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Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

Columbia TriStar Home Video presents
Threesome (1994)

"Sex is kinda like pizza. When it's bad, it's still pretty good."
- Stuart (Stephen Baldwin)

Review By: Kevin Clemons  
Published: April 27, 2001

Stars: Lara Flyn Boyle, Josh Charles, Stephen Baldwin
Other Stars: Alexis Arquette
Director: Andrew Flemming

MPAA Rating: R for (strong sexuality and sex-related dialogue)
Run Time: 01h:33m:10s
Release Date: April 24, 2001
UPC: 043396058569
Genre: romantic comedy


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B+ C+A-B B

DVD Review

Hello, my name is Kevin, and I have never been a Gen-X slacker. I never saw myself wearing flannel and ripped jeans. Although I must admit that I should get some points considering that both Nirvana and Pearl Jam did have a heavy influence on my life as I was growing up. I bring this up because during the sudden rush of "Gen-X" films that littered the Cineplex's during the early to mid 1990s, I never identified with the films that were to today's late-twentysomethings what the brat pack films were to kids growing up in the 80s. Pictures like Reality Bites, With Honors and countless other films of the time period are each fine films, but were lost on me. Yet the best of the group, Threesome, failed to attract an audience, even though it is clearly the most universally appealing of the group.

Threesome tells the story of friends, one female and two males that, through the course of a school year, learn more about each other than they do in their classes. As Threesome opens, college students Eddy (Charles) and Stuart (Baldwin) wind up sharing a dorm room. Life seems to be running smoothly as the two become a college version of Ozzie and Harriet. Eddy teaches Stuart how to study while Stuart shows Eddy the ropes of drinking and having sex with as many women as is humanly possible. When Alex (Boyle) shows up their everyday life is turned upside down. Alex, a female student whose unisex name earned her "male" status in the college computer, soon becomes the object of affection of her two new roommates. As is customary in a romantic comedy, her arrival creates a tidal wave of sexual tension as she becomes attracted to Eddy, while Stuart lusts after her. Yet the shy Eddy recognizes that he may be gay when he begins to see Stuart as something more than a friend.

While there is very little in Threesome that screams originality , the picture does get points for not falling into the binding clichés that hold other films down. It realizes Eddy's same sex liking and does nothing to sway his beliefs. There is no big scene where Eddy's sexuality is challenged, a la Chasing Amy. The other characters in the film recognize his choices and try to keep his interests at heart, and for that I applaud the film.

Threesome offers a mixed bag in the way of acting, although I will admit I am a bit prejudiced. While I am not the biggest fan of Stephen Baldwin, I will admit that he plays a "party dude" better than most other actors. Yet in Threesome, it is almost as if he is trying too hard. He has a scene early in the film that takes place at a play that is simply frustrating to watch, because of his inability to display a wide emotional range. On the other end of the acting spectrum is Josh Charles, a personal favorite of mine, considering his involvement in Sports Night. Charles brings a nice balance of charm and energy to Eddy that works well in the film. And Lara Flynn Boylehits and misses throughout the film, one moment convincingly brash and independent, yet at another showing no depth at all.

Rating for Style: B+
Rating for Substance: C+

 

Image Transfer

 OneTwo
Aspect Ratio1.85:1 - Widescreen1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyesno
Anamorphicyesno


Image Transfer Review: Presented in both the original 1.85:1 aspect ratio as well as a full frame transfer, the image quality of this DVD for Threesome is up to par with other high quality Columbia Tri Star releases. Colors are vibrant as in the opening scene with Eddy walking across campus coming across very well. Sharpness and detail are also top notch and edge enhancement never rears its ugly head. The only downside to the transfer is a small amount of grain in some of the scenes shot at night. Overall this is yet another great transfer from these folks.

Image Transfer Grade: A-

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0English, French, Spanish, Portugueseyes


Audio Transfer Review: Featuring a Dolby 2.0 surround mix, Threesome doesn't exactly have enough sound to blow the doors to your screening room off, but what is here is nothing to scoff at. Dialogue is clear and easy to understand with no flatness at all. The abundance of pop music that shows up in the film comes across nicely in the front speakers as well as the surround speakers. French, Spanish, and Portuguese language tracks are also available.

Audio Transfer Grade: B

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 28 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English, French, Spanish, Portugeuse, Chinese, Korean, and Thai with remote access
Cast and Crew Biographies
Cast and Crew Filmographies
1 Other Trailer(s) featuring About Last Night... and Can't Hardly Wait
1 Alternate Endings
1 Feature/Episode commentary by director Andrew Fleming
Packaging: Amaray
1 Disc
2-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: While not billed as a special edition, Threesome does contain more special features than some blockbuster titles from other studios. First is an audio commentary track by director Andrew Fleming. Fleming is very candid as he talks about getting the film made and avoiding straight-to-video hell, as well as the same-sex aspect of the film and some of his personal stories pertaining to the situation.

There is an alternate ending and trailers for About Last Night... and Can't Hardly Wait are also available. Strangely, the trailer for Threesome is nowhere to be found.

Extras Grade: B

 

Final Comments

Threesome isn't a film for everyone. But for those who are willing to see a romantic comedy with a slightly skewed angle on love it is worth checking out. Recommended.

 


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