I’m not entirely sure how Aloha got off the ground but as one of the subjects of the Sony hack, it might’ve been doomed from the get-go and for good reason: it’s a film with a haphazard plot but worst of all, the cast share absolutely no chemistry in spite of featuring some fine actors. Bottom line, this is a movie destined for the bargain bin and later air on USA.
Genre(s): Drama, Romance, Comedy
Sony | PG13 – 104 min. – $30.99 | August 25, 2015
THE MOVIE – 2.0/5
I guess every director has to have a misfire and no doubt Aloha was that for writer-director Cameron Crowe. It apparently wasn’t enough to be a romantic dramedy but had to also add a weaponized satellite component for some reason.
The story follows Brian Gilcrest (BRADLEY COOPER) a former celebrated military contractor returns to Hawaii in the hopes of restoring his reputation after a serious incident that occurred years earlier in Kabul. He’s there to oversee the launch of a satellite funded by billionaire businessman Carson Welch (BILL MURRAY), his former employer whom had screwed over. However, it’s not all business. With annoying no-nonsense military liaison Allison Ng (EMMA STONE) constantly at his side, Brian reconnects with his old flame Tracy (RACHEL MCADAMS), who is now married to a Navy pilot (JOHN KRASINSKI) and has two kids, a young son and teenage daughter.
For some reason, still a bit confusing to me, Brian and Allison travel to a remote area to meet with the king among a tribe of nationalists who do not recognize the United States authority. He needs the king’s blessing, via some negotiating for wireless internet and land, to build a new Air Force pedestrian gate. This part is nonsense for the story at large and probably would’ve made for an interesting story on its own…
Back in Honolulu, the passion between Brian and Tracy is still there especially since her marriage isn’t in the greatest place as her husband isn’t that big into things like… talking. However, Tracy isn’t the only interested party as the once frosty relationship between Brian and Allison has thawed and the two begin a sweet romance of their own…
All is well until Allison finds out about Brian’s secret mission with Welch involving launching a satellite sold as a way to connect remote regions of the world and instead is a weaponized satellite with a nuclear payload or some such nonsense. Honestly, this is one of the more bizarre aspects and yet not the biggest problem with this shamble of a movie.
What’s more surprising about Aloha is that it came from the same director as Almost Famous, Jerry Maguire and Vanilla Sky, the latter of which I loved though I’m sure I’m in the minority. However, his output of late hasn’t been all that stellar between Elizabethtown and We Bought a Zoo. But unlike his stinkers, this one has a funnier smell by comparison with a haphazard and dumb plot and in spite of a respectable cast; none of them shared any chemistry be it between Cooper and McAdams or Cooper and Stone with Emma Stone probably playing one of the more annoying characters.
One can only hope Aloha was just a misfire for Crowe and the entire cast.
SPECIAL FEATURES – 4.0/5
This release comes with a semi-glossy slip cover. Inside is a redemption code for the Digital HD copy.
Audio Commentary with writer-director Cameron Crowe who is an engaging personality and does well even on his own as the majority of solo tracks tend to be too dry.
The Untitled Hawaii Project: The Making of Aloha Documentary (1:13:51; HD) is a lengthy behind-the-scenes feature, split into three parts, delving into how the project came to be. This is probably better than movie itself.
Original Opening & Alternate Ending (13:28; HD) are different from the final film and comes with optional commentary with Crowe.
The Awe of Space (2:53; HD) is a featurette on space exploration narrated by Crowe.
Ledward Kaapana: Music is Everything (14:40; HD) – This featurette focuses on the music of Hawaii and its importance for the culture.
Uncle Bumpy (5:53; HD) is an interview with the Head of State of the Nation of Hawaii.
Mitchell’s Film (2:00; HD) is cam footage from the young actor who played the son in the film.
Gag Reel (6:26; HD) filled with line flubs and all around on-set goofiness.
Deleted Scenes (11:22; HD) – Here we get two scenes that were trimmed to didn’t make the cut.
VIDEO – 4.5/5
Sony flies to Aloha on Blu-ray airlines presented in its original theatrical 2.39 widescreen aspect ratio and with a 1080p high-definition transfer. The movie might not have been great, but this HD transfer showcases the Hawaiian landscape quite well with lush colors throughout along with the sharp and well defined detail levels. There were no noticeable instances of aliasing, artifacts or banding making for a good looking transfer.
AUDIO – 4.0/5
The movie comes with a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track which is adequate for a film of this nature. The bulk of the audio is dialogue which is clear through and through with most of the depth coming with the select music and score choices, some of which outlaying the Hawaiian culture. It’s not what I’d call a great lossless track or anything by considering the genre, it’s more than sufficient.
OVERALL – 2.5/5
Overall, I’m not entirely sure how Aloha got off the ground but as one of the subjects of the Sony hack, it might’ve been doomed from the get-go and for good reason: it’s a film with a haphazard plot but worst of all, the cast share absolutely no chemistry in spite of featuring some fine actors. Bottom line, this is a movie destined for the bargain bin and later air on USA. As far as the Blu-ray is concerned, it’s a decent enough package with good video and audio transfers and a nice selection of bonus material to check out.
Check out some more screen caps by going to page 2. Please note, these do contain spoilers.