UHF (1989/25th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray/Shout! Factory) Review

In the 80's and 90's one of the biggest musical acts was a wacky man by the name of Weird Al Yankovich. He had a great sense of humor and knew how to perfectly parody some of the current hit songs. In July of 1989 Weird Al made his big screen debut in the film "UHF" which was not a flop, but did not hit it that big at the box office. Over the years it seems like this film has started to receive the respect and bigger audience that it truly does deserve. For me this was a frequent rental from the video store and ended up in my collection as soon as it hit DVD. Now do I just like it looking from a nostalgic view or is this really a good comedy that still holds up?! Let's jump into this autopsy and see what this film has to offer!

Weird Al plays as the wacky day dreamer George Newman who has the worst luck at every job he takes on. After his uncle wins a local rundown uhf station he is put as the head of the station. After putting the janitor Stanley Spadowski (Michael Richards) on his own show the station starts to show some real rating and inspires George to make some new and original content for the station. The ratings are on fire and local affiliate owner R. J. Fletcher (Kevin McCarthy) wants nothing more than to crush the UHF station. Follow George Newman and the rest of the wacky characters as they fight back against the evil RJ Fletcher!
After watching this film for probably the 1,000th time I can firmly say that it still holds up as fresh as it did the first time I saw it. I even enjoy the jokes that much more! The humor is over the top and does make fun of things in pop culture simular to what Weird Al does in his music, and yes I do know Weird Al helped write it. For me what does it is the characters, one of my favorites is by far that of Stanley Spadowski which is played by a young Michael Richards. Stanley is basically a care free man child (like Pee Wee Herman) that I think alot of wish we could sometimes be. Some of the other great cast choices include Kevin McCarthy (Invasion of the Body Snatchers), Billy Barty, Fran Drescher (The Nanny), David Proval (Sopranos), and Gedde Watanabe (Sixteen Candles). The only cast member I really didn't like was Victoria Jackson who was unfunny and more annoying than Fran Drescher's laugh on The Nanny!
Some of my favorite scenes (which there are alot) are ones where they make fun of commercials, one in perticular is the one for Spatula City. The other that comes to mind is Crazy Ernie's Car Emporium where he says the great line of "I'm gonna club a seal to make a better deal!", which is a parody of the real Crazy Eddie commercials. There is so much great humor and parts that I like about this film I couldn't fit it all in this review. One other scene I will mention is when George Newman has his show before Stanley takes over he has on a guest who is a wood shop teacher from a local school and he ends up cutting off his finger and acts like it's not that big of a deal as he squirts blood everywhere. When it comes down to it I always have a blast from beginning to end watching this film and I highly suggest it to anyone who wants a comedy that is wacky and over the top!
The presentation on this release is like usual with Shout! Factory releases and looks great! It is definitely and upgrade from the older release from MGM. When it comes to the special features it seems like they ported over the same ones from the 2002 DVD release, but they did add one new special feature which is of Weird Al at San Diego Comic Con 2014 doing a Retrospective Panel. This is a nice special to be added and if you have never seen any of the other special features before then those will be a treat for you as well. Overall this is a great release of what I see as one of the funniest comedies of all time!

-Daniel Lee

Director: Jay Levey
Lead Actor/Actress: Weird Al Yankovich, Michael Richards, Kevin McCarthy, Dave Bowe
Genre: Comedy
Blu-ray Release Year: 2014
Theatrical Release Year: 1989
Time Length: 97 mins.
Rating: PG-13
Region Code: A
Release Company: Website: www.shoutfactory.com