- Aspect Ratio: 1:78:1
- Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
- Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
- Audio Codec: English Dolby TrueHD 5.1
- Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
- Region: A (Region-Locked)
- Rating: R
- Run Time: 94 Mins.
- Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
- Studio: Anchor Bay Entertainment
- Blu-ray Release Date: June 12th, 2012
- List Price: $24.99
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Demoted tells the story of Rodney (Michael Vartan) and Mike (Sean Astin), a pair of irresponsible, hard-partying corporate tire salesmen. Right under the wing of their boss, the two seem to love their jobs if only because they get away with anything. Well, that is until one night of over partying leaves their boss dead. Guess who is now in charge? The one man Rodney and Mike consistently tortured in Ken Castro (David Cross). Soon the two find themselves ‘demoted’ to secretary positions, the last place the two would ever want to be. Now it’s up to the two to work together in hopes of bringing Ken down. Along the way, they’ll learn that the way they formerly acted just may not have been right. What results is a well-made comedy with genuine heart, despite its sometimes overly sexist nature.
Let’s face it, gross-out comedies are nothing new in the slightest sense. Ever since the original American Pie, studios seem to be churning out film after film. While some succeed (Borat), others have failed (the countless Pie sequels). Demoted ranks somewhere in between the two, as I found the film had moments of genuine heart thanks in part to the cast. Astin, at first, is a pure sexist treating the opposite sex as a kind of toy. He lambasts the secretaries basically treating them as if they’re a lesser species. That is until he has to become one. It’s in these sequences where he learns how he’s been living his life, has just been plainly wrong. The same goes for Vartan, as Rodney. Seeing his faults as well, he vows to be a different man, and at the end of the movie, I feel we see his change.
The other supporting cast members, particularly Constance Zimmer as Mike’s boss, are equally as charming. Zimmer, known for the Entourage series on HBO, is ever so wonderful here injecting a sense of life into the scenes she’s in. David Cross, well Cross is kind of funny at first; however, towards the end of the film, well, we can’t blame that we see what happens to him. He’s just annoying and a complete brat at times.
Still, despite some issues with its overtly sexist tone at times, Demoted is still an enjoyable film. Perhaps because I’ve seen so many gross-out comedies, I didn’t expect much here. In the end, however, I was quite surprised by this one.
The film’s 1:78:1 framed, AVC MPEG-4 encoded, is fairly solid throughout. Shot on Kodak Super 16mm film, the palette can be a bit subdued at times; however, there are still instances where the colors do showcase a good amount of detail. Take for instance the outdoor wedding sequence with Rodney, Jennifer and her father. It’s here that the lush greens of the grass do pop off screen, not necessarily in a manner that screams ‘BEST TRANSFER EVER!’, more something that is still impressive given the relatively low budget and lower resolution film format. Flesh tones are accurate, while contrast levels do seem to have been toned down a bit. Perhaps this was done to convey the tone of the film, while there’s a light layer of film grain coated on the transfer, but nothing that is overly annoying. All in all, this is a good effort from Anchor Bay.
The film arrives with a Dolby TrueHD 5.1 mix, which does what it can with the comedy genre limitations it’s given. The mix tends to have a front heavy feel to it with clean, intelligible dialogue. Atmosphere can be a bit on the reserved side with very few instances (outside of the protest and bar sequences where background effects can be heard) of any real rear activity. All in all, this mix is nothing overly impressive. More it suits the film at hand just fine.
There are no supplements provided.
The Definitive Word
In the world of gross-out comedies, Demoted rises above the norm thanks in part to its charming cast. Anchor Bay’s Blu-ray features a solid technical presentation that suits the film well. I’d say definitely give this one a rental.
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