything that we watch features a much brighter, deeper, more lifelike set of colors. Noticeably crisper with the overall clarity receiving an obvious boost here on this release, everything from a sweating De Niro and a bicep-punching Efrom is brought uber clearly to lie on screen.
Indeed, the picture enjoys the fruits of being digitally captured with Arri Alexa XTs and finished at a 2K DI, which means the added resolution brings out the extremely fine facial movements and such from the aforementioned actors. Together with enhancements all over cinematically, this is yet another reason to quickly invest in 4K TVs. For, and in general comparison, all these solid plot points leave the 4K UHD Blu-ray presentation looking almost smooth and flat; unlike the presentations we all have grown to know and "love" on our regular TVs, watching our regular Blu-rays.
As for the audio, well, we have a stunning English: Dolby Atmos; English: Dolby TrueHD 7.1 (48kHz, 24-bit); and Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1 with Subtitles in English; English SDH; and Spanish.
Overall, this is a very strong 4K UHD Blu-ray presentation, and, for the most part, the audio track remains fairly similar to its DTS-HD counterpart; with much of the action occupying the surrounds with outstanding directionality and placement where effects flawlessly pan between the sides and (Efron) rears.
Phew! OK, so, as for the movie itself, well, as aforementioned, not my go-to choice for releasing on 4K Ultra HD for a second stab at an audience, sorry. That said, it's not uncommon for Hollywood's A-list stars like to be handed to highly questionable projects; films that leave you asking "why?".
Robert De Niro definitely gives off an unusual (and brutally raucous) vibe here in arguably his goofiest role of his career, partially since he is not known for raunchy R-rated comedies and has spent most of his careers spawning in roles of serious subject matter.
Zac Efron, on the other hand, is no stranger to the hardcore comedy territory, such as playing a college fraternity leader in 'Neighbors' and its sequel.
These two actors collaborate for the first time in this raucous comedy directed by Dan Mazer, a film that's not terrible, but certainly what labels a low point in their career.
Zac Efron plays Jason Kelly, a high-strung lawyer in his way to marrying his boss's uptight daughter Meredith (played by Julianne Hough). With his wedding only days ahead, Jasok is asked to drive his widowed, loathsome grandfather Dick (played by Robert De Niro) from his house to Boca Baton, Louisiana.
Along the way, they run into college friends Lenore (played by Aubrey Plaza), Bradley (played by Jeffrey Bowyer Chapman), and Shaudia (played by Zoey Deutch), and what was supposed to be an easy cross-state trip results in an odyssey of drugs, booze, and embarrassing mayhem while grandfather Dick go outs in search for a new love of his life.
It's easy say Zac Efron and Robert De Niro do make quite an odd comedic duo at first glance. But the real question is do they make a successful duo here. To some extent, sort of. But it definitely isn't one that works as well as it should have.
The two leads both have heir hilarious moments every once a while but a lot of time, they try way too hard and it's not always funny. Efron and De Niro spend nearly the entire length spitting out raunchy dialogue ranging from sex jokes, genitalia jokes, masturbation jokes along with explicitly crude gags that often come off but forced though occasionally funny.
Of course, based on the title, the level of vulgarity shouldn't come to too much of a shock, except maybe the fact that De Niro indulges so far into the level and seems to have fun dropping a large horde of penis jokes. Possibly the most questionable element here maybe De Niro's flirtatious interaction with Aubrey Plaza who plays a college girl probably only a third of his age.
The aspect may be funny but tends to be conceived as rather than off-putting than sexy, especially considering the fact there is a brief sex scene between the two (no nudity involved).
In the end, the hilarity isn't particularly strong but could been enough to semi- distract viewers from the blatantly rushed story line, but only if you watching Efron get high on cocaine or De Niro drinking booze with college girls in bikinis.
As for a couple of the special features included, 'Lessons in Seduction' (1080p; 3:13) concentrates on the character of Lenore and her romantic inclinations and although only runs for just over three minutes, is a dedicated watch reel, for sure.
Whereas, 'I Got Nothin' to Hide: A Look at Daytona's Most Vibrant Drug Dealer' (1080p; 5:58) focuses, obviously, on the character of Pam and is also an interesting, and very vibrantly colorful watch, trust me!
Oh, and as for the 'Gag Reel' (1:38), introduced in rhyme by Zac Efron whilst "driving" a car, it's chock full of dirty dick near-jokes, flubbed lines, weird body movements and a weird three-finger-salute that Robert De Niro has to perfect to get the scene finally right!
In closing, and as aforementioned, 'Dirty Grandpa' definitely marks a rather low point for the careers for both Zac Efron and Robert De Niro, but definitely isn't what I consider one of the worst movies I've ever had the chance to either watch for pleasure or review.
After all, it does succeed at least bringing some laughs. However, the effort of the two leads do not always prevail. For comedy fans, this film may be worth a try, but definitely won't please everyone, especially those who are looking for Robert De Niro in a more solid comedic form. This is a Widescreen Presentation (2.40:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:
“Lessons in Seduction” Featurette
“Filthy Filmmakers Who Have No Shame” Audio Commentary (Blu-ray™ Only)
“The Filthy Truth: The Making of Dirty Grandpa” Featurette
“Daytona Heat” Featurette
“I Got Nothin’ to Hide: A Look at Daytona’s Most Vibrant Drug Dealer” Featurette
Official 'Dirty Grandpa: 4K Ultra HD+Blu-ray+Digital' Trailer