It’s been a while since I’ve seen “Adventures In Babysitting”, a film that has gained a sort of “cult” status over the years since its release. Watching it again on this new DVD release, I still found it enjoyable, but a little darker than I remembered. Elizabeth Shue plays Chris, a suburban teen who finds herself babysitting a group of kids after her date gets cancelled. When her best friend calls her and needs saving, the entire group of them piles in their car and heads downtown, only to get sidetracked by car thieves and truck drivers. The most entertaining scene still is Shue’s performance in a blues club.
Maybe I enjoyed this film years ago, but watching it now I’m not as entertained by it. Shue’s performance still holds the movie together nicely, but I didn’t remember the rest of the kids being this annoying. At this age, the film provided a few good laughs and a few minor ones, but it remains a pretty minor comedy.
VIDEO: In comparison to the horror that was the image quality of some of the earlier catalog titles from Disney, “Adventures In Babysitting” fares pretty well. Images are clear and although they’re not sharp, they’re at least fairly crisp and pleasing for a film that’s over 10 years old now. Colors are nicely rendered although not fantastic. There is some grain on occasion; there are a few scenes where it is noticable, and times where the image is free of it. Detail is good, and even nighttime scenes look passable. Aside from the mildly grainy look of the picture on occasion, there really aren’t any of the usual flaws. There’s no shimmering at all, and although it’s not of great quality,it’s slightly better than I’d expected.
SOUND: The sound is nothing impressive, but it had some suprising positives. The Michael Kamen score sounds rich, clean and stronger than I’d expect from a movie like this. There’s not much else to it, with dialogue sounding acceptable; understandable, but a little thin at times.
EXTRAS:. Although I’m happy with the general quality of this catalog release from Disney, one thing hasn’t changed from the previous catalog titles of theirs I’ve reviewed: absolutely no extras. There’s not even a trailer included with this release.
Final Thoughts Although the audio/video quality isn’t terrible, the lack of extras is unfortunate. Columbus could have recorded a commentary for this and talked about his adventures making this film, which was his first directorial effort.
The Film 75/C = (375/500 possible points)
Stars: ** 1/2
Video 76/C = (324/400 possible points)
Audio: 83/B = (352/400 possible points)
Extras: 0/F = (0/300 possible points)
Menus 65/D = (130/200 possible points)
Value: 75/C = (225/300 possible points)