DVD Movie Guide @ dvdmg.com
Review Archive:  # | A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-U | V-Z | Viewer Ratings | Main


Robert Schwentke
Jeff Bridges, Ryan Reynolds, Kevin Bacon
Writing Credits:
Phil Hay, Matt Manfredi

A recently slain cop joins a team of undead police officers working for the Rest in Peace Department and tries to find the man who murdered him.

Box Office:
$130 million.
Opening Weekend
$12,691,415 on 2852 Screens.
Domestic Gross

Rated PG-13.

Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
Spanish DTS 5.1
French DTS 5.1
English Descriptive Video Service
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 90 min.
Price: $14.98
Release Date: 1/20/2015

• “The Evolution of Lucy” Featurette
• “Cerebral Capacity” Featurette
• Previews


-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
-Marantz SR7010 9.2 Channel Full 4K Ultra HD AV Surround Receiver
-Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player
-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


RIPD [Blu-Ray] (2013)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (October 22, 2020)

With a budget of $130 million and a prime July release date, Universal Studios clearly believed 2013’s sci-fi/action flick RIPD would turn into a massive hit. Alas, that didn’t occur, as the movie made a mere $78 million worldwide.

Only $33 million of that came from US audiences, a figure that meant the movie wound up a pathetic 85th place at the 2013 box office. Though Universal clearly intended the film to set up a franchise, it crashed upon impact.

Boston narcotics detective Nick Walker (Ryan Reynolds) flirts with the dark side and steals from a drug dealer. However, he decides to avoid this illegal turn, mainly because he fears that he will disappoint his wife Julia (Stephanie Szostak).

Before any of this can happen, though, Nick’s partner Bobby Hayes (Kevin Bacon) kills him. The now deceased Nick finds an unusual form of afterlife awaits him.

Rather than go to heaven – or a warmer place – Nick ends up as a recruit for the “Rest in Peace Department”, a force of dead law enforcement officers who protect the living from the spirits of the deceased. Paired with Civil War-era US Marshal Roy Pulshipher (Jeff Bridges), Nick adjusts to his new existence and also pursues justice for those who caused his death.

If you think RIPD sounds like a mix of Men In Black, Ghost and Beetlejuice, you won’t find yourself far off the mark. In particular, the first of those three seems like a massive influence, as it feels impossible to ignore all the ways RIPD echoes MIB.

Though it may wear its inspirations on its sleeve, this doesn’t mean RIPD must fail. The basic concept comes with enough cleverness and promise that this could’ve become a winning film.

Every once in a while, RIPD almost, sort of, kind of threatens to live up to that potential. However, much of the movie seems perfunctory and without a lot of imagination or impact.

RIPD probably works best during its opening act, mainly because that segment comes with the most inventive material. As noted, the situations echo the film’s influences, but the movie manages to deliver just enough fun to intrigue the viewer.

After that, however, the gags and scenarios tend to wear thin, as RIPD can’t find ways to keep its story fresh. We find ourselves involved in a pretty by-the-numbers plot that the movie never figures out how to enliven.

The main plot’s banal nature really becomes a major drawback, as it becomes tough to remain interested. RIPD attempts to elevate the threat as the story progresses, mainly in that it changes from Nick’s pursuit of justice into something bigger, but these shifts come across contrived and fairly ineffective.

As for the cast, Reynolds essentially plays a variation on the Ryan Reynolds Character, albeit one with more angst and less snark. Reynolds still makes Nick a wiseass, but he tends to play straight man much of the time, so he stays well below his standard level of sarcasm.

While the Ryan Reynolds Character can wear thin, his attempts to be more of an ordinary guy/standard action hero don’t work all that well. Not that Reynolds offers a bad performance, but he just seems a little neutered, as the movie offers enough of his usual shtick to make his more subdued performance feel bland.

No one will use “subdued” to refer to Bridges’ acting here, though, as he chews all the scenery he can find. Bridges goes for a hammy version of a stereotypical Old West Lawman that leans heavily on the Yosemite Sam school.

Bridges’ performance neither excels nor flops. Actually, Bridges’ over the top work provides some of the movie’s entertaining moments, mainly because he seems to enjoy his wild freedom to overact.

Unfortunately, Bridges doesn’t seem sufficient to redeem matters, and some genuinely atrocious computer imagery doesn’t help. Every time we see a “Deado”, the effects-created characters look absurdly phony and plastic. Given how often we encounter these roles, their problematic presentation turns into a major issue.

Ultimately, RIPD doesn’t present a painful 96 minutes of supernatural action and comedy, and I’ve certainly seen much worse summer blockbuster fare. That said, it lacks the energy and spirit it needs to become better than mediocre.

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

RIPD appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.35:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. The movie came with a mostly appealing presentation.

