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Howard Franklin, Bill Murray
Bill Murray, Geena Davis, Randy Quaid
Writing Credits:
Howard Franklin

Three thieves successfully rob a New York City bank, but making the escape from the city proves to be almost impossible.

Box Office:
$17 million.
Opening Weekend:
$4,700,960 on 1596 screens.
Domestic Gross:

Rated R.

Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
English DTS-HD MA 2.0
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 88 min.
Price: $21.99
Release Date: 4/27/2021

• Trailer


-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
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Quick Change [Blu-Ray] (1990)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (April 11, 2021)

When I first saw 1990ís Quick Change theatrically, I viewed the movie as amusing but nothing special. However, it grew on me as the years passed, and more than 30 years after its release, I now see it as Bill Murrayís best flick.

Civil servant Grimm (Murray) tires of the messiness of life in New York. He decides to rob a bank so he, his girlfriend Phyllis (Geena Davis) and his dim-witted pal Loomis (Randy Quaid) can retire to a tropical island.

The first part of the movie shows the actual caper, while the second depicts their increasingly frustrating attempts to flee New York City. We watch all those complications along with the pursuit of Police Chief Rotzinger (Jason Robards).

I left my synopsis fairly vague for a couple of reasons. For one, the story doesnít need more detail than that; at its heart, Quick Change offers a basic plot that it expands with many terrific little character vignettes.

To some degree, the movie connects a series of skits into one piece. It does so well enough that it never feels disjointed, but in truth, thatís how the story works.

I also left out too many specifics because I really donít want to ruin the fun for new fans. Part of the filmís joy comes from the succession of ridiculous situations into which our three heroes Ė or anti-heroes, if you will Ė find themselves.

The movie avoids any semblance of realism with its goofy supporting characters. Among others, we get nasty mobsters, a weeping cabbie who speaks no English, and yuppies fed up with crime Ė all over the top, and all absolutely hilarious.

When I first saw Quick Change on release day in 1990, I thought it petered out after the bank robbery sequence. Those elements were so funny and distinctive that it seemed easy to view the rest as anti-climactic.

I was wrong, as the remainder of the filmís at least as good if not better. I wonít claim that every sequence soars, but more than enough of them succeed to make the movie insanely strong.

Over the last 31 years, actors like Kurtwood Smith, Tony Shalhoub, Victor Argo and Stanley Tucci have turned up in many different vehicles. No matter what they do, Iíll always think of them in their Quick Change roles.

Okay, I also think of Smith as Boddicker from Robocop, but I prefer him here. Quick Change boasts an amazing supporting cast, all of whom are absolutely wonderful.

And donít forget our leads. Does the role of Grimm do anything to stretch Murrayís traditional screen personality?

No, but I canít say that bothers me, as heís perfect for the role and awfully funny. Davis grounds the movie but also offers more than a few amusing moments, while Quaid adds heart as the sweet but incompetent Loomis.

God help me, I really do love Quick Change. In a career filled with memorable flicks like Ghostbusters, Stripes and Groundhog Day, Quick Change is my favorite. If thatís not high praise, I donít know what is.

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

Quick Change appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This became a good representation of a less than great-looking source.

Plenty of movies shot in 1989 offer solid visuals, but many more suffer from a murkiness not atypical of the eraís stocks. That became the biggest issue with Change, as the original photography tended to seem a bit bland.

For the most part, sharpness seemed reasonably tight and well-defined. A little softness crept into some wide and/or low-light shots, but the movie usually presented fairly good definition.

I noticed no problems with jagged edges or shimmering, edge haloes remained absent. Light grain manifested through the movie, and only two or three tiny specks popped up along the way, so the image felt clean.

As implied, many movies of this oneís era showed flat colors, and Quick Change reflected some of those concerns. However, its natural palette usually demonstrated pretty perky tones, so the hues held up fairly well.

Blacks were deep, and shadows offered largely appealing clarity, though a few felt a little dull. Though this never became a visual showcase, the image appeared to represent the source about as well as I could hope.

The DTS-HD MA 2.0 mix of Quick Change seemed decent but without much ambition. The soundstage appeared only mildly broad and spatially-defined, as it stuck fairly closely to the center.

We got music that spread across the front, but effects were more restricted and didnít add much to the proceedings. Occasionally the mix showed moderate movement and engagement, but this was a pretty restricted soundscape.

Audio quality was fine. Speech seemed natural and concise, with no issues connected to intelligibility or edginess.

Effects played a minor role but they sounded clean and accurate. The score showed fair dynamics and clarity, though bass couldíve been warmer. Not exactly an ambitious mix, Quick Change offered perfectly adequate audio.

How did the Blu-ray compare to the DVD from 2006? The lossless audio felt a smidgen warmer than the DVDís track, though the restricted nature of the mix limited room for growth.

The same went for the visuals. As noted earlier, the original photography never excelled, so nothing will ever make Quick Change a great looking flick.

Still, the Blu-ray offered a cleaner, tighter and brighter impression. Again, this didnít become a stunning presentation, but it became the best version of the film to date.

As was the case with the DVD, we find no extras beyond the movieís trailer. I hoped Warner would develop some new features so their absence disappoints, though it doesnít shock.

Itís not an exaggeration to refer to Quick Change as one of my 15 or so favorite movies of all-time. More than three decades after its release, it remains as funny and inventive today as it did in 1990. The Blu-ray brings generally positive picture and audio but it lacks bonus materials. I heartily recommend this wonderful film

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