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Nicholas Stoller
Jason Segel, Kristen Bell, Mila Kunis, Russell Brand, Bill Hader, Liz Cackowski, Maria Thayer, Jack McBrayer, Jonah Hill
Writing Credits:
Jason Segel

A comedy about getting dumped, and taking it like a man.

Peter (Jason Segel) is a struggling musician who finds his world turned upside down when his TV celebrity girlfriend, Sarah Marshall (Kristen Bell), dumps him for a tragically hip rock star.

Box Office:
Opening Weekend
$17.725 million on 2798 screens.
Domestic Gross
$62.877 million.

Rated NR

Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
French DTS 5.1
Spanish DTS 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

118 min. (Unrated Version)
111 min. (Rated Version)
Price: $14.98
Release Date: 9/30/2008

• Both Theatrical and Unrated Cuts
• Audio Commentary with Director Nicholas Stoller, Writer/Actor Jason Segel, Executive Producer Rodney Rothman, Producer Shauna Robertson, and Actors Mila Kunis, Jack McBrayer and Russell Brand
• 11 Deleted/Extended Scenes
• “Line-O-Rama”
• “Sex-O-Rama”
• “Drunk-O-Rama”
• “Puppet Breakup”
• Gag Reel
• Music Video
• Video Diaries
• “Dracula’s Lament” Table Read
• “Russell Brand: Aldous Snow” Featurette
• “The Making of ‘A Taste for Love’” Featurette
• Raw Footage: Video Chat
• Trailer
• “Crime Scene” Outtakes
• “Sarah’s New Show Alts” Outtakes
• “The Letter ‘U’” Outtakes
• “U-Control” Interactive Feature


Panasonic TC-P60VT60 60-Inch 1080p 600Hz 3D Smart Plasma HDTV; Sony STR-DG1200 7.1 Channel Receiver; Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player using HDMI outputs; Michael Green Revolution Cinema 6i Speakers (all five); Kenwood 1050SW 150-watt Subwoofer.


Forgetting Sarah Marshall [Blu-Ray] (2008)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (March 20, 2016)

After three straight Judd Apatow-supervised efforts yanked in more than $100 million apiece in the US, the streak sagged with 2008’s Forgetting Sarah Marshall. While this one certainly didn’t bomb, its $63 million US gross made it a disappointment when compared to its predecessors.

And I can’t blame audiences for their relative snubbing of Forgetting, since it didn’t add new luster to the old themes. While 2007’s Knocked Up was a “coming out” party for Seth Rogen, Forgetting brings his Freaks and Geeks co-star Jason Segel to the fore. He plays Peter Bretter, a musician who makes his money as the composer for a TV series called Crime Scene: Scene of the Crime. Perhaps not coincidentally, Peter dates Sarah Marshall (Kristin Bell), the show’s star.

After five years together, Sarah abruptly dumps Peter in favor of Aldous Snow (Russell Brand), a British rock star. This sudden turn for the worse hits Peter hard, so he decides to get away from LA and take a vacation in Hawaii.

This doesn’t work out well since it happens that Sarah and Aldous also wind up in the Aloha State – and at the same resort, in fact. The movie follows their interactions, Peter’s attempts to find romance with resort employee Rachel Jansen (Mila Kunis) and connected concerns.

On the surface, Forgetting has as much going for it as its predecessors. And that’s probably the problem: a sense of staleness and ennui ensues. The movie seems to hit the right notes, but they come with the feeling that we’ve seen them all. There’s not much here that feels fresh or makes the flick stand out when compared to the others.

This results in a somewhat tedious tale. Like the other flicks, Forgetting aims for some laughs with outrageous moments, though perhaps not to the same degree. This one’s big moment actually comes early in the film, as Segel provides rare – and not welcome – male full-frontal nudity. It’s the most provocative scene, but I don’t think it works.

Maybe it’s just my aversion to the sight of cocks, but the sequence is too uncomfortable to be funny. I know that the filmmakers want the laughs that come with awkwardness, but I think the scene’s simply not very amusing.

Like most efforts under the Apatow umbrella, Forgetting goes on too long. This sucker last nearly two hours, and it grows tiresome well before it finally ends. We go through endless shots of Peter in Hawaii, and they don’t add up to much. Yes, I understand the desire to develop the characters and their interactions, but tedium results pretty rapidly.

I liked Segel as a supporting character with Rogen, but I don’t know if he has the charisma to take the lead. Maybe he just works better as a secondary character. He doesn’t provide a poor performance here, but he simply can’t carry the film. It always feels like there’s a void at the top, as Segel doesn’t make us terribly invested in Peter.

