Immersed in Blu-ray: The Nutty Professor 50th

Jerry Lewis’ comic masterpiece gets the lavish, must-own Blu-ray treatment from Warner Bros. Home Ent.

The Nutty Professor 50th Anniversary Collector’s Edition

It all came together for Lewis with his inspired Jekyll/Hyde riff  from ’63 (which he refers to as “my very special child”). Deconstructing himself and show biz, Lewis’ personal themes are explored with physical dexterity and thematic cohesion: the arrested, child-like adult  (nerdy Dr. Julius Kelp) at odds with his darker side — the narcissistic hipster (Buddy Love) — combined with the need for love and recognition from a beautiful admirer (student Stella Stevens). The influences of Frank Tashlin (it’s as animated as any cartoon) and former partner Dean Martin (the alter-ego is a spot-on Rat Pack caricature) are present in this surreal, Technicolor production that pops like 3-D. And Lewis’ growing popularity at Paramount gave him the budget and freedom to make an uncompromising comedy (his topnotch crew includes cinematographer W. Wallace Kelley, production designer Henry Bumstead, and costume designer Edith Head). Lewis continued to make us of his patented video assist monitor, which later became the industry standard.

The stunning Blu-ray certainly surpasses the previous DVD and new bonus features in the four-disc set include a recreation of Lewis’ Being a Person book (filled with drawings and quotes originally made and distributor to the cast and crew of The Nutty Professor), 48-page storyboard book and 44-page cutting script with director notes, Perfecting the Formula behind-the-scenes footage, deleted scenes, bloopers, screen tests, outtakes, and rare Phoney Phone Calls CD (private prank calls perfected by Lewis from 1959-1972).

DVDs of  Cinderfella (1960, directed by Tashlin) and The Errand Boy (1961) featuring Lewis’ famous pantomime are also included.

 

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Blu-ray, Clips, Home Entertainment, Movies, Tech, Trailers

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