Here it is. The disc you’ve all been waiting for! Just in time for the 25 th Anniversary of UHF’s original theatrical release, Shout! Factory brings us the 25th Anniversary Edition of the story Channel 62!
“Weird Al” Yankovic stars as George Newman, a go-nowhere daydreamer stuck in an endless procession of dead-end jobs which he’s just too bored to pay attention to. Then his uncle Harvey wins a local UHF broadcasting station in a poker game and with no one to run it, it gets dumped in George’s lap.
The movie is a mess of movie and music spoofs and a whole bunch of random wackiness as the locals get involved and throw pretty much everything but the kitchen sink on the air to drive up the ratings. Michael Richards (Seinfeld’s Kramer) becomes an overnight sensation as Stanley Spadowski when George puts him on the air in a moment of desperation.
- 2014 San Diego Comic-Con Panel (the full 51 minute “Wonderful World of ‘Weird’ Al Yankovic panel with Al and superfan Jonah Ray)
- Audio Commentary with Al and director Jay Levey
- Deleted Scenes (nearly 20 minutes of deleted scenes introduced by Al where he’ll tell you how bad each one is)
- Behind-The-Scenes footage (a three and a half minute piece originally shot in the 80s)
- The original UHF music video (a lot of 80s music video references mixed with clips of the film)
- Productions stills (behind the scenes and some of the movie parodies)
- Easter eggs
- Promotional materials (movie poster stills and the original teaser and theatrical trailers)
- And Reversible Cover art
The Blu-ray release is essentially a port of the previous DVD release with the addition of the Comic-Con panel. So if you’ve already got the DVD, you probably don’t need to spend the money upgrading. The film quality isn’t going to be much of an improvement considering the ultra low budget the film was originally shot on and the Comic-Con panel is a bit dry. Honestly, the best feature here is the commentary. Director Jay Levey is pretty quiet throughout, but Al really has tons of interesting behind-the-scenes stories and information to impart. The inclusion of random ‘guest’ appearances by Emo Philips, Michael Richards and Victoria Jackson makes the whole affair feel quite random and definitely on the wacky side, but again, it’s a straight port from the previous DVD.
I’m quite a fan of cult classics and I am really happy to see UHF finally released on Blu Ray, even if I’m not quite a fan. I didn’t catch this back in the day, so there’s no nostalgia value for me and though I’m quite a fan of “Weird” Al’s music video work I find the movie doesn’t work as well as other parodies from the period (Airplane, Naked Gun). As such it was a fun renter, but re-watch-ability for me is quite low. For fans of the film, however, it’s probably never going to be better than this!
For more on the UHF 25th Anniversary Edition from Shout! Factory check out: