Michael Scott

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Someone to Watch Over Me


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Movie: :4stars:
Video: :4.5stars:
Audio: :3.5stars:
Extras: :2stars:
Final Score: :4stars:



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Movie

Even though Ridley Scott can be hit or miss sometimes with his period piece films, he’s always been one of the most highly respected directors in Hollywood. While he’s most notably known for films like Alien, Blackhawk Down (which is getting a 4K release very soon I might add), Gladiator and many more genre hits, he has been known to stick his fingers into multiple pies over the decades. Thelma & Louise is an example of him jumping out of his normal motif and doing something different, and 1987’s Someone to Watch Over Me fits into that “odd” category for the famous director. I actually hadn’t ever seen Someone before, but had heard about it over the years. The trailer made it seem like those 90s erotic thrillers, and while I love those Michael Douglas 90s erotic thrillers, I just never made the time to pick this one up when it was out on DVD. So viewing this Shout Factory Blu-ray was a virgin experience for me ever seeing it on home video.

My conclusion. I wish I had seen Someone to Watch Over Me years ago. I don’t know whether I’ve just been jaded as a reviewer, or just felt like something different, but Someone (I’ll shorten it to that title for the rest of the review) was a breath of fresh air, blending a solid cop thriller with a forbidden romance in true 80s fashion. All the while making it feel entertaining and exciting. I have to admit, my biggest draw to watching Someone was due to the fact that it starred Mimi Rogers in the role that put her on the map, being that she was a relative unknown at the time. I had a celebrity crush on Mimi for YEARS (I’m sad to say that I own the 90s remake of Lost in Space just because she’s in it) and when I noticed on the cover that it starred her, I pretty much had to review the film.

Rich Manhattan socialite Claire Gregory (Mimi Rogers) witnesses the murder of her friend at the hands of mobster Joey Venza (Andreas Katsulas, most notably known for playing G’kar on Babylon 5), and is forced to go under police protection until she can testify at Venza’s trial and put him away for life. New detective Mike Keegan (Tom Berenger) is assigned to protect her, but soon finds himself torn between his wife and the beautiful, but terrified, high class socialite tempting him. Unfortunately for all involved, Venza gets off on a technicality and he now has Claire in his sights and will stop at nothing to kill her before she puts him away for good. Now Mike is forced to choose between the woman he swore to love and honor, and the women that’s assigned to protect.
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The new interviews for the disc provide some backstory with Mimi Rogers and why Ridley Scott chose a relative unknown. According to one of the interviews the studios were trying to get away from using mega stars in their productions, and creating new intellectual property with lesser known actors in order to differentiate themselves from the standard mass media perception by the public. Not only that, they could create NEW stars and actually get away with paying less (something I’m sure was very appealing to the bean counters at the studios). Choosing Mimi Rogers was a wise choice, as it did exactly what they wanted. It created a new star that gained a rather large following through the late 80s and early 90s (although her career slowed down around the turn of the century). It was a bold move by Scott, but it payed off as Mimi is the perfect blend of sultry femme fatale, and sympathetic victim. She has that sort of Sharon Stone vibe to her at times, but she’s so sweet and likable that you empathize with why she and Mike begin their relationship.

Berenger does solid work as Mike, but it’s really Mimi’s and Ridley’s show here. Scott did a fantastic job with the direction, adding in the typical cop thriller story line with the soon to be popular “erotic thrillers” of the 90s that Michael Douglas would popularize. Andreas Katsulas has always been one of my favorite lesser known characters actors due to Babylon 5, and he adds a delicious sense of criminal evil to the film, making his show off with the Keegans and himself at the end of the movie all the more satisfying.




