DVD & Blu-ray Reviews

Pretty Woman, Blu-ray (1990/2009)

The story line resembles the Pygmalion myth. Actually the original script was a much more hard nosed story about the evils of prostitution titled 3000 for the amount that the Richard Gere character pays the hooker to stay with him for a week.

Published on February 10, 2009

Pretty Woman, Blu-ray (1990/2009)
Pretty Woman, Blu-ray (1990/2009)

Starring: Richard Gere, Julia Roberts, Jason Alexander
Director: Garry Marshall
Music: James Newton Howard
Studio: Touchstone 058043 [Release: Feb. 10, 09]
Video: 1.85:1 for 16:9 color 1080p HD
Audio: English uncompressed 5.1, English/French/Spanish DD 5.1, DD 2.0
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Extras: Commentary track by Director Marshall (same as on 2005  15th Anniversary Edition), Blooper reel, “Live from the Wrap Party,” “LA – The Pretty Woman Tour,” 1990 production featurette, Natalie Cole music video – “Wild Women Do,” Theatrical trailer
Length: 125 minutes
Rating: ****1/2

Pretty Woman is another rags to riches story of a good hearted hooker who meets her billionaire prince charming and both of their lives are improved as a result.  The story line resembles the Pygmalion myth. Actually the original script was a much more hard nosed story about the evils of prostitution titled 3000 for the amount that the Richard Gere character pays the hooker to stay with him for a week. Although it’s been cleaned up and prettified to Hollywood standards, but still not something you’d want to show your kids, enough of the grit comes through at the beginning to make the story not completely laughable.

The acting of Gere and especially of Julia Roberts is top rate and makes the film a Hollywood classic.  The supporting actors are all terrific including Jason Alexander as his reprehensible lawyer,  Laura San Giacomo as her hooker roommate, and Hector Elizondo as the sympathetic concierge.

The image quality is very good for a 20 year old film but the extras are unfortunately just in standard definition. Some such as the blooper reel are forgettable. The approximately five minutes of extra footage included in a previous director’s cut DVD is not offered here but from online comments it appears we are betta off. The uncompressed 48K PCM surround is a welcome addition though only made use of in a couple of scenes.

- John Sunier




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