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And Overboard is Where this Belongs

Ignore the hokey and campy premise of Overboard. It copies that of the Kurt Russell/Goldie Hawn-starring original, an ‘80s lark suited to the decade. Now, not so much. Anna Faris is fine as Hawn’s modern counterpart, although in a role reversal. This time, a super rich man is afflicted with amnesia and Faris convinces him he is her husband.

That’s ignorable based on Overboard’s repulsiveness. Even as a piece of escapist romantic comedy, the conceit is that of one-percenter revenge porn. Eugenio Derbez plays the smarmy son of a construction CEO, living his good life aboard a gifted yacht when he’s then taken advantage of by Faris.

Derbez is not playing a good guy. He’s a sexist dirtbag who belittles those below him, even Farris – he tosses her overboard when she hops on to clean the yacht’s carpets, one of the three jobs she holds down. No parity is intended. The two leads live opposite lives based entirely on their financial situation.

“I hate rich people!” shouts Farris at one point, as if Overboard wasn’t clear on this point

To equalize things, Farris forces the now amnesiac Derbez (who stumbled overboard while partying) to run her household, get a construction gig, and generally be abused for the sake of a middle class audience. “I hate rich people!” shouts Farris at one point, as if Overboard wasn’t clear on this point. Rich guy falls down. Rich guy slips on spaghetti. Rich guy can’t use a stove. Funny, maybe, but to an extreme equivalent to an obese guy farting or falling down in an equally desperate comedy.

There’s no secret where this movie is going. Farris’ scheming is inevitably exposed (and far too late in this elongated dud), Derbez realizes he actually loves her, and boom, wedding over the credits. What’s learned? Nothing. Farris gets away with her plan. Derbez is still rich. Everyone smiles and walks away happy. A struggling middle class single mom doesn’t need triple employment. Rather, she just needs to score a well financed Mexican prince.

The message is supposed to be that hard work matters. Family matters. Yet, neither does. Farris runs pizza delivery in-between dropping her daughters off at school, but that’s not why she succeeds. As much as Overboard is portrayed as the middle class striking back against arrogant affluence, it’s instead a dopey crime story where no one is punished and success is determined by way of a fairy tale. It’s Cinderella for the 2010’s American economy, minus the glass shoe, and more deception.


While hardly elegant with its cinematography, Overboard’s digital source does have spark. Notably, color shines. Saturation levels remain high, popping reds from the pizza delivery uniform to the green trees outside of Farris’ home. Flesh tones remain natural with pleasing results.

Overboard is bright too. At times, there’s a bit too much bite. Some whites blow out in spots. Otherwise, it’s in control. Sunlight streams in with energy, adding vibrancy to the image. At sea, the sun glistens from the water with pep. Black levels nicely wind up too.

Lionsgate’s disc isn’t one for detail. Resolution sags. Facial definition isn’t a factor. Most of the detail comes from exterior shots, with trees or docks rendered better than anything up close. That contrast counters, adding more depth than anything related to fidelity.

The real concern is the encode. Noise pops up regularly, and Overboard’s image takes on a fuzzy, messy quality. Artifacts try to hide, but peer from denser colors. This one needs a bit more breathing room.


Outside of a few musical inclusions, the DTS-HD 5.1 mix is rather dulled. Activity in stereos or surrounds is held to a few scenes at a public pool and a party. Everything else speaks clearly from the center.

Soundtrack selections offer a touch of LFE support. At least the subwoofer is indeed active and not forgotten. For a routine rom com, Overboard is built for what it needs.


Writer/director Rob Greenberg, co-writer/co-director Bob Fisher, and producer Benjamin Odell team up for a commentary track. From there, it’s a handful of minor featurettes. Chemistry is Comedy details the remake process and the various characters. This is the longest piece at 14-minutes. The Mexican cast speaks on the importance of their involvement in Culture Clash, a six-minute collection of interviews. The co-director process is looked at in Captains of the Ship, a small blurb at four minutes.

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Overboard’s revenge comedy is dull and mindless, placating the middle class with a story of scoring a rich husband to solve their woes.

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