Showtime (2002)
Warner Home Video
Cast: Eddie Murphy, Robert DeNiro, Rene Russo, William Shatner
Extras: Commentary Track, Featurette, Additional Scenes Trailer, Cast & Crew Info

Imagine, someone wrote a script for a ’Rush Hour’ sequel, but couldn’t sell it to New Line. Instead the script landed at Warner home Video who placed a different cast in the parts and went to production. That’s how ’Showtime’ feels to me in a nutshell. It could easily have been an entry in the ’Rush Hour’ franchise. It is a buddy cop movie, this time pairing up Eddie Murphy and Robert DeNiro.

Warner Home Video has released the movie in its original widescreen presentation, though a pan&scan version is also available separately. The transfer is very clean and devoid of any defects or blemishes. There is no noise or grain in the picture and edges are very sharply delineated and without edge-enhancement. Colors are vivid and natural looking at all times and blacks are solid and deep. No compression artifacts are evident.

The DVD also contains 5.1 channel Dolby Digital audio track in English and French. Both are well produced and very aggressive. Surrounds engulf the viewer almost constantly and the dynamic range gives the track a very good punch. Dialogues are well integrated and always understandable.

’Showtime’ comes with a good number of extras, such as an informative commentary track by director Tom Dey and producer Jorge Saralegui. An HBO ’First Look’ promo featurette is also included on the release, as well as a series of extended and additional scenes, including a number of hilarious improvisational Eddie Murphy moments.

’Showtime’ is nothing new, but it delivers on what it does. It is fun and explosive, and full of hilarious moments with witty dialogues. ’You’re getting acting lessons from T.J. Hooker here…’ is only one line that shows that the movie doesn’t take itself too seriously, and the film is filled with such moments. Check it out.