Blu-ray
One to Avoid
1.5 stars
Overall Grade
1.5 stars

(click linked text below to jump to related section of the review)

The Movie Itself
0.5 Stars
HD Video Quality
1.5 Stars
HD Audio Quality
2 Stars
Supplements
2 Stars
High-Def Extras
0 Stars
Bottom Line
One to Avoid

Material Girls

Street Date:
March 29th, 2011
Reviewed by:
Review Date: 1
April 6th, 2011
Movie Release Year:
2006
Studio:
MGM/UA
Length:
97 Minutes
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG
Release Country
United States

The Movie Itself: Our Reviewer's Take

The Marchetta sisters (Hilary and Haley Duff) are young Los Angeles socialites. Think the Hilton sisters only with fewer sex tapes. The sisters are heirs to their family's cosmetics fortune. They live a life of luxury, and talk, like all valley girls, as if they're going to hyperventilate before their sentence ends. Don't worry there are plenty of "likes" and "totallys" peppered in there for good measure.

Can I just say, right off the bat, that 'Material Girls' is just awful. It's one of those movies that makes me lament, for even a moment, that I chose to become a movie critic. Sometimes this job isn't as glamorous as it sounds. Sometimes you have to suffer though Hilary Duff acting just how I imagine she acts in real life. Like a snobby, privileged, illiterate nit, who's high point of the day is getting her caramel macchiato delivered to her poolside.

Anyway, I know you're absolutely dying to hear what wonders await you in the plot of 'Material Girls'. The Marchetta girls are ready to inherit their dad's company, a cosmetic company that has netted hundreds of millions of dollars over its lifetime. Only, there's suddenly a scandal. One of the company's lotions is giving people rashes, the company's stock plummets. I always find it hilarious in movies when a scandal like this tanks a huge corporation in the blink of an eye.

The Marchetta sisters are soon thrust into the "real world" after the company begins to fold. They accidentally burn down their house, but thank heavens they saved the Tivo box. And, gasp their credit cards have been canceled and now they're forced to take public transportation. Oh the humanity!

As you may have guessed, the sisters set out to find out what really happened, and after digging they find out the scandal was a hoax. Sorry, spoiler alert! Although, if you're planning on watching this movie of your own free will and choice then you deserve to have it spoiled for you.

What else is there to say about 'Material Girls' other than it made me wish I was watching 'Little Fockers' instead. Yeah, that's how bad it is.

The Video: Sizing Up the Picture

Hmm, I wonder if this one was rushed to BD without any quality control checking it out. Maybe Fox and MGM thought that not many people would notice or even care if this movie looked like trash in high-def.

The movie was filmed in 2006, but with this 1080p AVC-encoded transfer you'd never be able to tell. Most of the time it looks like a forgotten flick from the early 90s. It's soft throughout, providing little to no detail. Colors are all wrong, with skin tones taking on an ugly copper tint. Noise pervades the entire viewing area, with very frequent specks and scratches popping up.

This is an all together ugly Blu-ray presentation.

The Audio: Rating the Sound

The audio isn't much better. The case insists that it's a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 mix, but listening to it you'd never be able to tell.

The sound is corralled in the front. Even busy parties and galas feature little to no surround sound. Dialogue sounds tinny and harsh – but that could just be that the Duff sisters have the most annoying vocal intonations known to humankind. The pop music that invades the soundtrack is light and breezy, but never really engages the listener. LFE is restrained, even when songs on the soundtrack call for it.

This audio presentation, like the video, and probably the Marchetta sisters themselves, is anemic at best.

The Supplements: Digging Into the Good Stuff

  • Audio Commentary — So, you bought 'Material Girls' and you liked it so much you want to watch it again, but this time with commentary. First of all, what is wrong with you? Second, don't bother with this commentary. Director Martha Coolidge provides a boring, flaccid commentary which discusses how totally awesome it was to work with the Duff sisters, and so on and so forth.

  • Getting to Know Hilary and Haylie as the Marchetta Sisters (SD, 10 min.) — A promotional tool where the Duff sisters can talk about how cool it was to work with each other on this film.

  • Cast of Characters: The Making of 'Material Girls' (SD, 10 min.) — The rest of the boring cast is trotted out so we can commence forgetting that any of them were in this movie.

  • 'Material Girls' Music Montage (SD, 2 min.) — A series of clips from the movie set to music. So fun.

  • Music Video (SD, 3 min.) — Hilary Duff performs "Play with Fire." I wish she would.

  • Trailer (SD, 2 min.) — The theatrical trailer is included.

HD Bonus Content: Any Exclusive Goodies in There?

There are no Blu-ray exclusives included.

Final Thoughts

After watching 'Material Girls' I immediately checked eBay to see if anyone was selling T-shirts that read "I survived 'Material Girls'." Alas, I couldn't find any. I may be the only one to have come out of this thing alive. Hopefully not too many people have been led to their doom by 100 minutes of Duff-induced torture. Video and audio are bottom of the barrel bad. Please, just avoid this one.

Technical Specs

  • 50GB Blu-ray Disc

Video Resolution/Codec

  • 1080p/MPEG-4 AVC

Aspect Ratio(s)

  • 2.40:1

Audio Formats

  • English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
  • Spanish: Dolby Surround
  • French: Dolby Digital 5.1

Subtitles/Captions

  • English SDH, Spanish

Supplements

  • Audio Commentary
  • Featurettes
  • Music Montage
  • Music Video

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