Interview, The

Featured In Issue 195, March 2015

WSR Score3
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Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
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Seth Rogen & Evan Goldberg
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In The Interview, Dave Skylark (Franco), a celebrity talk show host of a popular tabloid TV show and his producer Aaron Rapaport (Rogen) long to make a jump to serious news. After discovering that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (Park) is a fan of the show, they snag an exclusive in-person interview with him in an attempt to legitimize themselves as journalists. As Dave and Aaron prepare to travel to Pyongyang, the unlikely pair are recruited by a covert CIA agent (Caplan) to embark on a mission to take out the reclusive dictator.

Special features include commentary by James Franco and Seth Rogen; 14 deleted, extended, and alternate scenes (HD 25:21); eight featurettes: Directors Of This Movie (HD 06:41), Puppy Power (HD 01:56), Here Kitty (HD 05:19), Joking Around (HD 01:54), Spies Among Us (HD 07:24 ), Randal Park Audition Tape (HD 05:14), Dating A Dictator (HD 01:10), and Getting Into Character (HD 04:47); a blooper reel (HD 07:03); Line-O-Rama alternate takes (HD 09:32); The Discovery Channel TV special Naked And Afraid (HD 13:47); upfront previews; and an UltraViolet digital copy.

The 2.39:1 1080p AVC picture was photographed with the Arri Alexa Plus camera system in anamorphic Panavision. The imagery is darkly saturated with strong hues that exhibit an unnatural, but stylized appearance that is vibrant. Dark clothing, especially blacks, are often over-saturated, crushed, and inconsistent. Strong primaries are evident, with vibrant highlights. Fleshtones are varied as well, but generally over-saturated, depending on lighting. Contrast is generally acceptable, with decent shadow delineation. Resolution is excellent, especially during close-ups that exhibit sharpness and intricacy. Overall, the stylization is visually engaging, though, darkly rendered.

The DTS-HD Master Audio™ 5.1-channel soundtrack is dialogue focused but complemented with effective atmospherics and sound effects that provide surround envelopment. The diverse music score is aggressively enveloping, with excellent fidelity. Deep bass enhances the dynamics during the more energized segments of the music and sound effects, especially in the battle scene toward the end, with aggressively directional gun and tank fire. The gunfire and tank shelling rip through the soundfield. Dialogue is generally well integrated spatially. This is a fun and engaging soundtrack that plays humorously on the stereotypical characterizations.