Misery (1990) [Blu-ray]

Genre(s): Horror / Thriller
MGM || R - 107 minutes - $24.99 || September 15, 2009
Reviewer: Brad Lowenberg || Posted On: 2009-10-05

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.:: F I L M ::.
The Film

.: F E A T U R E S :.

Special Features

.:: V I D E O ::.

.:: A U D I O ::.

B L U - R A Y

Blu-ray Exclusives

.:: O V E R A L L ::.
Director: Rob Reiner
Writer(s): Stephen King (novel); William Goldman (screenplay)
Cast: James Caan, Kathy Bates

Theatrical Release Date: November 30, 1990

Supplemental Material:
  • 2 Feature Commentaries
  • 7 Featurettes

Technical Information:
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Widescreen (1.85)
  • English (DTS-HD MA 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English SDH

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.::THE FILM::.

Paul Sheldon (Caan) is a writer of the popular 'Misery' series and after killing the title character off (in a soon to be release final novel) he decides to take a break and spend some time in his private Colorado hideaway while he writes a book for his new series. Things take a turn for the worse when he is caught in a blizzard and flips his car off the local highway. His luck turns when Annie (Bates), a recluse, finds him and takes him back to her place to clean him up. Since Annie was previously a nurse, she can care for Paul until the roads clear up.

Things quickly take a turn for the worse when Paul notices Annie is not only his "#1 fan" but a little bit off as well. Her mood changes into a fury as soon as Annie reads Paul's final 'Misery' novel and finds out Paul has not only killed the title character but ended the series. The film deals with a classic cat-and-mouse game of Paul trying to escape and even sympathize with Annie as a way to defeat her.

The film works on many levels. Given that there are really only two characters in the film, nearly everything is centered on either Caan or Bates and both are terrific in portraying their characters. Bates knows how to play a really sweet girl one minute and flip into a crazed maniac wielding a hammer and piece of wood *gulp* the next. Caan was also great trying to find numerous ways to trick Annie into either drinking a spiked drink or assaulting her.


Since this film was 'finished' by MGM in late 2006/early 2007 the Blu-ray itself has no Special Features. Thankfully, MGM has tossed in a DVD version of the film which does include Special Features. They are all (obviously) presented in SD.

Commentary by Director Rob Reiner
Commentary by Screenwriter William Goldman

- Misery Loves Company
- Marc Shaiman's Musical Misery Tour
- Diagnosing Annie Wilkes
- Advice for the Stalked
- Profile of a Stalker
- Celebrity Stalkers
- Anti-Stalking Laws

-- When itís all said and done there is roughly a 1 hour running time between the seven featurettes and really its only the first that has anything insightful regarding the film (production, interviews etc,). Everything else runs only a few minutes long and seems almost like PSA's for what you should do if in the same situation.

Rounding out the DVD is a few theatrical trailers.


Misery is presented in 1.85:1 (MPEG4) on a 50GB Disc. This is one of MGMs' best looking catalog titles (not in the Bond franchise) since the Blu-ray format launched. Colors are perfected over the previous DVD, everything looks razor-sharp and no DNR/EE has been applied. Only a few scenes seemed to feel a bit off (in terms of the picture quality) but otherwise this is a spectacular release.

MGM has included an English 5.1 DTS MA track for this release. Sadly, the audio may not be a strong as the video and most of it is concentrated on the front speakers. Rears are hardly used and the dialog tends to have an echo affect to it every once and a while. Subtitles in English SDH, Spanish, and just about every other language possible (literally 15).


Misery is a really great film with a 107 run time that just flies by. I've seen the film before, but re-watching it on Blu-ray brought out tons of new details I've never seen before. With excellent Picture quality, average Audio and Bonus features (sadly, only on the DVD) I'd say grab this Blu-ray since it can be had for $20 or less.