When her boyfriend dumps her, Emily, a spontaneous woman in her 30s, persuades her ultra-cautious mom to accompany her on a vacation to Ecuador. At Emily's insistence, the pair seek out adventure, but suddenly find themselves kidnapped. When these two very different women are trapped on this wild journey, their bond as mother and daughter is tested and strengthened while they attempt to navigate the jungle and escape.
I've never been a big fan of Amy Schumer's brand of comedy, but I was a big Goldie Hawn fan back in the 1980s, and she's one of the reasons I wanted to see Snatched, a movie that's not as much fun as one would hope, but far from the disaster it might have been.
Schumer stars as Emily, a gal who in the opening scenes gets fired from her retail job after spending too much of her day shopping for herself instead of helping customers. Despite having lost her employment, Emily still plans to go on a non-refundable vacation to Ecuador. Emily had planned to go with her boyfriend, Michael (an almost barely recognizable Randall Park), but after he breaks up with her, Emily winds up taking her mother, Linda (Goldie Hawn).
The women haven't been on vacation for too long before the handsome James (Tom Bateman) starts hitting on Emily at a bar. It will be obvious to everyone watching that James isn't quite what he seems, but that doesn't stop Emily from hanging out with him and then taking her mother with them on a cross-country sight-seeing adventure. The real reason, however, is so that James can get the two close to the Colombia border, where they are kidnapped by a group of thugs led by a man named Morgado (Oscar Jaenada). The bad guys seem to just want to get some ransom money, but things take a turn for the worse (one of the nice things about Director Jonathan Levine's movie is that he isn't afraid to go to dark places) when Emily accidentally kills one of Morgado's family members during an escape attempt.
The biggest laughs for me in Snatched take place back in the United States, where Emily's brother, Jeffrey (a hilarious Ike Barinholtz) – who is a nerdy agoraphobe – calls the U.S. State Department hoping to get them to rescue his family. There he crosses wits with officer Morgan Russell (Bashir Salahuddin) and the back and forth phone conversations are quite funny.
As for Hawn herself? She does an admirable job here that may make you wonder why it's been such a long time since anyone's put her in a feature film (this is her first theatrical appearance since 2002's The Banger Sisters). While she doesn't have any big standout scenes here, she really doesn't have any bad ones either – it's a solid "comeback" and a nice reminder to viewers of how talented she is as both a comedian and an actress. Hopefully, it won't be too long before we see her on the big screen again.
While a lot of Snatched doesn't work (there's a little too much of letting Schumer's character go off on long-winded rants that aren't really that funny to me), it does provide for a few big laughs and is smart enough not to stretch things out too far, clocking in at a brisk 90 minutes. While not the type of movie I'm likely to want to watch a second time, there's still enough here for an evening's entertainment.
Vital Disc Stats: The Blu-ray
Snatched can be picked up on 4K in an Ultra HD/Blu-ray/Digital HD combo pack. The eco-friendly black Elite keepcase houses the 4K and 50GB Blu-ray discs, along with two inserts: one containing a code for a digital copy of the film (redeemable via the FoxRedeem website for the HDX version on Vudu or the 1080p version on iTunes and other available services – no UHD for this one) and the other an ad for Regal Cinemas' Crown Club rewards program. A slipcover with artwork matching that of the keepcase slick slides over the case.
There are no trailers on the 4K disc, but the Blu-ray disc is front-loaded with an ad for Digital HD titles and trailers for Why Him? and Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates. The main menu on both the 4K and Blu-ray discs consists of a montage of footage from the movie, with menu selections across the bottom of the screen.
Unlike many 20th Century Fox titles, the Blu-ray here is region-free and, of course, Ultra 4K discs have no region coding.
Snatched is presented here in the 2.40:1 aspect ratio. Like a lot of Ultra HD titles on the market, the difference between the standard Blu-ray and this 4K disc is all about the color depth provided by HDR. As you might imagine given this movie's vacation setting, green is the predominant color, and the outdoor sequences here are filled with a dark, lush green that the 1080p version just can't provide.
Black levels are excellent as well, which prove to be quite helpful in some of the movie's sequences set at night. Details and facial features are well-defined, and perhaps not the most flattering for the two lead actresses, but every wrinkle and flaw is clearly visible here. Skin tones do lean to the slightly warmer side of things, but tend to be mostly consistent throughout the movie.
I didn't pick up on any flaws in the 4K transfer – no aliasing/shimmering, and certainly no issues with banding or noise. This is a glitch-free presentation.
If there's a downside to all this, it's that the Blu-ray is a pretty good transfer as well. While the difference is obvious between the two, it's also not such a huge step up that the 4K disc is a must-have over the standard release – viewers should (and will be) happy with either version.
Despite getting an Atmos mix for theaters, the featured track here is a 7.1 English DTS-HD Master Audio one, which frankly is really all that is needed for a comedy such as this one (although I have no doubt Atmos aficionados may disagree).
When you take a vacation in a jungle environment, one expects to hear various wildlife and ambient noises, and this lossless track for Snatched doesn't disappoint. There's not a constant immersive feeling, but when our leading ladies are deep in the Amazon jungle, one almost feels as if they might be there alongside them. Although it isn't used often, there's some low-end LFE use throughout the film as well – primarily for some of mild action sequences that take place in story. The mix is pretty good overall, so things like the musical soundtrack and surrounding noises never drown out the spoken word (primarily front and center) from the actors.
In addition to the lossless English track, the 4K disc contains a wealth of other audio options, consisting of 5.1 DTS tracks in French, Spanish (Castilian), German, Italian, as well as a 5.1 Dolby Digital tracks in Spanish (Latin), A English 5.1 Descriptive Audio track is also included. Subtitles are available in English SDH, Spanish (Latin), Spanish (Castilian), French, German, Italian, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Mandarin (Traditional), Mandarin (Simplified), Swedish, and Norwegian. There are also a healthy number of subtitle options for the Audio Commentary track on the disc.
Director Commentary by Jonathan Levine – This commentary track was recorded by the director before the movie's theatrical release, which is always disappointing to hear, as viewers/listeners will know going in that this isn't a track where we're going to hear anything negative about the film or what didn't quite work. Still, this isn't a horrible commentary, as Levine spends a lot of time talking about how the various actors came to be part of the movie and aspects of how certain scenes were set up. (Note: This commentary track is also available on the Blu-ray disc, but not listed again below.)
Deleted Scenes (HD 12:43) – A collection of ten deleted scenes from the movie, which can be watched together or individually. They consist of:
Emily Calling Friends (1:24)
In the Jeep with James (1:27)
Secret Beach (1:14)
Escape Attempt (0:48)
Calling Dad (0:58)
Expired Passport (0:25)
Strip Poker (1:55)
Morgado's Drum (0:48)
Hotel Lobby (1:28)
Extended and Alternate Scenes (HD 14:08) – Five additional deleted scenes, this time either extended versions of scenes already in the movie or alternate takes of said scenes. They can also be watched together or individually. They consist of:
Break Up (5:04)
Gag Reel (HD 2:43) – A short segment of some of the flubbed lines, bloopers, and antics from the shoot. Sadly, like most of these reels that appear on releases, this one's not very funny.
Trailers (HD 4:28) – The original theatrical (2:04) and red band (2:24) trailers for the movie. A "Play All" option is included, should one wish to watch them back to back.
Snatched came and went in theaters pretty fast, but is a little better than its reputation, with a quick and breezy story that doesn't outstay its welcome and a few good laughs along the way. It's far from a home run, but it's certainly Worth a Look.