( Max score: 100 )
One drunken night, two friends admit that they wish they had the other's life. Mitch (Reynolds) thinks Dave has it all: a beautiful, loving family and a high-paying job at a prestigious law firm. But Dave (Bateman) thinks Mitch's stress-free life without obligation or consequence is the real dream come true. The next morning they wake up, hungover, in each other's bodies, and proceed to freak out! With time not on their side, Mitch and Dave comically struggle to avoid completely destroying each other's lives before they can find a way to get their old ones back.
Mitch (Ryan Reynolds) and Dave (Jason Bateman) grew up best friends, but as the years have passed they've slowly drifted apart. Dave is an overworked lawyer, husband and father of three, that has fallen into what would best be described as a rut. Mitch is a single, foul mouthed, semi-employed man-child who seeks gratuitous sex at every turn while shirking any responsibility that comes his way. To Mitch, Dave's life, a beautiful wife (Leslie Mann), kids who adore him and a high-paying job at a prestigious law firm, is just a bit too much work. To Dave, living Mitch's stress-free, sexually demeaning life without obligation or consequence would be a dream come true. Following a drunken night out together, Mitch and Dave's worlds are turned upside down when they awaken to find that they have switched bodies. Despite the freedom from their normal routines, and exposure to one another's lifestyle the guys soon discover that the grass isn't always greener.
When I saw the trailer for The Change-up I couldn't help but feel that it looked like nothing more than a rehashing of film's like Freaky Friday, Like father like son and Vice versa. After watching it I would say that my initial impressions are essentially true however whereas those movies take more of a family friendly approach The Change-up is most definitely an adult themed comedy. The humor is crass, the bad language is pervasive and the sexually driven content is frequent. If that is your cup of tea then you're in for a treat. I can't say that it is necessarily my cup of tea but there were times that this movie just cracked me up. Not every gag is fresh and the nudity is pretty gratuitous but the situational laughs and briery dialogue is what makes it. I am most definitely a fan of both Jason Bateman and Ryan Reynolds and watching them, especially Bateman, play against type was a hoot. There's a little formulaic sentimentality (which isn't out of place) and the fun loving chemistry among the principle cast members is obvious. Leslie Mann and Olivia Wilde provide excellent eye candy, along with two pretty memorable scenes (!) but it is Bateman and Reynolds that seal the deal. I won't go into which scenes I found to be the best but would rather leave that up to everyone's interpretation. The Change-up probably won't make anyone's top ten favorite film list but it's an ostentatious, over the top, and naughty guy flick that takes an age old formula and spins it out of control. Both the theatrical cut (which I watched) and an unrated version, that adds an additional five minutes, are included.
This film contains pervasive strong crude sexual content, language, some graphic nudity and drug use.
The Change-up comes to Blu-ray Disc from Universal Studios Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 20 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 3.7 Mbps.
This is an excellent video presentation that boasts plenty of high level detail, strong contrast, deeply saturated colors, and three dimensional acuity. Blacks are punchy and stand out when onscreen with mixed content. Visual perspective in low lighting and darkened areas is estimable. The combination gives dark scenes appreciable depth. Images are dynamic, boldly colorful, clearly drawn, and perfectly suited for the source material. The lossless DTS-HD MA soundtrack has good dynamic range and detail rich clarity that enables the detection of subtle background sounds within the acoustic environment created by the surround mix. Dialogue is firmly planted in the center channel which clearly renders voices and effects with appropriate distinction and tonal balance within the front soundstage. Low frequency effects aren't intense but the subwoofer is kept busy as it works in tandem with the rest of the system to appropriately convey the low level bass associated with the film's recorded elements.
The body switching premise has seen its share of productions and The change-up doesn't break new ground in that regard. It does manage to take that oft used formula and combine it with an adult theme, solid cast and raucous script to deliver a surprisingly funny film that on a number of occasions had me in stitches. It comes to Blu-ray Disc from Universal Studios Home Entertainment featuring top notch high definition video, satisfying DTS-HD Master Audio sound quality and a middling assortment of bonus material that offers cast/crew interviews and a glimpse behind the scenes. The Change-up is far from the best filmmaking to come out of Hollywood but I had lots of fun with it and recommend it to genre fans.