The Night Before (DVD): Review

Film

The Night Before, a silly yet surprisingly jovial film about a group of friends who set out for one last boys night out, in the tradition they started when growing up together.

Bringing together Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Seth Rogen and Anthony Mackie, the film offers a moment of escape from the real world. The plot is straight forward, unless you count the trio bumbling their way through things a twist. The humour is slightly awkward, but it tends to endear itself non-the-less.

The Night Before is not a bad film, yet there doesn’t seem to be a huge hook that would pull it out the category of mediocre, and put it above the rest. A bit of fun, a bit of escape, and perchance a way to evoke nostalgia and encourage some thoughts pondering the “good old days”.

Disc

The Night Before is available now, for purchase on disc, in South Africa.

Video

Video is encoded at a high average bitrate, meaning there are no visible artefacts. The video is smooth, even in the scenes with faster movement and action. Colour are vibrant, with no bleed.

Viewers with the necessary hardware or software, who wish to scale up to a larger or higher resolution screen, are able to do so.

Audio

Audio is presented in a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack, and while the genre of the film does not lend itself to extensive use of the surround channels, these do serve to expand the on-screen world, and further draw the viewer in to the story.

Navigation

Navigation is plain, and simple, with static images for menu backgrounds. There is some looped music on the menu screen. Although basic, navigation is easy.

Bonus Features

Gag Reel: A few laughs from set, when things go wrong. Not too much to see here, other than the lead actors laughing, but their silly laughter is strangely contagious.

The Spirit Of Christmas: A look behind the scenes, and where the idea and story for the film came from. The cast, director and producers share a bit on their Christmas experiences, when growing up.

Drunkest Santas On The Block: The two Santa characters, who are disrespecting the spirit of Christmas. We get to see a bit of the filming of this confrontational scene, as well as some additional footage, cut from the film.

Midnight Mass With Nana: More behind the scenes of another scene, on location, with some input from the key players in the scene sharing their characters involvement.

Whale Juice: How the dream / hallucination sequences was filmed, and the fun had by the actors as they improved their lines, and tried their best to deliver the silly jokes without laughing.

Making One Epic Party: The longest of the featurettes, sharing the most of the process used to make the film, with interviews and input from cast and crew. While still in line with the feel that all these bonus features were designed as teasers to promote the film, rather than insight after the fact, Making One Epic Party by far gives the most insight into the creative process.

Previews: Trailers for The Wedding Ringer, The Final Girls, The Walk and This Is The End, which happen to feature the cast of The Night Before.

Published by Andrew Germishuys

Founder of SAMDB, Andrew has worked full time in the film industry since the early 2000's. He has trained as an actor, completing his LAMDA Gold Medal, and attending many courses in Cape Town acting studios, with masterclasses with some of the international industries top directors, producers and filmmakers. Working as an actor and armourer in the film and television industry have given Andrew a great balance of skills across the board when it comes to the entertainment industry. Catch him on Twitter: twitter.com/andrewgerm_za And IMDb: www.imdb.com/name/nm5390453/

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