"The Toy (1982/Blu-ray/Image Entertainment)" Review

Review: Many years ago I was introduced to The Toy and subsequently I was also introduced to Richard Pryor for the first time as well. As I got older I discovered pleanty more of his films , but none stuck with me quite as much as this film did. Do I consider this to be his best film? Actually I do not, I personally hold that title for "See No Evil, Hear No Evil". Like you would expect from alot of what Richard Pryor has done there is a good balance between humor that sometimes goes on the racey side and some actually touching moments in The Toy.

In The Toy we follow Jack Brown (Richard Pryor) who is an out of work newspaper reporter who after looking all over for a job lands one at a toy store which leads him to being bought by spoiled rich kid Eric Bates (Scott Schwartz) to be his toy for a week. After Eric's father U.S. Bates (Jackie Gleason) finds out what he does he works out a deal with Jack to have him be his sons toy. From there Eric gets more than what he was expecting, instead of just someone to play with he gets a life lesson about friendship he will not soon forget.
When I stated before that there are some real touching moments I did mean it. They are mainly between Eric and Jack as they go from being 2 people who do not blend well to being the best of friends. Along with that you do get plenty of great laughs and silly hijinks that the 2 pull on each other and those who surround them. Most notably is when they decide to ruin a fundraiser that U.S. Bates is having after he destroyed the newspaper that Eric and Jack made.
The thing that I think really shines in this film is the cast that is involved. You get Richard Pryor, Jackie Gleason, Ned Beatty, Teresa Ganzel, Scott Schwartz and many others. With a cast like that how can you go wrong, especially with the pairing up of comic legends Pryor and Gleason. There really was no bad acting or unlikable characters in The Toy, even with Eric Bates being an annoying little brat at first. Also this film is directed by the legendary Richard Donner! Overall this film gets a solid 4.5 out of 5!
Now for the reason why most of you are reading this review and that is to find out if this blu-ray release is worth the upgrade or not. I have to say that it most definitely is! What you get is the best presentation that has ever been released on any home format, way better than the DVD. The picture is very much free from heavy film damage and most of all the grain is still intact, which is always a good thing. The only thing I think some people with probably complain about is the audio selection because you only get an Uncompressed PCM Mono soundtrack, which if you ask me I think it's fine. I would rather have the original audio than a possible crappy 5.1 mix.  My verdict is that this is definitely an upgrade from the previous releases!

-Daniel "Damnation" Lee

Director: Richard Donner
Genre: Comedy
Blu-ray Release Year: 2012
Theatrical Release Year: 1982

Time Length: 102 mins.
Company: Image Entertainment
Website: www.watchimage.com