Overall sharpness remained good. A smattering of wider elements or effects components could seem a little soft, but those didn’t create real distractions. Still, the movie felt a bit more tentative than I’d expect at times.

Instead, the movie tended to be accurate and concise. I noticed no shimmering or jaggies, and the film lacked edge haloes or source flaws.

The palette opted for a mix of the usual orange and teal – a heavy mix of orange and teal, as they seemed nearly comical at their extremes. Within stylistic choices, the hues looked fine, though.

Blacks were deep and dense, while low-light shots depicted appropriate clarity. Despite some softness, the image seemed to be more than satisfactory.

With plenty of action scenes, the movie’s DTS-HD MA 5.1 mix often opened up to give us active information. These used the various speakers to create an involving, effective sense of these situations and circumstances. The elements meshed together well and moved in a satisfying manner.

Audio quality also pleased. Music was peppy and full, while dialogue sounded accurate and concise.

Effects demonstrated good clarity and range, with fine low-end response as necessary. This wasn’t quite a demo-worthy track, but it fared well.

As we shift to extras, we open with cut footage. We find Alternate Opening #1 (4:37),Alternate Opening #2 (5:29) and four Deleted/Alternate Scenes (7:15).

Both “Openings” give us a formal intro to Roy much earlier than in the final film. Both feature Roy with the same “Deado”, though they progress in different ways. Both seem a bit long to start the movie, especially because RIPD is more about Nick than Roy, so it makes sense to get to Nick’s narrative more quickly.

As for the other four clips, the first two expand the Julia character, while the remaining pair offer more action and comedy with our leads. The fourth – “Roy’s Partner Shot Him” – adds a bit of useful material, but the rest seem superfluous.

A Gag Reel spans three minutes, 48 seconds and provides a pretty standard compilation of mistakes and silliness. Nothing especially interesting emerges.

With Bringing the Avatars to Life, we get a six-minute, eight-second “motion comic”. This offers an animated version of storyboards related to the human avatars of Roy and Nick. It’s a decent look at the processes.

Five featurettes follow, and Nick’s New Avatars runs one minute. It gives us a few alternate options for Nick’s new human body seen at the movie’s end. It’s more “deleted footage” than “featurette”, but it’s fun.

Transferring RIPD runs eight minutes, 18 seconds and brings comments from producers Neil H. Moritz and Mike Richardson, writers Phil Hay and Matt Manfredi, and actors Ryan Reynolds, Kevin Bacon and Jeff Bridges.

“Transferring” looks at the source and its adaptation along with cast and performances. Our glimpses of the original graphic novel offers some good notes, but most of “Transferring” leans too heavily on happy talk.

Next we find Filming the Other Side, a six-minute, 29-second reel with Bacon, Bridges, Reynolds, Moritz, visual effects supervisor Michael J. Wassel, production designer Alec Hammond, and stunt double Troy Brenna,

“Side” covers the work of director Robert Schwentke as well as visual techniques and effects. Like the prior featurette, this one includes a handful of interesting insights, but much of it pushes toward praise.

Walking Among Us fills seven minutes, 25 seconds with remarks from Bacon, Bridges, Hay, Manfredi, Moritz, Reynolds, Hammond, Wassel, and actors Marisa Miller, Mary-Louise Parker, Robert Knepper, and Devin Ratray.

Here we get material about the movie’s avatars and Deados. It becomes another erratic reel.

Finally, Anatomy of a Shootout goes for seven minutes, 59 seconds and features Hammond, Moritz, Wassel, Bridges, key grip James Shelton, and actor Stephanie Szostak.

As implied by the title, “Anatomy” concentrates on the shoot for one specific sequence. It continues to hyper/peppy tone of its predecessors, but it comes with enough behind the scenes material to make it better than the rest. The disc opens with ads for 2 Guns, The World’s End, Despicable Me 2, Kick Ass 2 and Fast and Furious 6.

Previews adds promos for Jurassic Park Trilogy, Fast Five, The Bourne Legacy, Battleship, Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World, Cowboys and Aliens, The Mummy and Van Helsing. No trailer for RIPD appears here.

A second disc provides a DVD copy of RIPD. It includes the deleted/alternate scenes, the gag reel and “Transferring” but it lacks the other extras.

Though it occasionally shows glimmers of life, much of RIPD remains too formulaic to turn into anything memorable. Partly thanks to a nutty performance from Jeff Bridges, the film keeps us moderately engaged, but it fails to develop into an actual good movie. The Blu-ray comes with mostly positive picture, effective audio and a mix of bonus materials. RIPD remains watchable but forgettable.

Viewer Film Ratings: 2.8333 Stars Number of Votes: 6
5 3:
View Averages for all rated titles.

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