I like Hugh Grant. I like Sarah Jessica Parker. Combined they could make an incredible romantic comedy. Unfortunately, Did You Hear About The Morgans? Is not that film. But that’s not to say I didn’t have a great time watching it. My roommates and I played a little game trying to predict what would happen next. And since the script is so ridiculously predictable we got a lot of mileage out of the game. I actually wish we had made it a gambling game, I think I could have cleaned up!
The film starts in New York. We meet Meryl and Paul Morgan (Parker and Grant). She’s a hot boutique realtor and he’s some sort of high-level lawyer. They’ve been separated for 3 months now and Paul wants to have dinner so they can talk. They have their high-strung assistants work out a time and place for the meeting. (At this point I predict that their assistants will become romantically involved). So the Morgans have their dinner and Meryl tells Paul that she still can’t trust him because he slept with another woman. (My roommate predicts that Meryl has also cheated but just hasn’t told Paul yet). After leaving the restaurant, the couple witnesses a shocking murder. U.S. Marshal Lasky (Seth Gilliam) shows up and in the worst performance I’ve ever seen in a major movie, tells the Morgans that they’ll need to be placed in witness protection.
Before long Paul and Meryl are flown to the tiny town of Ray, Wyoming and given new identities. When they get off the plane, they look at the posters on the wall at the airport. There is one advertising an upcoming rodeo and one giving pointers on how to survive a bear attack. (I predict that the big “showdown” of the film will occur at the rodeo and we all predict that the Morgans will have a bear encounter at some point). After studying the posters for a bit, they are met by Clay and Emma Wheeler (Sam Elliott and Mary Steenburgen). They’re the local sheriff and deputy and they’ve been given the job of watching over the Morgans.
Since this is a plot we’ve all seen a million and one times, I don’t feel bad telling you what happens next. The small town folks open their arms to the newcomers. The Morgans fall back in love with each other even after Meryl admits that she slept with someone else. They have the bear encounter we all predicted. The killer shows up at the rodeo and the good people of Ray overpower him. And when they get back to New York, their assistants have become an item.
Not only is the script bad but the acting is too. It has this high school play feel to it which is strange since all of the stars have been outstanding in other projects. It’s almost like they knew this film was going to be bad so they didn’t give it their best effort. It’s too bad because this cast could have really done something special given the proper material.
Did You Hear About the Morgans? arrives on Blu-ray with a 1080p MPEG-4/AVC encode framed at 2.35:1. This isn’t a bad transfer, but it sure isn’t the best either. There a few inconsistencies I found on several parts of the movie. First, we have the softness in several scenes. Colors are warm and well reproduced specially during those wide shots of the country. Skintones are a bit too rosy in certain scenes. The darker scenes can sometimes be deep and inky, while other times they feature a dark gray. Don’t be fooled, Did You Hear About the Morgans? looks decent on Blu-ray.
Did You Hear About the Morgans? arrives on Blu-ray with a 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio lossless track. The audio included is a tad bit better than the video it features less inconsistencies. Keep in mind the type of genre this film is and you will instantly know that the audio will only attempt to fit it well. In this case, the track makes justice to the film. The dialogue is clean and clear from the beginning. The rears are used for ambient effects and they help create a nice soundfield. The bass is used in a few scenes considering the film is not really necessary, but it only adds to the film. Overall this track serves its purpose rather well.
The movie might have been bad but the Special Features had me laughing out loud. I definitely enjoyed them more than the film.
Deleted Scenes -There isn’t anything exciting here. The deleted scenes are as unfunny as the rest of the film.
Outtakes – These are almost entirely scenes of Parker, Grant, and Steenburgen giggling uncontrollably. This probably explains the high school play feeling the movie has.
Commentary with Director Marc Lawrence and Stars Hugh Grant & Sarah Jessica Parker – This was my favorite part of the entire Blu-Ray. Here we discover that Lawrence, Grant, and Parker actually realize how bad the film is. They make fun of it throughout and their commentary is absolutely hilarious. There are quips like “This is the part where most of the audience probably walked out” and “That fashion designer made a beautiful dress for me but she probably doesn’t like being associated with this movie”. It made me feel good that they’re all able to laugh at themselves.
Cowboys and Cosmopolitans: The Stars of Did You Hear About The Morgans? – Sarah Jessica Parker, Hugh Grant, Sam Elliott, and Mary Steenburgen talk about their experiences filming the movie. There’s some really funny stuff in here!
Park Avenue Meets the Prairie: The Fashions of Did You Hear About The Morgans? – The costume designer and his assistants talk about how they came up with the different styles featured in the film. In a movie where so many things went wrong, the costumes were actually something done right. This is an interesting piece discussing what went into all the outfits.
A Bear Of A Scene – This is a behind-the-scenes feature focusing on the bear encounter. There are some neat shots of the bear and his trainers but the best part is Hugh Grant talking about the bear. He calls him “queeny” and goes on explaining how. I was laughing so hard that I had tears in my eyes!
I had such a great time watching this Blu-Ray with my friends that I really want to recommend it. But I just can’t do that in good conscience. This film could be for you if you’re looking to watch something so bad that it’s good. But if you’re actually looking for quality, then you should skip Did You Hear About The Morgans?