It's Kind Of A Funny Story (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 8 Old 02-15-2011, 09:41 AM - Thread Starter
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The Review at a Glance: ( max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373697

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109941&d=1210373697

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )


Studio and Year: Focus Features- 2010
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 102 minutes
Genre: Comedy/Drama

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p/24

Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD MA 5.1, Spanish, French DTS 5.1, Dolby Digital 2.0
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Starring: Keir Gilchrist, Zach Galifianakis, Emma Roberts, Lauren Graham, Jeremy Davies
Directed by: Ryan Fleck & Anna Borden
Music by: Broken Social Scene
Written by: Ryan Fleck & Anna Borden (Screenplay), Ned Vizinni (Novel)
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: February 8, 2011

"Sometimes what's in your head isn't as crazy as you think."

Film Synopsis:

Zach Galifianakis, Keir Gilchrist, Lauren Graham and Emma Roberts star in this uplifting comedy about finding sanity in the most unlikely of places. Sometimes what's in your head isn't as crazy as you think - that's certainly true for Craig (Gilchrist), a stressed-out teenager who checks himself into a mental health clinic for some time out.

My Take:

'It's Kind Of A Funny Story' was a refreshing surprise. I came into this knowing nothing about the film, but I think Zach Galifianakis is a riot, so I was interested. When it was over I was glad it was not as much about the comedy as it was about finding levity in the tough situations life throws at us. For 16 year old Craig, played extremely well by Keir Gilchrist, it was the pressures of his teenage existence that build up to a point where he bikes his way to the emergency room and tells them he wants to kill himself. He is admitted for a mandatory 5 day stay, but the teen ward is closed for maintenance so he ends up in the adult ward. There Craig is taken under the wing of Bobby (Zach Galifianakis), who becomes a sort-or accidental mentor and finds a little romance with Noelle (Emma Roberts), and ultimately finds his own voice. I found this film, that is full heavy subject matter, to be a smarter than average light-hearted coming of age story. Its locale of a hospital mental ward was a interesting set-up for Craig to meet a crazy cast of charters and learn the life lessons his out-to-lunch parents never seemed to teach. Craig learns more about himself in these 5 days then he had in 16 years and decides to deviate from the path his father has been forcing on him for years.

Directors Ryan Fleck & Anna Borden (Half Nelson and Sugar) deliver lighter fare this time around, but still manage to keep their edge. This team seems to find humor in an alternative way, embracing a true to life indie vibe. What I found so enjoyable here was how real life this situation felt. They really did a great job keeping the film flowing, and picked a great soundtrack that includes Queen & David Bowie, Method Man and scored by Broken Social Scene. The chemistry between Keir Gilchrist and Zach Galifianakis was impeccable, and it was great to see Galifianakis shine in a role that showed a full gamut of emotions. Keir Gilchrist is a young actor to look out for, he really was this character on screen, and his transformation was played with a natural command and confidence. I really enjoyed the unexpectedly uplifting 'It's Kind Of A Funny Story', but suspect more so than most; It seemed to hit me just right.

Parental Guide:

Rated PG-13 for mature thematic issues, sexual content, drug material and language.

AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**

(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

Audio: 82

  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373694

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373698

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373697

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373697

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373697

Video: 90

  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373697

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373698

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373698

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=121037369
'It's Kind Of A Funny Story' comes to Blu-ray Disc from Universal Studios Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 22.2 mbps and DTS-HD MA 5.1 Surround Sound that has an average bitrate of 2.1 mbps.

Universal delivers a beautiful new Blu-ray release as 'It's Kind Of A Funny Story' is a looker. Its lightning and cinematography lends to a really natural look, especially considering the florescent lighting of inside a hospital ward. Fine details were evident all over this hospital, from the wrinkles in scrubs to Emma Roberts strands of hair. Black levels were quite strong with no problems exhibiting definition in shadows and the flesh-tones and colors broke through the pale yet realistic color scheme. The DTS-HD MA 5.1 Surround Sound was less impressive, but when the soundtrack kicked in it did wow a bit. The music elements were dynamic with a tight and controlled low end. These moments opened up the sound-stage that was usually a center focused dialogue affair. I noticed all dialogue was intelligible, even the mumbles of some of the secondary characters wandering in the background. This is a nice sounding track that wont blow you mind, as its not intended to.

Bonus Features:

  • (HD) A Look Inside It's Kind Of A Funny Story

  • (HD) It's Kind Of A Funny Story Premiere in NYC

  • (HD) Deleted Scenes

  • (HD) Outtakes

  • (HD) Trailers: A Man A Woman and A Noodle Shop, I Get Low, Made In Dagenham, You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger, Barney;s Version

  • BD Live enabled

  • pocket BLU Ap

Final Thoughts:

I really enjoyed 'It's Kind Of A Funny Story', but suspect more so than most; It seemed to hit me just right. I felt all the bases were covered, from a smart directing duo in Ryan Fleck & Anna Borden, some very fine and unexpected performances as well as a great soundtrack. Universal treats us to a gorgeous transfer here, that seems to showcase some nice choices on part of the production. The special features are nothing to...well...special, but worth a spin none-the-less. I easily recommend a rental here and I am glad to have this in my collection.


Lee Weber
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews

Reference Review System:

JVC DLA-RS50 3D 1080p High Definition Front Projector
Custom 1.3 Gain 128" 2.37:1 CinemaScope Screen
Marantz AV7005 Pre/Pro
Emotiva UPA7 Amplifier
Sony PS3 Slim Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Triangle Zerius Speakers (7.1)
SVS PC13-Ultra Subwoofer
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post #2 of 8 Old 02-15-2011, 10:46 AM
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I'm really excited to see this film. The trailer has been playing as part of a demo loop at the Future Shop I work at, and I always stop and admire how great the photography looks on all the different HD screens. Thanks for the great review!
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post #3 of 8 Old 02-16-2011, 08:49 AM
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Definitely going to check this one out.

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post #4 of 8 Old 02-16-2011, 09:14 AM
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Thanks, Lee.

Recently I've been steering towards more interesting, but also more obscure movies to whet my appetite.

This sounds like it's right up my alley. Thanks for reviewing it and bringing it to my attention.

Music so high you can't get over so low you can't get under it!
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post #5 of 8 Old 02-17-2011, 07:12 PM - Thread Starter
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post #6 of 8 Old 02-19-2011, 07:12 AM
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Watched this one last night and agree with Lee's review - it is spot on. And the title is fitting "Kind of funny..."

The soundtrack also provided a nice surprise. David Bowie's track highlighted it for me and the sound came through my system impressively.

This one is worth watching- and while it won't turn into a cult flick - I can see some replay value here.
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post #7 of 8 Old 02-20-2011, 08:26 AM
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I watched this last night on Apple TV and really enjoyed it. Somewhat quirky--my favorite kind of movie--espeicaly for this kind of movie. I thought this was Emma Robert's best performance. All the characters were highly interesting.

The rock out was pretty cool too--I was always confused as to who did that song as it sounds like David Bowie--but is often credited to Queen--so both of them makes sense to me now.


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post #8 of 8 Old 02-21-2011, 07:59 AM
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I liked the movie, but didn't love it. It didn't quite feel real enough to work as a drama for me, and it wasn't funny enough to just be an all out comedy. Definitely worth a rent though.
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