“Flashdance” never looked better in its 40 years than as a 4K release by Paramount Pictures.

There is something special about movies that feel like time capsules that in no way, shape, or form stand the true test of time. While the love and admiration of them is certainly questioned with a modern lens, they are still not seen as bad films, especially when considering the time period provides an understanding of that love. However, the most interesting part of it is seeing their original release date in comparison to the other two classics of the same decade and realizing that this is the first one that could arguably say it paved the way for the other two classics. This, of course, is referring to Paramount’s 1983 classic Flashdance, a film that, if nothing else, has one of the best soundtracks of almost all time, and is still rather entertaining, even solely as a product of its time.

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L-R: Jennifer Beals as Alex Owens and Michael Nouri as Nick Hurley in FLASHDANCE. Photo courtesy of Paramount Pictures.

The film focuses on Alex Owens (Jennifer Beals), an industrial welder and exotic dancer living in Pittsburgh who wants to get into the Pittsburgh Conservatory of Dance. There is a blossoming relationship with her boss, Nick Hurley (Michael Nouri), that doesn’t develop all too much past them having a romantic interest in each other. The story is truly barebones as it is centred on Alex wanting to become a dancer and the music is intergraded into that journey. While the film is flashy and full of pizazz, it is the iconic musical numbers, legendary dance scenes, and Jennifer Beals’s performance that transform Flashdance into the modern classic it is today.

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Jennifer Beals as Alex Owens in FLASHDANCE. Photo courtesy of Paramount Pictures.

With Flashdance getting a 4K release on its 40th anniversary, we take a deep dive into how the disc looks and if its worthy of the consumers dollar. First and foremost, for a 40-year-old movie, this 4K restoration is astonishing. While boasting HDR, the film certainly looks pristine while still having that ‘80s flare. It doesn’t suffer from some of those bad DNR transfers other ‘80s films have, it doesn’t try to erase the fact that the film is an ‘80s movie but certainly cleans it up, so it doesn’t get trapped in the grainy dilapidated copy either.  This truly is one of the cleanest transfers of an ‘80s film that has been released to date. While diving further into some of the more intricate specs on the 4K transfer of Flashdance, it appears that this is a native 4K, which essentially means that when the film was originally shot in the 1980s, it was shot in 2160p and it is not upscaled.

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L-R: Jennifer Beals as Alex Owens and Sunny Johnson as Jeanie Szabo in FLASHDANCE. Photo courtesy of Paramount Pictures.

When looking further at this home release, it is important to dive into the special features. While, I cannot speak to how the Paramount Presents Blu-ray looks in comparison to the 4K (the 2020 re-release), that exact Blu-ray is the one included in the 4K blu-ray digital combo pack. This means you get the featurette that was released with the 2020 combo pack entitled “Filmmaker Focus: Director Adrian Lyne on Flashdance,” along with the previously released features that were released on the first Blu-ray: “The Look of Flashdance,” “Releasing the Flashdance Phenomenon,” and the theatrical trailer. While the features are not new to this release and solely exist on the Blu-ray, it is the restoration first and foremost that is the selling point for this ‘80s classic. If this is a favourite of yours, or a classic you have yet to see, Paramount seems to be pricing their 4K releases the fairest of all studios, so the release is essentially a no-brainer. So strap in, get down to the wielding yard, and get ready for Flashdance!

Flashdance Special Features:

  • Filmmaker Focus: Director Adrian Lyne on Flashdance (5:51)
  • The Look of Flashdance (9:12)
  • Releasing the Flashdance Phenomenon (8:52)
  • Theatrical Trailer (1:41)

Available on 4K UHD Blu-ray Combo and digital April 11th, 2023.
Returning to select theaters return to select theaters on April 26th & 30th, 2023.

For more information, head to the official Paramount Pictures Flashdance webpage.
For more information on theatrical screenings, head to the official Fathom Events website.


Categories: Home Release, Home Video, Recommendation, Reviews, streaming

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