How To Deal

How To Deal (2003)
New Line Home Entertainment
Cast: Mandy Moore, Trent Ford, Allison Janney, Peter Gallagher
Extras: Commentary Track, Featurettes

Growing up is hard, especially when you’re a teenager… hormones and emotions running wild and all, things are just in a constant turmoil. But things are not nearly as bad or bleak as many teenagers would want to make you believe. I know. I’ve been there myself.
’How To Deal’ is sort of a case study of one teenage girl going through her life, trying to find herself, as life is throwing her a series of curve balls. We watch her take on events like her parent’s divorce, a teen pregnancy, a car accident, her own insecurities and so much more all at the same time. It’s all a bit much and a bit sappy, but I guess that’s what the film was out for.

New Line Home Entertainment is presenting ’How To Deal’ in its 1.85:1 widescreen aspect ratio that is enhanced for 16×9 TV sets. As you would expect, the transfer is of pristine quality without any flaws or blemishes. Very sharp and with an incredible level of detail, the image is rich and boasts strong, vibrant colors. Skin tones are natural and the film maintains a warm color scheme throughout. Black levels are solid, creating deep blacks that never break up.

The audio comes as a 5.1 channel Dolby Digital track with an optional Dolby Surround track. The audio is balanced and powerful, with a good frequency response and wide dynamic range.

A commentary track is also included featuring the film’s stars and director Calre Kilner, though this seems more like a giggly teenage-girl sleepover than an actual commentary track. Again, I think it is a deliberate approach as it will undoubtedly appeal very well to the movie’s primary demographics – teenage girls.

Three featurettes are also included promoting the stars of the film and the director. A featurette about young adult literature is also included, trying to dive a bit deeper into the mentality of teenagers and their reading preferences.

’How To Deal’ is completely targeted at teenage girls and as such I had little use for the DVD or the film for that matter. However, I do see its appeal for adolescent girls, who find a role model in Mandy Moore’s character Halley. New Line definitely took good care of the film for this DVD release, so check it out, if this is your bag.