Satisfaction is a transitional project in so many ways. This was one of the first American films of Liam Neeson, who would go on to mildly excite the world as Henry Ducard in Batman Begins. Before Mystic Pizza came out, the world was exposed to Julia Roberts as Daryle.
And what of the main attraction of the film? Well, the film was apparently intended to be a starring vehicle for Justine Bateman, whose previous claim to fame was from Family Ties, playing the do…ey sister Mallory. So when one of her first scenes was as a high school valedictorian, it confused me. How could she be so articulate? Well, she’s not, and even admits it later on the film. But her main desire in the film is to be a rock and roll star. I don’t know how you can rock out with a tucked in t-shirt, but she’s a triple threat in the film. She sings dumb lyrics, plays a guitar, and even rocks out with a cowbell. I’m shocked, shocked, that the film didn’t go anywhere.
It’s kinda funny that a 4 woman band with a male keyboardist audition for a house band in a club owned by Neeson’s character. I always thought that a house band was not supposed to have a singer, I thought singers were supposed to clam up. And not only does Bateman not clam up, but she actually sings in the movie (if she’s lip-synching, I hope the person who actually recorded the vocals did the world a favor and left the business). It’s not the sound of music, to quote Lewis Black, “it’s the sound of chaos”.
For all the creative energy that the ‘70s gave us, the following decade provided little in the way of cinematic gems. Some films may have some lasting pop culture significance, others may be good, and this is neither. If you’re over 30, you can taste the stale beer and whippets when you see this grace your TV either by broadcast or (deep breath) DVD player.
Well, you’ve got a flipper disc that has a fullscreen version on one side, and a 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen version on the other. And surprisingly, the widescreen version looks pretty good. Not a lot of edge enhancement to speak of, or maybe this thing looks REALLY good on a 60 inch HDTV with an upconverting DVD player, I dunno.
Wait, a rock and roll movie that doesn’t have at least a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack? Um, OK. But wait, after listening to Bateman and her group prattle on for 90 minutes, a 2 channel Dolby soundtrack is fine with me.
A music video and a trailer. A forgettable movie gets forgettable extras, so it’s fitting.
Was I a little bit harsh for this film. Well, watch it on TV when you get a chance, and let me know how right I am. Go see one of several thousand other films that are similar and, to another extent, better than this one.
Special Features List
- Music Video