Get Him to the Greek
- Street Date:
- September 28th, 2010
- Reviewed by:
- Aaron Peck
- Review Date: 1
- September 28th, 2010
- Movie Release Year:
- 114 Minutes
- MPAA Rating:
- Rated R
- Release Country
- United States
The Movie Itself: Our Reviewer's Take
Aldous Snow needed a spin-off, he really did. Comedian/actor Russell Brand first brought the fictional rock star to life in 'Forgetting Sarah Marshall.' Snow was celebrating seven years clean and sober in that movie, until he was given a drink on accident. 'Get Him to the Greek' begins with the rapid descent of Snow's stardom. From his breakup with his girlfriend, to run-ins with the paparazzi, to his insanely racist new song "African Child." A headline skirts across the screen, "'African Child' worst thing to happen to Africa since Apartheid." A once great rock star is slowly descending into irrelevancy.
Aaron Green (Jonah Hill, who was also in 'Forgetting Sarah Marshall' but doesn't play the same character) is a music executive who works for Sergio (Sean Combs). Sergio is a demanding record label owner, and wants his employees to think up some ideas that will bring in revenue, because in his words, "I've got six kids! Do you know how many pairs of Air Jordan's six black kids wear?" Sergio is a man on a mission, and is surprisingly well acted by Combs, who hasn't really shown his comedic skills until now.
Aaron, who is a lifelong fan of Snow, thinks that an anniversary concert of Aldous Snow's famous Greek Theater concert will generate millions of dollars in revenue. Sergio likes the idea, there's only one catch. Aaron has to fly to London to pick up Aldous and bring him back to LA for the concert with a stop in New York for the 'Today Show.'
Aaron is shy, quiet, and reserved. Aldous is anything but. Brand is a fantastic actor, and embodies the role of Aldous so perfectly that you wonder if he's actually just playing an eccentric version of himself or if that's just him. Aldous has long since become addicted to drugs again and wanders around life with no direction. He's still insanely rich, loves to party, and tries to fill the void in his life with drugs and booze.
'Get Him to the Greek' is a gross-out, over-the-top R rated comedy about what it's like for a regular person to be thrown head first into the life of a rock star. It's produced by Judd Apatow, and directed by Nicholas Stoller who directed 'Forgetting Sarah Marshall.' Stoller knows the Aldous Snow character and it shows. What could easily have become a vulgar stream of bodily function jokes, becomes much more than that (that's not to say those jokes aren't there though).
Yet Aaron and Aldous share something in common though, they've both lost the girls that they loved. Even though they don't show it much, they're both lonely. Aldous has everything in the world, but still in the end has no one except his music. The genius of the character is that Brand doesn't play him as a nihilistic, stupid rock star. Aldous is actually very intelligent and reasonable, but the drugs have taken their toll. A telling scene occurs when Aaron, fed up with Aldous' drug use, spills his heroin on the floor. This is the only time we really see Aldous upset. This is what drugs have done to him.
Brand is called upon to perform a few rock songs, that actually sound like real-life rock songs only with a hint of 'Spinal Tap' wit written into them. Kind of a tongue-in-cheek jab at the music industry in every one of the songs preformed. The song "I'm Coming Up" is actually pretty inspiring, but funny at the same time. A hard feat to achieve.
'Get Him to the Greek' is much more than a sophomoric gross-out comedy. There's substance here. Aaron and Aldous feel like real characters going through real problems, not just clichéd caricatures, which they easily could have been. Brand and Hill are good actors. Hill has finally shown us here that he can carry a movie. He's stepped out of the supporting character shadow and into the spotlight. Brand is infinitely watchable. He's like a modern version of a Monty Python character. His comedy is layered, thoughtful, and funny.
I was surprised by 'Get Him to the Greek.' I'm always apprehensive about character-based spin-offs, but it works here. I guess if there's any supporting character that needed his own story to be told it's Aldous Snow.
The Blu-ray: Vital Disc Stats
'Get Him to the Greek' comes labeled as the 2-Disc Unrated Collector's Edition. It comes complete with a slip cover and a keepcase that contains both the BD-50, and a standard DVD that contains some of the special features.
The Video: Sizing Up the Picture
The 1080p presentation of 'Get Him to the Greek' offers a AVC encode and, for the most part, a spectacular looking image. The beginning of the film, which is the music video for "African Child," is given a yellowish tinge, but not to worry, it's just for the effect of the music video. After that the movie becomes bright with an abundance of nicely saturated colors that simply shine. The warm palette is reminiscent of most modern comedies. Detail is striking. Both Aaron and Aldous have stubble, but you can tell that Aaron's is longer while Aldous' is nicely groomed. Textures are well done too (Furry Walls!), take for example when Aaron wakes up in London after their night of partying and realizes they're late for their flight. The tiny stitching on the pillow he's sleeping on is intricate and completely visible. Tighter, woven patterns and textures, like Aldous' knit cap, prove to be a slight problem. As Aldous sits in the airport talking to Aaron, his cap causes slight aliasing that makes the cap appear to be shimmering as he moves his head around.
Everything else about the look and feel of this video presentation is top-notch. The concert scenes look fantastic, and with all those flashing lights and quick camera movements, not a hint of artifacting was spotted. The image is also free of and dirt or specks that could detract from pleasurable viewing.
