Cedar Rapids, Blu-ray (2011)

by | Jul 7, 2011 | DVD & Blu-ray Video Reviews | 0 comments

Cedar Rapids, Blu-ray (2011)

Starring: Ed Helms, John C. Reilly, Sigourney Weaver, Anne Heche, Isiah Whitlock Jr.
Directed by: Miguel Arteta
Studio: Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment [6/21/11]
Video: 1.85:1 for 16:9 1080p HD
Audio: English DTS HD-MA 5.1; Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Extras: Seven featurettes (“Convention Connection”, “Mike O’Malley – Urban Clogger”, “Tweaking in the USA”, “Wedding Belles – Crashing a Lesbian Wedding”, “Top-Notch Commercial”, “Fox Movie Channel Presents – Writer’s Draft Phil Johnson” and “Fox Movie Channel Presents – Direct Effect Miguel Arteta”); Six deleted scenes; Gag reel; Theatrical trailer; Previews; BD-Live content; Digital copy on sep. disc
Length: 87 minutes
Movie Rating: ***½         Video Rating: ****         Audio Rating: ****

Tim Lippe (Ed Helms) is a naïve small-town insurance agent from the Midwest.  After the company’s star agent kills himself, Lippe is charged with the task of saving the company by attending an insurance convention in Cedar Rapids, Iowa and securing the prestigious “Two Diamond” Award.  Lippe has never been out of his small town surroundings and is blown-away with the sights and sounds taking place in the “big city” of Cedar Rapids.  Not long after checking into the hotel, Lippe finds himself smitten with the sexy, but married, Nebraskan insurance agent Joan Ostrowski-Fox (Anne Heche) and humbled by his convention-experienced roommates, the straight-laced Ronald Wilkes (Whitlock Jr.) and the party-happy Dean Zeigler (Reilly). 

During the convention, Lippe has several wild experiences ranging from crashing a lesbian wedding to partying with a prostitute at a crystal meth house.  Lippe also learns that the insurance industry can be corrupt and he ultimately must decide just how far he is willing to go to win the Two Diamond Award.  While the movie does have some crude (but yes, also very funny) scenes, “Cedar Rapids” has an overall sweet and tender tone.  Fans of the television show “The Office” will likely enjoy this film as Tim Lippe’s personality is reminiscent of both Andy Bernard (Helms’ character on “The Office”) and Andy Stitzer (fellow Office cast mate Steve Carell’s character in “The 40 Year Old Virgin”).  John C. Reilly, as always, is hilarious in the movie.  One of the better comedies of the year, “Cedar Rapids” is worth checking out.  Recommended.
The overall high definition video quality of this Blu-ray disc is very good.  Images are crisp and exhibit fine detail.  Black levels are velvety-dark throughout the film.  Colors are warm and rich with fully-saturated hues.  Picture defect mastering is near perfect with no major flaws or compression artifacts.  The overall audio quality of the English DTS 5.1 track is also very good.  The soundtrack predominantly favors the forward soundstage.  Dialogue is natural sounding, always intelligible, and properly emanates from the center channel.  The surround channels are selectively utilized for the music score and ambient sound effects.  The LFE channel is used sparingly but has some kick when engaged.  

— Calvin Harding Jr. 

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