Rating:

Rated R by the MPAA




Video: :4.5stars:
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Someone is a Sony licensed title, and while I have no clear cut information on the resolution of the master, you can be assured that Sony gave Shout Factory a pristine looking master to use for this Blu-ray. The disc looks WAY better than I was expecting for a low budget 80s film, and sports some fantastic detail levels. The movie looks a little bit washed out and drab in the opening apartment party scene with the Keegans celebrating Mike’s promotion to Detective, but soon after that it clears up to become a very sharp and clean looking film. There’s a definite 80s level of grain over everything, but it’s wonderfully organic looking and doesn’t once look obnoxious or noisy. Fine details are exquisite, from the little patterns on Mike’s tie (before it gets ditched), to the smile lines on Mimi Rogers’ face. Backdrops are gorgeous looking, and the New York City night life is appropriately detailed, even in the darkness. There’s a few soft focus shots here and there, but this is more an issue with the filming style, as they don’t seem to be an issue with the transfer.







Audio: :3.5stars:
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The 2.0 DTS-HD MA audio mix for
Someone is a little less exciting, but still more than capable considering the stereo source. The track has good dialog, no sounds of distortion, hiss, or other abnormalities, but it is kind of uneven in some ways. Things don’t hit as hard as you’d expect them too, and sometimes dialog feels a bit drowned out by the score, which DOES hit as hard as you would expect. It’s almost as if the dialog and basic ambiance of the movie was shot at a different volume level than the score, and with completely different dynamics. Everything is clean and clear, but the unevenness of the dialog and score interaction can be a bit awkward.





Extras: :2stars:
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NEW interviews with Writer Howard Franklin and Director of Photography Steven Poster.
- Someone…To Shoot A Movie: A Look Back With Steven Poster
- Someone…To Write A Script: A Look Back With Howard Franklin









Final Score: :4stars:

Someone is not the best or most “epic” Ridley Scott’s filmography, but it is well done thriller that is highly under rated in my personal opinion. Mimi Rogers absolutely shines as Claire, and the fairly predictable plot is still highly enjoyable. I’ve always loved Ridley Scott’s films that are less period piece, or epic sci-fi films and Someone to Watch Over Me is a great hidden gem out of his career. The Shout Factory Blu-ray comes with great audio and video, and a modicum of extras, that while small, are very informative. Definitely recommended.


Technical Specifications:

Starring: Tom Berenger, Mimi Rogers, Lorraine Bracco, Jerry Orbach, John Rubinstein, Andreas Katsulas, Mark Moses
Directed by: Ridley Scott
Written by: Howard Franklin
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 AVC
Audio: English: DTS-HD MA 2.0
Subtitles: English SDH
Studio: Shout Factory
Rated: R
Runtime: 106 Minutes
Blu-ray Release Date: March 12th, 2019






Recommendation: Good Watch

 
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Jack

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Thanks for this Michael, I love this movie and did not know it was re released. I must have.
 

Jack

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I am reminded of the great work Andreas Katsulas did in The Fugitive with Harrison Ford. It must br tough that he had to give up an arm for that film.
 

Michael Scott

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lol, I forgot that was Andreas.... my mind immediately goes to Babylon 5 when I think of him
 

Jack

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I had forgot he was in B5 until you mentioned it. That was such a brilliant show.
 

Michael Scott

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agreed. it was way ahead of it's time for a serialized sci-fi show. the only show that rivals it in terms of long term serialized stories is Farscape
 

Jack

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I have always loved Ridley Scott films as he had a way to challenge my visually AND mentally. Ok I will admit it I even really liked Legend, ok there I admit it. In this film he was able to depict the differences between classes to the point wherein the viewer can find themselves and have the knowledge that all classes of people have Issues. The Bathroom scene gave me chills so real it was.
I agree this film was not in Scott’s normal repertoire but it works well.
 

Michael Scott

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yeah, this has a very "raw" feeling to the villain and victim relationship. It's not overly stylized, he's not a mustache twirling cliche. He's just a creepy mobster who does what mobsters do. I'm actaully shocked it took me this long to watch the fillm
 

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Thanks for the review. Never saw this so will look for it. Thanks.
 

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I will watch this one soon. Thanks for the review.
 
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