Death Becomes Her was a flick that I’ve been always meaning to watch, but I just never got around to seeing. Thankfully, Scream Factory has released Death Becomes Her on Blu-ray, under their Collector’s Edition branding. The Blu-ray doesn’t have much in the way of features, but the movie is a whole lot of fun. It’s filled with some wonderful performances from Meryl Streep, Goldie Hawn and Bruce Willis. It’s got a lot of laughs and some early 90’s CGI work that is actually pretty damn impressive. If you want to see what this flick is all about and if the Blu-ray is worth owning, read on…
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RUN-TIME: 103 min
ASPECT RATIO: 1.85:1
AUDIO: English 5.1 DTS-HD MA, English 2.0 DTS-HD MA
PRODUCTION DATE: 1992
RELEASE DATE: April 26, 2016
[tabby title=”Plot Summary”]
“A comedy with teeth and high style! Death Becomes Her has dazzling special effects and the stars are fun to watch.” – David Ansen, Newsweek
Three-time Academy Award® winner* Meryl Streep, Oscar® winner** Goldie Hawn and Golden Globe winner+ Bruce Willis are deathly funny in Robert Zemeckis’ outrageously entertaining comedy about greed, vanity, sex, immortality, life… and death.
Two narcissistic arch rivals (Streep and Hawn) discover the ultimate accessory – a potion that will keep them forever young – when they meet a mysterious enchantress (Isabella Rossellini, Blue Velvet) with deep ties to the Hollywood elite. But they get more than they bargained for when their newfound beauty only intensifies their vanity – and rivalry – in this fast-paced and very funny dark comedy that the Chicago Tribune calls “diabolically inventive.”
*1979: Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role, Kramer vs. Kramer; 1982 Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role, Sophie’s Choice; 2011: Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role, The Iron Lady
**1969: Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role: Cactus Flower
+1987: Best Performance by and Actor in a TV Series: Moonlighting
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Goldie Hawn plays Helen Sharp, who is always being one-upped by her frienemy Madeline Ashton (Meryl Streep), a beautiful woman who is afraid of getting old. Helen loses her soon to be husband, Ernest Menville (Bruce Willis) to the embrace of Madeline and after years and years of remorse and binge eating, she plans to get back at Madeline for stealing him away from her. In the meantime, Madeline has gotten old and wants to be young again and the only way she can do that is by taking a mysterious potion offered by a basically nude goddess. She takes the potion and instantly starts de-aging, but unfortunately for her, this means that if something bad was to happen to her, say a flight down some stairs, she would be dead, but not able to die. (I think you know where this movie is headed). In the meantime, Helen has crafted a nefarious plan to get back at Madeline but is unaware of Madeline’s new found ability to not die. Cue a wacky amount of backstabbing and laughter.
Death Becomes Her might be one of the lesser known Robert Zemeckis films, but it still comes through with plenty of laughs and quirky scenes. The acting from everyone is top shelf campy quality. The little easter eggs that littered throughout the second half of the movie is a nice touch. You’ll be playing spot the “thought to be dead” famous person at the included party scene. I think the biggest praise I can give the movie, though, is to the special effects. For the time, they are extremely well done, with a mix of practical and early CGI. The two mix together rather nicely and makes for a wonderful treat for effects fans.
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There are a few rough areas with the Death Becomes Her Scream Factory transfer (well, technically Universal), but if you can forgive a bit of softness issues here and there, the transfer is still rather solid. The audio fares much better. As for the special features, this isn’t a featured packed Collector’s Edition, with only a roughly 25-minute interview, although it’s a new interview with a fair amount of people. Unfortunately, the top three stars couldn’t be bothered to talk about the movie, but if you’re interested in the behind the scenes stuff, you’ll be happy with what you’re given. Sadly, no deleted scenes are included, which is a shame as this movie is said to have been edited after initial negative test screenings.
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- NEW The Making Of Death Becomes Her Featuring Interviews With Director Robert Zemeckis, Writer David Koepp, Producer Steve Starkey, Director Of Photography Dean Cundey, Production Designer Rick Carter And SFX Artists Lance Anderson And David Anderson
- Vintage “Making-Of” Featurette
- Photo Gallery
- Original Theatrical Trailer
Death Becomes Her was a nice surprise and gave me a great laugh. The Blu-ray from Scream Factory isn’t perfect, but it’s the best option for checking out the movie, so what more could you ask for.