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Starring: Jennifer Garner, Timothy Olyphant, Kevin Smith, Sam Jaeger, Fiona Shaw, Juliette Lewis
Director: Susannah Grant
Rating: PG (Some Sexual References)
Year Made: 2007




- Writer/Director Commentary with Susannah Grant and Kevin Smith
- Writer/Director Commentary with Susannah Grant and Cinematographer John Lindley
- From Concept to Completion-Featurette
- Deleted Scenes
- Rehersal Footage



Languages: English/Spanish/Thai/
Subtitles: English/Spanish/Thai Korean/Portuguese/Chinese
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1
Running Time: 1 hr 52 mins
Region Code: 3
Distributor: Origin Entertainment




After the death of her fiance, Gray movies in with her late love's best friends. While Sam and Dennis do their best to cheer Gray up, Fritz doesn't seem to care. Once Gray breaks through Fritz's defenses, however, she finally sees why her fiance thought so highly of him. As they spend more time together, Gray learns that her chances for love have not died out with her fiance. But when some surprise guests show up on their doorstep, it'll take the love of all her new friends to help Gray learn that life may be messy but love is messier.


The only reason this reviewer can think of why he does not exactly did not enjoy this romantic drama is – he is still a young lad.

The 112-minute picture tells the story of how a young woman grapples with life after the sudden death of her fiancé. She lives her new life in the presence of her fiancé’s friends, and before she knows it, she uncovers a not-so-nice secret about the man she thought she loved, and also falls in love with a man she thought she’d never love.

Come on, a synopsis like that has the words “chick flick” spelt all over it, and how can you blame a 20-odd young man for not being able to connect with the characters in the movie?

It does not help that the plot meanders aimlessly quite a bit as our protagonist tries to find balance in her messy life, creating very predictable storylines that anyone can see coming at the beginning of the movie. There aren’t many ups and downs too, and all you see is the directionless girl drifting her life from one scene to the next.

Thankfully, Jennifer Garner puts in an earnest performance in this otherwise bland movie. We are sure she could have done worse (Elektra, anyone?), given the rather uninteresting story to work with. Funnyman Kevin Smith (Clerks, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back), the shy-looking Sam Jaeger (Hart’s War, Lucky Number Slevin) and the brooding Timothy Olyphant (TV’s Deadwood) play Garner’s new pals with enough chemistry, while Juliette Lewis (Natural Born Killers, Cold Creek Manor) shines as a woman who appears in Garner’s life unexpectedly.

While we recognize writer Susannah Grant’s previous screenplays like Pocahontas (1995) and In Her Shoes (2005), the first-time director did not exactly score with her latest work. Sure, the whole idea of “catch and release’ sounds philosophical, interesting and engaging (it refers to how fishermen should release the fish they caught in the sea to give them a new life), but it just does not work here, especially not with the younger viewers.

Of course, one can say that I’m not a woman, how would I be able to feel these rich emotions of life? Either way, it’s probably because I haven’t experienced what they call “quarter-life crisis” – yet.


This Code 3 DVD contains not one, but two commentaries - they sure have lots to talk about for a rather lackluster movie like this. The first “Commentary by writer/director Susannah Grant and Kevin Smith” does not really focus on what you are seeing on the screen. It has more information like where Grant got her inspirations from. An interesting bit is how she used to interview unhappy people on television without losing herself in depression. Also, Grant seems to be tickled by every one-liner Smith spouts.

In contrast, the second “Commentary by writer/director Susannah Grant and cinematographer John Lindley” does not sound as lively. Lindley (Pleasantville, Bewitched) discusses with Grant how his cinematography achieved maximum effect despite a small room setting, and how Smith looks extra fat on screen. Grant, on the other hand, does not seem amused.

There is a 20-minute “From Concept to Completion Featurette” which has Grant and her cast talk about the inspirations of the film, and how the title came about. In a heartwarming moment, Grant also talks about her the producers entrusted her despite her lack of experience in directing movies.

Three four-odd minute “Audition Footage” showcasing Smith, Jaeger and Lewis’ relaxed rehearsal sequences and two unsubstantial “Deleted Scenes” are also included in the bonus features. Check out “Previews” of other Sony Pictures’ releases for “The Pursuit of Happyness”, “Reign Over Me”, “Are We Done Yet?” and “Surf’s Up”.


The disc’s visual transfer is clear enough without making the movie any blander, while the audio track is available in Dolby Digital English, Spanish, Portuguese and Thai 5.1.



Review by John Li


. Catch & Release (Soundtrack Review)

Other titles from Origin Entertainment:

. Ghost Rider

. The Pursuit of Happyness

. The Illusionist


This review is made possible with the kind support from Origin Entertainment


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