- Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
- Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
- Resolution: 1080p/24
- Audio Codec: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, French Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
- Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
- Region: A
- Rating: PG-13
- Discs: 2
- Studio: 20th Century Fox
- Blu-ray Release Date: January 26, 2010
- List Price: $39.99[amazon-product align=”right”]B002VPTJNQ[/amazon-product]
Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures
(Screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG thus are meant as a general representation of the content and do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)
Drew Barrymore makes her directorial debut with this coming of age sports dramedy starring Ellen Page (Juno; Smart People) as Bliss, a seventeen-year-old dealing with all the usual pressures of teenage life, among them an overbearing mother (Marcia Gay Harden) who wants her to be a beauty pageant queen.
When Bliss discovers the world of roller derby on a night out with her friend Pash (Arrested Development’s Alia Shawkat), she is instantly drawn to the hard action world of these strong women. Bliss approaches one of the team’s players, Maggie Mayhem (Kristen Wiig) after the game to tell her she is her hero, and Maggie encourages Bliss to try out for the team and become her own hero.
It’s not long before Bliss is pulling out her old Barbie roller skates and practicing her skills to try out for the roller derby, but there’s one problem — she’s only seventeen and the minimum age requirement is twenty-one. No worries, she lies to her parents that she’s studying for SATs and she fibs about her age and makes it into the roller derby league. She finds a new family amongst her teammates and begins to find herself and her calling in life, but mom and dad aren’t so happy when they inevitably find out Bliss has been lying to them.
Barrymore proves she has a great eye for capturing the fast action of the derby world in her directorial debut, despite the tendencies towards cliché in the script and the sometimes-haphazard feel to the order of events. Performances are all strong, particularly from Ellen Page who once again proves she deserves her spot as the current Hollywood “it” girl, and it’s also nice to see Alia Shawkat in a role that shows off her skills as well.
Whip It is a fun, girl power-fueled ride that shouldn’t be missed.
The 2.40:1 AVC/MPEG-4 encoding of Whip It is flawless. The source is clean; the picture is perfectly detailed from the foreground and well extended into the background. Blacks are obsidian and contrast is strong while white levels never clip. Flesh tones are natural shadow detail is strong. The many quick-paced roller derby scenes show no evidence of blocking or pixelization. Color reproduction is vibrant, with greens, reds, and blues popping nicely from the screen.
The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack for Whip It isn’t necessarily an aggressive mix. In fact, much of the main sound is mixed across the front three channels, but the mix is engaging nonetheless. The surround channels are effectively used for atmospheric effects during the roller derby matches and the film’s hip soundtrack shines, with a beautiful midrange, extended yet tight low frequencies and mellow high range. Dialogue is clean and balanced into the mix nicely, never getting lost even during the most active scenes.
The one are where Whip It disappoints on Blu-ray is in its supplements. The barebones release doesn’t provide much worth watching beyond the deleted scenes, which are thankfully offered in high definition, but what little else is offered is pure filler.
The supplements provided on this release are:
- Deleted Scene (2.40:1; 1080p/24) — 9 Alternate, extended, and deleted scenes.
- Fox Movie Channel Presents Writer’s Draft: Shauna Cross of Whip It (1.33:1; 480i/60; 0:03.04)
- Whip It Soundtrack Spot
The Definitive Word
An excellent directorial debut from Drew Barrymore, wonderful acting performance, adrenalin filled sports sequences, a killer soundtrack, and an all around fun story all brought together in a reference quality Blu-ray release make Whip It a must have release.