Blu-ray Review: Showgirls

Showgirls Blu ray Blu ray Review: Showgirls

Showgirls starts off with Nomi Malone (Elizabeth Berkley) making her way to Las Vegas. The unintentional comedy starts as she hitch-hikes, and picked up by an Elvis look-alike. She gets to Las Vegas, and realizes that everybody is as selfish as a 3-year old with a candy bar. She meets the right people, and finds herself in one of the biggest shows in Vegas.

When this movie first came out, I remembered the buzz due to its NC-17 rating. To top it off, it stars one of TVs most beloved characters, Jessie (Elizabeth Berkley) from Save by the Bell. Showgirls was trashed by the critics, and it was only remembered for its NC-17 rating. I saw this movie in the theatre 15 years ago. So, I was curious as what the Blu-ray has to offer. Yes, this film has more to offer than Berkley getting naked every chance she gets. Director, Paul Verhoeven did a great job by keeping the acting, and the script over-the-top throughout the film.  Although the movie is pure cheese, Verhoeven supposedly still gets upset today when people laugh at the movie.   What makes this movie so campy are the stupid characters.  You have a douchebag in Zach Carey (Kyle Machlachlan) who has 90’s trademark hairstyle and plays Berkley’s love interest.  Another winner is James Smith (Glenn Plummer) as a performing arts dancer that stalks Berkley.  He’s suppose to be an expert dancer but the first time you see him on the dance floor, I thought he was messing around.  But the awesome script says otherwise and Nomi starts complimenting him on the dance moves.  It’s scenarios like these that made this flick an instant cult classic.

Video:  The glitz and glamour of Las Vegas is captured very well in this blu-ray release. For the most part, the scenes are very crisp; although, some scenes are grainy, but I believe that’s how it was intended. The colors are vivid and clean, which is very important for a Las Vegas-themed film. The glitter and the heavy-lighting works really well, and the flesh tones are nicely balanced to reddish-yellow colors, which is very necessary for films with lots of skin tones. I really hate edge-enhancements, so I am very pleased to say that I did not detect any. The details from the glamorous costumes, highly saturated lipsticks look amazing. The scenes are naturally sharp, which gives it a “film’ look. However,  there are few scenes where the grains are slightly distracting; but overall, the grains for this transfer are well managed.
Video Grade: A-

showgirls 1 Blu ray Review: Showgirls

Audio: The lossless DTS-HD audio is nice and crisp. The dialogue is clear, even when loud music plays in the backgrounds. The stage scenes are the best, as it makes you feel as if you are watching a show live in Vegas. The great sound, combined with the sharp imagery makes the flashy scenes come to life. The surround effect, and the echoing of the music within the theater feels very bold and realistic, the sub-woofer for the background music is also utilized very well.
Audio Grade : B

showgirls 2 Blu ray Review: Showgirls

Extras: The extras on this disc contains several gems.

– The Greatest Movie Ever Made: Audio Commentary by David Schmader.  This hilarious track just rips Showgirls from beginning to end.  Schmader is an author who decided to have screening of Showgirls in his hometown so the audience can mock the film.  He got called by the studio and asked him to do the commentary.  You know a movie is bad when the studio doesn’t take it seriously.  This is one of the most entertaining tracks I’ve heard in a while.  Not only does Schmader talk smack but he also has behind the scenes stories.

– Pole Dancing: Finding Your Inner Stripper.  Boring featurette on how strippers should be respected for their hard work.

– Lap Dance Tutorial Featuring The World-Famous Girls Of Scores.  Another waste of time extra.  The Score girls give tips on how to make a lap dance seductive.  I don’t know how this extra could be so bland, but they achieved it.

– A Showgirls Diary.  Pretty insightful behind the scenes diary.  Verhoeven is at the top of his game as we see him tell Berkley how to get an emotion out of her character.  You really do feel sorry for him as he tried really hard to make the movie dramatic and serious.  You also see the dance choreographers as they teach the actors how to perform.  Recommended!

– Showgirls Fact-Up Trivia.  This is a pop up trivia track as you watch the movie.  It’s interesting and well thought out.

The Blu-Ray also comes with the DVD version of the movie.  20th Century Fox has been releasing their catalog titles as a combo pack and I like this trend.  It gives the Blu-Ray more value and introduces DVD only owners to the HD world.

Grade: B

This was an enjoyable experience for me. The movie itself was very enjoyable due to the over-the-top acting and script writing, I was laughing the entire time. The video and audio quality makes the experience even better. The clarity of the video is impressive, and the audio itself was well designed. Paul Verhoeven should be proud of this gem, instead of being upset that people saw Showgirls as a dark-comedy.
Overall Grade: B

(Thanks to for the images)

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