Forgetting Sarah Marshall appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this single-sided, double-layered DVD; the image has been enhanced for 16X9 televisions. Expect a good but unexceptional transfer.
Sharpness usually appeared acceptably accurate and detailed. At times, however, I found the image to come across as a little fuzzy and soft, with lesser definition seen in some of the wide shots. Nonetheless, most of the movie appeared clear and appropriately focused. Moiré effects and jagged edges presented no concerns, but I noticed some light edge enhancement at times. No print flaws materialized; the film remained clean and fresh.
In terms of colors, the flick went with a moderately subdued set of tones. Hues stayed on the natural side, with a mild golden feel to things that fit the Hawaiian setting. Within those parameters, the tones looked fine. Blacks were dark and firm, while shadows appeared clear and well-developed. The image didn’t really excel, but it was good.
As for the film’s Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack, it offered a functional effort and that was all. Of course, I didn’t expect a dazzling soundfield from this sort of comedy, and I got exactly what I anticipated. In terms of effects, general ambience ruled the day. Surround usage stayed limited; the back speakers gently fleshed out various settings but did no more than that.
In those forward channels, the music provided nice stereo separation and opened up the mix reasonably well. There wasn’t a whole lot of activity or movement, but the effects conveyed a passable sense of space and place. The track functioned appropriately for the story.
Audio quality appeared fine. Dialogue was consistently warm and natural, and speech displayed no concerns related to edginess or intelligibility. Effects were a minor component of the mix, and they seemed appropriately subdued and accurate; there wasn’t much to hear, but the various elements were clean and distinct. The music came across as acceptably distinctive. This was a standard “comedy mix” and became a decent reproduction of the material.
When we head to the set’s extras, we open with an audio commentary from director Nicholas Stoller, writer/actor Jason Segel, producer Shauna Robertson, executive producer Rodney Rothman, and actors Mila Kunis, Jack McBrayer and Russell Brand. (Actor Kristen Bell also briefly shows up via phone.) The track looks at cast, characters and performances, story issues and influences, shooting in Hawaii and other spots, editing and changes made for the extended cut, and a mix of production anecdotes.
With so many participants, we expect a rollicking affair, and that’s largely what we get here. The commentary includes a lot of jokes and looseness, but it never becomes chaotic or disjointed. This isn’t the most informative affair, but it gives us a good look at the movie and entertains.
Like all DVDs for Apatow-produced flicks, we get plenty of cut footage. We find six Deleted/Extended Scenes that fill a total of eight minutes, 34 seconds. These include “Scooter” (0:46), “Lamp 1” (1:33), “Lamp 2” (2:02), “Darald and Wyoma at the Luau” (0:50), “Airport Goodbye” (2:04) and “’What’re You Gonna Do Now?’” (1:19). Clips two and three flesh out the Aldous/Sarah relationship a little more, while “Luau” adds to our knowledge of the newlyweds. “Scooter” offers an alternate intro to Peter’s first post-breakup sexual conquest, while “Goodbye” and “Now” give a bit more exposition toward the film’s end. None are particularly valuable, though I like “Scooter” just because it’s more efficient than the scene in the final flick.
More cut material comes from Line-O-Rama. It offers a seven-minute and 50-second collection of alternate lines. These mostly come from scenes that made the flick but provide different takes. They’re a lot of fun and often more amusing than the bits that ended up in the final cut.
After this we find a five-minute and 45-second Gag Reel. Some of these provide alternate lines, but they’re usually the standard goofs and giggles. Still, enough nutty moments emerge to make them moderately enjoyable.
Briefly seen in the movie, the DVD includes the entire music video for “We’ve Got to Do Something”. I like it as a curiosity, but it probably amuses more in its edited format since its gags wear thin before long. Still, I’m glad the DVD put it here.
Next we get a view of a short Table Read. This three-minute and 42-second clip shows a rendition of “Dracula’s Lament”, the song Peter performs at the Hawaiian club. This means the scene focuses almost exclusively on Segal and Kunis; we see other actors but don’t from them. It provides a mildly interesting glimpse behind the scenes but isn’t anything special.
The Making of A Taste for Love runs six minutes, 18 seconds gives us info about the Dracula musical featured in the film. We hear from Segel, Stoller, Rothman, Robertson, producer Judd Apatow, music supervisor Jonathan Karp, Peter Brooke and Muchael Oosterom of Jim Henson’s Creature Shop, executive producer Richard Vane, and actor Bill Hader. It delivers a few details about A Taste for Love and its creation. Don’t expect a lot of depth, though; we hear a smattering of interesting thoughts but that’s about it.
Next we find seven minutes and 14 seconds of Raw Footage. This shows the “video chat” between Peter and his stepbrother as they discuss Peter’s time in Hawaii. It’s fun to see both sides of the scene at the same time, so this becomes a cool extra.
A few ads open the DVD. We get clips for The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior, Leatherheads, Burn After Reading, The Incredible Hulk and Blu-Ray Disc. The disc also features the trailer for Forgetting - and it’s the red-band version, so it’s naughtier than most.
At no point does Forgetting Sarah Marshall become a bad movie, but it seems like a mediocre one. Indeed, it always feels like something that I should enjoy more than I do; its entertainment value just doesn’t hit the expected levels given the folks involved. The DVD provides good picture, audio and extras, so I can’t complain about the release itself. I just don’t have a lot of positive sentiment for the movie itself.