Same Kind of Different as Me is a 2017 American Christian drama film that was directed by Michael Carney and written by Ron Hall, Alexander Foard, and Michael Carney. It is based on the 2006 book of the same name by Ron Hall, Denver Moore, and Lynn Vincent. The film stars Greg Kinnear, Renee Zellweger, Djimon Honsou, Olivia Holt, Jon Voight, and Stephanie Leigh Schlund.
Chronicling the tale of international art dealer Ron Hall as he must befriend a dangerous homeless man in order to save his already struggling marriage. His wife, whose dreams ultimately lead all three of them on a journey that they will never forget. Theatrically released on October 20, 2017, by Pure Flix Entertainment. Production for the film began on October 20, 2014, when Renee Zellweger joined the cast to play the role of Deborah. The film was originally scheduled to be released on April 29, 2016, but was pushed back to February 3, 2017. On December 30, 2016, the film was pushed back again to October 20, 2017, and was acquired by Pure Flix Entertainment.
The Film Itself (3/5):
I went into watching Same Kind of Different as Me with absolutely no knowledge of the storyline at play. The story that we’re given with this movie, while it wasn’t the greatest, it wasn’t all that bad. There were a decent amount of inspirational moments that played out that I found to be enjoyable and that made me kind of think about some of the erroneous thoughts that had crossed my mind throughout life. The performances of Zellweger, Kinnear and Honsou were spectacular as they were a perfect fit for these roles. However, I did have some problems with the underlying faith messages that were presented as I personally feel that they were unnecessary as the considerations that the Hall family had towards the homeless people they encountered should be out of compassion, good morals and common sense. In addition to that, the pacing to the story felt considerably slow at times. The movement was more like a rollercoaster as it did have its moments where it picked up and other moments where it slowed way down.
Picture Quality (4/5):
Obviously taking place during a time where there was more of a public representation of intolerance against the African American community, the visual presentation of Same Kind of Different as Me looked really great on my living room television. While it was difficult to really gain an understanding of the decade that this film took place in, I was able to visually see and understand everything as it moved onward. There really weren’t any scenes that I found to have any kind of visual distortion at all and the Blu-ray release did a really great job at presenting what they were trying to tell us.
Audio Quality (4/5):
Packaged with an English DTS-HD Master Audio track, Same Kind of Different as Me does everything that it can to offer an all out immersive experience for its viewers. Making perfect use of the front and rear channels, I would have loved to have seen this release be packaged with a 7.1 audio track. Mostly because of the benefit it would have provided as Denver shares his stories with Ron and Deborah as it would have really put the viewers in the middle of his past experiences. The track that was used in this release was clean, with crystal clear dialogue and really did a decent job at placing emphasis on some of the more notable sequences that played out.
The Packaging (2.5/5):
Same Kind of Different as Me comes packaged in your standard single-disc Blu-ray amaray case. Within that case is the standard Blu-ray copy of the film, with the disc featuring no artwork that’s relative to the film whatsoever outside of the standard release text and blue background. There are no DVD copies of the film included in this release; however, a digital copy redemption pamphlet has been included for streaming opportunities. A slipcover has also been provided during the initial print run of this release that features the same piece of artwork that’s on the case art.
Special Features (4/5):
There are only a few features that have been included on the Blu-ray release of Same Kind of Different as Me that offer not only an expanded view into the story that they’re presenting, but a look at some of the work that went into making this film available. Included with this release is:
- Feature Audio Commentary By Director Michael Carney and Writers Ron Hall Alexander Ford
- Deleted & Extended Scenes With Optional Audio Commentary
- Love Is Patient, Love Is Kind
- The Making Of Same Kind of Different as Me
- Filming In Mississippi
Codec: MPEG-4 AVC
Original Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
French: Dolby Digital 5.1
Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1
German: Dolby Digital 5.1
English, English SDH, French, German, Spanish
Original Film: 119 minutes
Overall, Same Kind of Different as Me wasn’t a completely horrible film; nor was it a horrible experience. The story that they provide with this movie is one that is a bit heartwarming and really opens your mind. The performances that were done by the four titular cast members were exceptionally done and they should be praised for them. The only problems that I had with this movie was with the underlying religious subcontext and occasional bits of slowness with the pacing. If you’re going to open your world to someone who is living in a tough situation like Denver and his peers, it really should be out of true compassion and having good morals and shouldn’t be related to religious beliefs at all. The visual and audible presentation of this Blu-ray was really nicely done and was clean; despite the difficulty in trying to gain an understanding of the era in which this film takes place. The special features were pretty good and offer a nice look into the film at hand. If you’re considering grabbing this release for your collection, I’d recommend renting it prior to buying it. I say that because it is a film that not everybody will like. Same Kind of Different as Me comes out onto Blu-ray and DVD beginning on Tuesday, February 20, 2018.
Note: This Blu-ray was sent to us for review. This has not affected our judgement or editorial process in any way. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding this process.