Jul 052020

Selena is a well made biopic featuring two incredible performances from Jennifer Lopez and Edward James Olmos, both deserving of more award recognition than they received.



— Warner Archive Collection —


Genre(s): Drama, Music, Biopic
Warner Archive | PG/Unrated – 128 min. / 134 min. – $21.99 | May 19, 2020

Date Published: 07/05/2020 | Author: The Movieman

Directed by: Gregory Nava
Writer(s): Gregory Nava (written by)
Cast: Jennifer Lopez, Edward James Olmos, Jon Seda, Constance Marie, Jacob Vargas

Features: Featurettes, Outtakes, Theatrical Trailer
Slip Cover: No
Digital Copy: No
Formats Included: Blu-ray
Number of Discs: 1

Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 5.1)
Video: 1080p/Widescreen 2.40
Subtitles: English SDH
Disc Size: 46.54 GB
Total Bitrate: 42.80 Mbps
Codecs: MPEG-4 AVC
Region(s): A, B, C

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Blog Post.
The opinions I share are my own.

THE MOVIE — 3.75/5

Plot Synopsis: In this biographical drama, Selena Quintanilla (JENNIFER LOPEZ) is born into a musical Mexican-American family in Texas. Her father, Abraham (EDWARD JAMES OLMOS), realizes that his young daughter is talented and begins performing with her at small venues. She finds success and falls for her guitarist, Chris Perez (JON SEDA), who draws the ire of her father. Seeking mainstream stardom, Selena begins recording an English-language album which, tragically, she would never complete.

Quick Hit Review: Selena is a very well acted, especially from Jennifer Lopez and Edward James Olmos, the latter probably deserving of a Supporting Actor nomination, telling the rise of the talented singer crossing the barriers of Mexican and American music only to be slain before she rose to certain superstardom that awaited.

While the film does feature quality performances from most involved, the direction from Gregory Nava (who would re-united with Lopez on 2006’s Bordertown) was a bit amateurish at times, though employed many of the techniques that plagued 1990s cinema from slo-mo, jerky camera movements. In addition, and can’t say how it should’ve been done, but Selena’s death seemed more tacked on and the development between her and Yolanda Saldívar could’ve been expanded a bit, however the focal point of the film about the singer’s raise to fame rather than the latter, which was out of fraud (and probably shame).

Albeit not perfect, I will say Selena does tell an uplifting story of a young woman’s rise through tough love and adversity in at least a unique way compared to other bio-pics, and also under the difficult circumstances.



This release comes with two featurettes: Selena: Queen of Tejano (18:56) and Making of Selena: 10 Years Later (30:25), one on the life of the singer/songwriter and the other specifically on the movie with interviews by the cast and crew, as well as Selena’s family. Also included are some Outtakes (12:09) and the Theatrical Trailer (2:27).


VIDEO – 4.5/5

Selena debuts on Blu-ray through the Warner Archive program and while there was no mention of a new transfer, the 1080p high-definition picture does look rather good considering it’s been over 20 years since its release. Detail on the close-ups are sharp and nicely defined and colors have some good vibrancy to them, such as Selena’s exotic outfits which show off nice reds, blues and deep dark levels on the black dresses.

AUDIO – 4.5/5

Nice to have a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track here where the musical sequences, particularly in the concert venues, make excellent usage of all the speakers, while the quieter moments are more centralized with maybe some ambient noises coming through the rear channels. All in all, it’s an effective lossless track.


OVERALL – 4.0/5

Selena is a well made biopic featuring two incredible performances from Jennifer Lopez and Edward James Olmos, both deserving of more award recognition than they received. Adding to that, can’t imagine the pain the family went through putting this together so soon after the tragedy, but doing so to quell the numerous tabloid rumors that permeated the market back then.

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