Fury isn’t the best war drama around, not even in the top 5, but it’s still well made and features a great cast, with Brad Pitt delivering a fine performance (one of his best in some time), that elevates the writing while Ayer’s direction keeps the pacing just right.
Beverly Hills Cop
Genre(s): Comedy, Action, Crime
Paramount | R – 105 min. – $25.99 | December 1, 2020
Date Published: 11/25/2020 | Author: The Movieman
Paramount provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Blog Post.
The opinions I share are my own.
Note: The screen captures were taken from the Blu-ray disc and do not represent the 4K Ultra HD transfer.
THE MOVIE — 3¾/5
|Note: Portions of this was copied over from previous Blu-ray reviews.
Beverly Hills Cop is a film as engrained into 1980s cinema as any of the others like Ghostbusters, Lethal Weapon and Back to the Future (to name a few). Is it particularly fantastic like the aforementioned films? I’d say no, but thanks to Eddie Murphy, it certainly has the entertainment value to make it as memorable as it is. The sequels on the other hand…
Axel Foley (EDDIE MURPHY) is a wise-cracking, fast talking Detroit police detective who often takes it upon himself to solve crimes without the approval of his supervisors as we first meet him trying to sell stolen cigarettes. After getting chewed out by his boss, he goes home to find an old friend, and felon, Mikey (JAMES RUSSO) inside his apartment. The two catch up on old times and upon their return, the two are ambushed, Axel is knocked unconscious and Mikey takes a bullet to the head. You see, Mikey stole some expensive bearer bonds from some bad people. Now, despite being told not to involve himself in the murder investigation, Foley takes some vacation time and goes out to Beverly Hills where Mikey had been working for a ruthless man named Victor Maitland (STEVEN BERKOFF) and quickly discovers that Vic is involved with his friend’s murder.
While in Beverly Hills, between taking in the sites, odd fashions in the glitzy town and reconnecting with old friend Jenny (LISA EILBACHER) who had gotten Mikey the job to begin with, he also runs into the local detectives Billy Rosewood (JUDGE REINHOLD) and John Taggart (JOHN ASHTON) who have been assigned by their boss (RONNY COX) to tail Foley knowing he’s in town on unofficial business.
The movie isn’t great but as a vehicle for rising star Eddie Murphy, coming off of 48 Hours and Trading Places in ’82 and ’83 respectively – not to mention the turkey Best Defense starring Dudley Moore –, it’s pure entertainment balancing the sometimes obnoxiousness with the character and great charm which makes me question where Murphy’s career has gone in the 2000s. So while a character like Axel Foley doesn’t quite measure up to Riggs or Murdoch in Lethal Weapon, it’s still the a fun part to watch even when the story isn’t particularly in-depth.
Beverly Hills Cop was helmed by Martin Brest whose body of work is fairly limited with only 8 films on his resume dating back to 1972 and ending in 2003 with the notoriously awful Jennifer Lopez/Ben Affleck crime-comedy, Gigli. Brest also has done some decent work with Scent of a Woman, the moderately underrated Meet Joe Black and of course probably his second best known movie, Midnight Run.
SPECIAL FEATURES – 3¾/5
This release comes with a glossy slip cover and inside is a redemption code for the Digital HD copy.
Feature Commentary – Director Martin Brest provides an informative, albeit low-key, track. Brest keeps things light while offering up his recollections of making the film. It’s not a great commentary and it would’ve been better if there were others included but you do get an idea about filmmaking at least.
Deleted Scenes (3:49) – Only two scenes here, nothing terribly noteworthy and likely cut for pacing reasons.
Behind the Scenes: 1984 Interviews (9:49) with Eddie Murphy and Martin Brest during press tours.
BHC Mix Tape ’84 containing key music moments from the film including “The Heat is On”, “Neutron Dance”, “New Attitude”, “Do You Really”, “Stir It Up” and “Nasty Girl”.
Beverly Hills Cop: The Phenomenon Begins (29:11) chronicles the origins of the film from script to casting (who they wanted in the roles and who almost took the roles) to filming. It’s a basic by-the-numbers making-of but still provides some info on the movie. It features interviews with Jerry Bruckheimer, Martin Brest, Eddie Murphy, Judge Reinhold and others.
A Glimpse Inside the Casting Process (9:37) – As the title suggests we look at how BHC was cast from the casting director and what they look from the big roles to the extras.
The Music of Beverly Hills Cop (7:49) tackles the iconic score and theme we associate with the film and, in fact, with the 1980s.
Location Map (TRT 12:01) is a several mini-featurettes talking about the various locations/sets used throughout Beverly Hills.
Last up is the Theatrical Trailer (2:33).
VIDEO – 4¼/5
|Paramount releases Beverly Hills Cop onto 4K Ultra HD and presented with a 1.78 widescreen aspect ratio and a 2160p high-definition transfer, though I suspect this might’ve been upconverted from a 2K scan but the press release does state it was remastered, so presumably not the same picture from the Blu-ray a couple years back. In any case, the transfer does look fine, detail is a tad better compared with the Blu-ray while colors aren’t terribly vibrant, in one scene in the apartment early on, was a bit dark, but otherwise there are a few pops of color here and there, just nothing I’d describe as vibrant. The picture at the very least is clean free of debris, scratches or other signs of film damage.
AUDIO – 3¾/5
|The DTS-HD Master Audio track doesn’t exactly boast a kick ass soundtrack but certainly it’s suitable. The dialogue levels were alright though pretty flat as are some of the audio effects like gunfire but the music, including the catchy BHC theme, comes through each channel quite nicely.
OVERALL – 4/5
Beverly Hills Cop is quintessential 1980s action from the electronic score to the basic look and feel. It also was the perfect vehicle for a then on the rise Eddie Murphy who probably was at his best. The 4K Ultra HD combo pack has some decent features while the video and audio transfers are quite good.
The screen captures came from the Blu-ray copy and are here to add visuals to the review and do not represent the 4K video.