Yeah, Thanks A Lot I Get Paroled On Friday. Savannah Smiles (MVD Rewind Collection) Blu-ray Review + Screenshots


A pleasant surprise from the folks over at MVD. Savannah Smiles will put a smile on your face.

Studio: MVD Visual

Release Date: December 10th, 1982 (theatrical) / May 22nd, 2018 (blu-ray)

Picture: 1080p (1.78:1 Aspect Ratio)

Sound: English LPCM 2.0

Starring: Mark Miller, Donovan Scott, Bridgette Andersen, Peter Graves, Barbara Stanger, Pat Morita, Carol Wayne

Written by Mark Miller

Directed by Pierre De Moro

Rated PG (some violence)


Savannah Smiles title card

THE FEATURES ⭐⭐⭐

The Making of Savannah Smiles (28m 44s, HD)

Writer/producer Mark Miller, Teresa Andersen (mother of actress Bridgette Andersen), composer Ken Sutherland, and actor Donovan Scott are on hand to talk about the making of the film and the impact that it had on their lives. This is a fairly standard making of with nothing out of the ordinary going on.

Memories of Bridgette (20m 53s, HD)

All of the making of’s participants are on hand to talk about Bridgette Andersen, the little girl who plays the film’s title character. He mother, Teresa, shares memories of Bridgette as she rose through the ranks of acting. She talks about some of the roles that Bridgette played and then talks about Bridgette’s drug addiction which lead to her death at the age of 21. I liked this featurette better than the making of because there is more weight here and the stories are better.

Song and Music (16m 28s, HD)

Composer Ken Sutherland takes us through the score for the film. He talks about influences, styles, and overall meaning behind his selections.

Trailers
  • Savannah Smiles (2m 55s, SD) If you are unsure about the transfer used for the film, look at this standard definition trailer and you will see how much of an improvement it really is.

  • Attack of the Killer Tomatoes (2m 11s, SD, 1.33:1)


THE PACKAGING ⭐⭐⭐

Savannah Smiles comes to us in a Blu-ray/DVD combo pack.





Both discs are REGION FREE.

little girl has puzzling look on her face

THE PICTURE ⭐⭐1/2
THE SOUND ⭐⭐

MVD presents Savannah Smiles in 1.78:1 and the film looks ok. The transfer is struck from release and not from the original camera negative which means that the presentation is marred by scratches, hair, lines, and other debris. On the right side of the frame is a constant stream of minor damage and the reel markers are seen many times as well. On the positive side, the transfer has a great film-like appearance to it and there is a decent amount of detail, but nothing to get excited about. Colors look great, especially the greens of the trees later in the film. I do wish that this transfer had been taken from the OCN, but if this is what MVD had to work with then they have done a good job of getting the film to us.

The sound fares a bit worse than the picture. For the most part, the dialogue comes through pretty well, but there are times where the dialogue is distorted and hissy. There is also a crackling noise that can be heard through a few scenes throughout the film as well. The score comes through the best, though.

girl feeds her friend's chest puppy

THE FILM ⭐⭐⭐1/2
Savannah (Bridgette Andersen, The Parent Trap II) is the precocious six-year-old daughter of a busy politician who is consumed by his re-election campaign. She decides to run away from home and sneaks into a car driven by two escaped convicts, Alvie (Mark Miller, Christmas Mountain) and Boots (Donovan Scott, Police Academy), in a crazy comedy of errors. Hiding in an abandoned house, the two bumbling crooks initially try to hold the adorable Savannah for ransom to obtain a hefty reward for her return, but an unexpected bond grows among Savannah, Alvie and Boots, creating a surrogate family they have never known before. Their relationship is tested when the convicts, now seen as kidnappers, must choose between their freedom and their new friend.

I was surprised by Savannah Smiles. I had never heard of the film before and didn’t know what to expect when the blu-ray arrived the other day. From reading the description on the back of the box, I thought that the film would be a sappy comedy. I was kind of right, but the film actually has more to it.

The film is, first and foremost, a comedy. The antics of the two convicts are funny enough on their own that this film probably would have worked if the focus was on just them. I thought that the interaction between the two really sold me on the film. We do get to know them for a bit before Savannah comes along and they are great.

Once Savannah comes along, the film turns into more of a family comedy. Not that the film was crude or adult before that, but I could see kids getting a bit bored with the two convicts. Savannah changes the playing field and adds a cuteness to the film. Bridgette Andersen is wonderful as Savannah and does what many child actors have a hard time avoiding: not being annoying. That is the major problem I have with child actors. They either act annoying to the point that you want them out of the film, or they try to act like adults and that too can become annoying. Andersen brings a lot of confidence to the role and she plays off of the actors playing the convicts incredibly well.

OVERALL ⭐⭐⭐

One thing that I can say about the film that will apply to anyone who has a heart: If you do not tear up a bit, then you are not human. Savannah Smiles is a touching, big-hearted film that is honest and true. Sure, it gets sappy, but the film is entertaining and that is all that we ask for. I would recommend Savannah Smiles to everyone. It is a really great time at the movies and one film that I will be revisiting soon.

The blu-ray, from MVD, is going to make some angry due to the picture and sound quality not being the best out there. I personally had a few problems with the picture and the sound, but I am easier to please than most. That being said, if you are a fan of the film or you like films like this or Smokey and the Bandit (for the comedy not for the incredible car stunts) then you should pick this up.

MORE SCREENSHOTS

man stands looking into the distance while holding onto a shovel

man being shot at on a farm

wife looks down on  husband

little girl puts the finishing touches on her first novel, The Crayon Diaries

man and woman hold their chests because that is the in thing to do

all of the city's cops go to the park to figure out where to eat

man dances with woman

dirty car is seen from a safe distance

Michael Parks and Peter Graves argue about what style of acting is the best

girl with broken arm makes fun of someone who can use all of their limbs

man lies to little girl and tells her that she is a princess when really she is a camel

mr miyagi reads to bible while dressed as a priest because that is what he does on fridays

cops in car present their rap for the upcoming rap battle. they do not win

man walks through creek because he can damn it!

two men smile even though they are going to jail. Maybe that is why they are smiling.