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Skin Deep

review by Zach B.

 

 

Rating: R

Running Time: 101 minutes

Starring: John Ritter, Vincent Gardenia, Alyson Reed, Julianne Phillips, Chelsea Field

Written and Directed by: Blake Edwards

 

Studio: Warner Bros.

Retail Price: $19.98

Features: Cast and Crew Film Highlights, Theatrical Trailers

Specs: 2.35:1 Anamorphic Widescreen, English 5.1 Dolby Digital, English Subtitles, French Subtitles, Spanish Subtitles, English Closed Captions, Scene Selection (25 Scenes)

Released: June 4th, 2002

 

 

After Zach (John Ritter - and don't you love it when movie characters have similar names to your own?), a has been writer of sorts (sounds like me sorta), who has a Pulitzer Prize, is an acclaimed author and likes to drink as well as party (is that my future?) is having woman trouble. A lot of woman trouble. Zach can't seem to finish his latest book (me again, actually. Though do buy my first book!), and now that this womanizer is a free bachelor now, he gets into a series of reckless situations with many women, all while trying to quit his womanzing, alcoholic and self-centered ways to win back his ex-wife, who he still truly loves.

"Skin Deep" does have its fun moments, but unfortuantly, it's no "10." Perhaps Blake Edwards tries to hard with his comedies. He has the right ideas, it's just usually his execution isn't that great. I suppose that's what "Skin Deep" is like. The movie is pretty one dimensional. It's basically about a screwed up man with his own self-centered, egotistical ways which gets in the way of his own work and love life. Of course, our protagonist must realize the errors of his ways to make up for it all. There's no depth, there's not too much feeling and Zach's exploits get rather old.

Like I said, the movie does have its moments which are pretty fun, but the thing is, despite a decent premise, it just goes wrong. Even flawed Blake Edwards comedies were more fun than this. There are some decent slapstick moments and good one-liners and exchanges, but many of them actually aren't that funny, or add up to much. It's like you wait for something, hoping for a big pay off and that doesn't come. And that did disappoint me. It grows tiring and just boring after a bit. The movie fails to expand on what it has, and just becomes a repeat of your usual tired guy/woman situations, clichés and offers nothing new to what's been done before. Given the talent of Edwards, this really could have been so much more.

Still, its charming cast makes up for it somewhat, and does a very good job with the material. It was probably Ritter who jumped at the chance to work with Edwards, and Ritter does a very good job here. He has good chemistry with his supporting cast as he recounts his womanzing ways, and it's a pretty fun role. Ritter is very believable and captures the arrogant, self-serving ways of Zach. He has great mannerisms, gives off that swarmy attitude and it's just a fun role, which he works very well with. I think it's one of his better comedic performances. Supporting performances Alyson Reed, Chelsea Field and Julianne Phillips add to the fun and work well with their roles too. So if you want a fun comedy that's uh, not really fun but deals with a guy getting his against a bevy of ladies, and like Edwards, than "Skin Deep" may be for you.

 

The 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer is pretty good. There are some blemishes, scratches, pieces of dirt and other little things on the print. Fleshtones are good, while color sautiation is rather bold and fits well with the scheme. There is edge enhancment, grain, shimmering and noise. There is a faded look to the transfer, and is too soft for my tastes. Still, despite the flaws, it comes across pretty good. It's just nothing majorly special.

 

The only mix included here is a newly mastered 5.1 Dolby Digital mix in English. It's not a bad remix (trust me, I've heard worse) and I suppose the slapstick materail and 1980s love theme songs call for it. Sadly, it sounds largely mono and doesn't really add up to much. There is some background noise which is somewhat distracting, while the dialogue, while easy to hear, sounds pretty faded out, is low. The music isn't well mixed, and the sound effects only sound decent. Fidelity is average too. Overall, this remix wasn't worth it, and comedy mixes aren't great to begin with usually anyway. This track's dynamics are overall annoying, actually, as it feels a bit stiff and artificial at times. Also included are English closed captions, Spanish subtitles, French subtitles and Spanish subtitles.

 

Not much. The usual boring Cast and Crew Film Highlights, an anamorphic widescreen Theatrical Trailer for the movie (it's a pretty bad trailer) and Theatrical Trailers for other Morgan Creek movies on DVD: "Ace Ventura: Pet Detective," "American Outlaws," "Chill Factor," "The In Crowd," "Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves" and "True Romance." All are in anamorphic widescreen and two channel sound, except "American Outlaws" which features some kickin' 5.1 Dolby Digital output.

 

Despite the good performances, "Skin Deep" isn't very deep. It becomes pretty tiring and is truly not one of Blake Edwards' best. This DVD edition supports lackluster extras and only a decent presentation. If you're interested it's an okay rental if you're in the mood, but if you're a fan of the film, it's worth it for you.