At no point does Forgetting Sarah Marshall become a bad movie, and it has some mild laughs. However, it just doesn’t ever turn into anything terribly involving. It’s too long and slow to keep us occupied.

Note that this Blu-ray includes both the theatrical version (1:51:00) and an unrated cut (1:57:46). About half of the latter’s extra footage comes from a scene in a Hawaiian yoga class taught by Kristen Wiig.

The rest of the added material appears to consist of short bits here and there; the yoga sequence was the only significant change I noticed. It’s actually a decent scene, mostly due to Wiig’s funny performance.

The Disc Grades: Picture B-/ Audio B-/ Bonus B+

Forgetting Sarah Marshall appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray. The movie came with an unexceptional image.

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 reasonably clear and appropriately focused. Moiré effects and jagged edges presented no concerns, and I saw no edge haloes. 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. This wasn’t a bad presentation, but it came across as a bit spotty.

As for the film’s DTS-HD MA 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.

How does the Blu-ray compare to the DVD version? Audio was a bit warmer, and visuals seemed somewhat smoother and better defined. Don’t expect a revelation, though – the Blu—ray topped the DVD but not by a huge margin.

The Blu-ray offers the DVD’s extras and adds some as well. 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.

The Blu-ray allows viewers the option to examine this piece as a visual commentary as well. This simply shows the participants as they record the track. It’s a mostly boring way to experience the discussion.

Like all discs for Apatow-produced flicks, we get plenty of cut footage. We find 11 Deleted/Extended Scenes that fill a total of 19 minutes, 24 seconds. None are particularly valuable, though some amusement results. In particular, I like a long, bizarre sequence in which Sarah gets stuck on a very slow “runaway horse” – it never would’ve fit the final film, but it’s funny.

Essentially another deleted scene, Puppet Breakup lasts two minutes, 29 seconds. It shows a vampire puppet version of the Peter/Sarah break-up scene. It’s moderately entertaining.

More cut material comes from Line-O-Rama. It offers a seven-minute, 49-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.

In the same vein, Sex-O-Rama (2:42) and Drunk-O-Rama (2:29). Those offer additional alternate dialogue for scenes related to Peter’s sexual and alcoholic escapades. They provide some amusement.

After this we find a five-minute, 44-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 disc includes the entire music video (3:47) 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 disc put it here.

Next we get a view of a short Table Read. This three-minute, 12-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, 17 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.

For a look at a supporting character, we go to Russell Brand: Aldous Snow. The five-minute, 55-second piece involves Robertson, Stoller, Segel, Brand and Karp. We learn about how Brand’s casting changed the character as well as aspects of his performance. This turns into a tight little piece.

Next we find seven minutes, 13 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.

With The Letter “U”, we find a three-minute, 45-second clip. It shows Aldous Snow on a Sesame Street style show; he chats with a five-year-old about the letter “U”. It becomes goofy fun.

Two bits pop up under Crime Scene. “Alt Scenes” (2:17) gives us more outtakes from Sarah’s TV series, while “Hunter Rush Line-O-Rama” (1:53) offers alternate dialogue from the Billy Baldwin character. Both seem amusing enough.

After this we get Sarah’s New Show Alts. The two-minute, 15-second reel provides other possibilities for the new series on which Sarah starred after Crime Scene. This turns into an enjoyable collection.

21 Video Diaries occupy a total of 35 minutes, 16 seconds. In these, we hear from Segel, Stoller, Brand, Bell, McBrayer, Rothman, Kunis, and actors Paul Rudd, Jonah Hill and Maria Thayer. These offer glimpses of the shoot and work fairly well. They give us nothing especially significant, but they're fun.

U-Control offers two options. “Karaoke” pops up three times, as we get it during “We’ve Got to Do Something” (chapter 1), “Hula Medley”, “Home on the Range”, “Inside of You” (all three in chapter 8), “Dracula’s Lament” (chapter 10) and “A Taste for Love” (chapter 19). These clips let us hear the songs without vocals so we can sing them ourselves. If that works for you, have a party!

“Picture-in-Picture” offers shots from the set, rehearsals and comments from Apatow, Stoller, Segel, Robertson, Vane, Kunis, and Brand. They discuss the project’s origins and development, story/character areas, cast and performances, and locations. The rehearsal clips prove to be the most interesting, and they help make this an interesting collection.

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 Blu-ray offers decent picture and audio along with a strong set of supplements. This turns into a pretty good release for a sporadically enjoyable film.

To rate this film visit the original review of FORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL

Review Archive:  # | A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-U | V-Z | Viewer Ratings | Main