The Audio: Rating the Sound
The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 mix accompanying 'Get Him to the Greek' services the film well enough, but still has a few instances where it doesn't quite measure up to where it should.
For much of the film you'll notice that the soundtrack, and all of its rock songs, are in need of a healthy soundfield in which to flourish. Here they do. The music from the soundtrack to the actual concert tracks performed by Brand are centered in the front with screaming crowds and echoing lyrics bleeding into the rears. LFE is nicely balanced too, giving the rock songs a good low bass emphasis when needed. Dialogue is nicely placed, with directionality working perfectly. Where the sound falls a little short is in the quieter conversations, mainly the conversation between Aldous and Jackie Q over the phone. They talk softly, and Aldous cracks jokes because of how Jackie responds to him. Only there are a few instances where you can't even hear her responses, therefore leaving you a little dumbfounded by Aldous' retort. This is my one nitpick in an otherwise full-bodied rock-centric sound design that not only delivers a more than serviceable audio presentation for a comedy, but also has its moments when it bursts into a full-blown concert Blu-ray.
The Supplements: Digging Into the Good Stuff
- Original Theatrical Cut (HD, 1 hr. 49 min.) – This is the original cut you were able to see in theaters.
- Extended Unrated Cut (HD, 1 hr. 54 min.) – A few minutes of gross-out humor have been added on in the unrated cut.
- Audio Commentary – Director Nicholas Stoller is joined by producer Rodney Rothman, and actors Russell Brand, Jonah Hill, Rose Byrne (Jackie Q), and Elisabeth Moss (Daphne). While it would have been nice to have both Diddy and Hill on the same commentary track, because of the great chemistry they have between each other, this is a funny, light-hearted track that carries with it the spirit of the movie itself.
- Getting Into Get Him Back to the Greek (HD, 32 min.) – Disregard the terrible name for this feature, just try saying that title three times fast. Anyway, this features a table read of the cast where a variety of jokes are spent during the reading. It's a hilarious feature.
- Getting in Tune With the Greek (HD, 6 min.) – An extended look at the ridiculous, yet very funny music video created for the beginning of the film.
- Music Videos (HD) – There was a lot of time and energy that went into creating all the music for this movie, but during the film some of the concert scenes had to be edited down in order to tell the story effectively. Here you get extended versions of those performances that you see in the film. They include: "Greek Concert 1999," "Greek Concert 2009," "The Today Show," "VH1 Storytellers: Furry Walls," "World Tour: Riding Daphne," "London 02 Concert."
- Gag Reels (SD, 10 min.) – Not really your standard gag reel. It's nice to see a gag reel that's funny for a change. Gag reels really all depend on whether or not you have comedic stars that are good at improving.
- Line-O-Rama (SD, 9 min.) – Exactly what it sounds like. "Line-O-Rama" is a quick montage of various funny lines from the movie.
- Alternate Intro: The Castle (SD, 6 min.) – This is a funny alternate opening that features a party being held to commemorate the release of "African Child."
- Alternate Ending: Riding Daphne (SD, 3 min.) – Just as funny as the alternate opening is this alternate ending. I think you can figure out what's going to happen here just from its title.
- Deleted Scenes (SD, 18 min.) – A wide variety of 17 deleted scenes are included here.
- Extended and Alternate Scenes (SD, 36 min.) – Whenever you're dealing with a great comedian like Russell Brand who just likes to riff on and on making up lines you're going to have a lot of extended material you'll have to cut down just because time won't allow it all in. Here are 22 separate extended or alternate scenes that didn't make it into the movie.
- Blind Medicine (SD, 2 min.) – A hilarious set of scenes from Sarah Marshall's new TV project 'Blind Medicine' starring Ricky Schroder. This is referenced in the film, but this feature provides even more laughs than the small reference did.
- Interviews (SD, 18 min.) – Interviews that didn't make it into the movie, but are hilarious and need to be watched. Seeing Aldous appear on 'The View' is hysterical.
HD Bonus Content: Any Exclusive Goodies in There?
- U-Control (HD) – Only offers the viewer the credits of who produced and wrote the songs you're listening to.
- Karaoke (HD) – Sing a long with the movie's music with 15 different songs from the film. Each song features sing-a-long subtitles at the bottom to help you out.
- Bonus Movie – As the annoying advertisement that plays whenever you put in the disc announces you can get a bonus movie that streams via BD-Live. Your choices are 'Life,' 'Uncle Buck,' or 'Dazed and Confused.' They can also be streamed on a smart phone with the Pocket Blu feature that's included.
- Cast Auditions (SD, 18 min.) – See the auditions for most of the main cast members.
Who knew P. Diddy could act? One of the many hilarious revelations from Nicholas Stroller's riotous comedy about rocking out and living it up. I liked 'Get Him to the Greek' a lot more than I thought I would. It reminds me of 'The Hangover' only, dare I say it, funnier. It's got the perfect balance of over-the-top humor, and sweet, honest life reflection. The video is almost as good as it gets for a comedy, the audio is just as well done with concert scenes sounding great. The special features are extensive and most of them are well worth watching, adding more laughs to the movie itself. Overall, 'Get Him to the Greek' on Blu-ray comes highly recommended.
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