Review: It's Kind of a Funny Story Blu-ray

It's Kind of a Funny Story Blu-ray boxSTUDIO: Universal | DIRECTORS: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck | CAST: Keir Gilchrist, Zach Galifianakis, Emma Roberts
RELEASE DATE: 2/8/2011 | PRICE: DVD $29.98, Blu-ray $39.98
BONUSES: deleted scenes, outtakes, featurettes
SPECS: PG-13 | 102 min. | Comedy | 1.85:1 aspect ratio | DTS-HD audio | English, Spanish and French subtitles

RATINGS (out of 5 dishes): Movie | Audio | Video | Overall

It's Kind of a Funny Story movie sceneSweet, funny and quirky, It’s Kind of a Funny Story is a comedy that tugs lightly at heartstrings and leaves its audience smiling.

Based on the novel by Ned Vizzini, the film tells the story of a depressed teen (Keir Gilchrist, TV’s United States of Tara) who checks himself into an adult psychiatric ward when pressures in his life become too much for him to handle. It’s a situation we can all relate to, but the heart of the story is in the patients he encounters.

Zach Galifianakis, who has been making a reputation for himself as show stealer since he had audiences rolling in The Hangover, then later in Dinner for Schmucks and Due Date, does it again in It’s Kind of a Funny Story. Playing Bobby, a fellow patient, Galifianakis is what Gilchrist’s Craig could become if he doesn’t stop taking everything so seriously. And it’s Galifianakis who shows the troubled teen how to just let go, even when he has difficulty with it himself.

The rest of the performances, including Emma Roberts (The Winning Season) as Gilchrist’s love interest and Lauren Graham (TV’s Parenthood) as his mother, are equally impressive.

Although this isn’t an art house film with beautiful, epic cinematography that screams out for high-definition, the movie looks fine on Blu-ray, and the scenes from Craig’s imagination standout in bright colors. The fun soundtrack is highlighted in the audio too.

The Blu-ray’s special features package isn’t huge, but it’s appropriate for a movie of this kind, and there’s a lot worthy of attention. The two featurettes are brief, and the making-of isn’t much except the actors and directors talking about their roles, but the featurette on the movie’s New York City premiere puts the spotlight on Galifianakis, with people from in front and behind the camera telling how funny he was on set. Co-writer/director Anna Boden (Sugar) reveals that one of his ad libs had the cameraman laughing so much that his hands were shaking, and the movement made it into the film.

Galifianakis shows more of his talent for comedy in the outtakes, in which he rattles off a dozen or so great descriptions of the way his sweater smells.

The other item in the special features menu is a handful of deleted scenes, but unlike most movies, where these are throwaways, the ones offered for It’s Kind of a Funny Story are worth a look. One with Gilchrist calling a suicide hotline is great, and we see more of his character when he confronts his father in another scene. Check them out.


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About S. Clark

Sam Clark is the former Managing Editor/Online Editor of Video Business magazine. With 19 years experience in journalism, 12 in the home entertainment industry, Sam has been hooked on movies on since she saw E.T. then stared into the sky waiting to meet her own friendly alien. Thanks to her husband’s shared love of movies, Sam reviews Blu-ray discs in a true home theater, with a 118-inch screen, projector and cushy recliners with cup holders.