Blu-ray Review: Ray Donovan – The Movie



During the seventh season of Ray Donovan, the producers let it be known that the next season would be the final season. They had plans to bring the series to a conclusion and had lined things for the penultimate season. And then unexpectedly Showtime announced they had canceled the show. This was a serious shock to everyone from star Liev Schreiber to fans who’d been engrossed in the tale of the Hollywood fixer with a colorful family. There was quite a bit of unfinished business in the season seven episodes. Shortly after the originally announcement, Showtime reconsidered and allowed the show to make a movie to wrap things up. Schreiber and producer David Hollander sat down to type up a script that would accomplish what had been planned for an entire season in less than two hours. Ray Donovan – The Movie had a unique challenge of wrapping up the series and being entertaining to viewers that don’t have a clue about the 82 episodes that came before.

The movie opens with a montage that sets up the action. The narrative is framed by Ray Donovan (Schreiber) talking on the phone about what just happened to his therapist (M*A*S*H*’s Alan Alda). He recounts how his hustling father Mickey (Jon Voight) has screwed him and others over and vanished with millions. Thanks to a tracking device, Ray hunts down his dad to their old neighborhood in Boston’s Southie neighborhood. This leads to Ray having flashbacks to his complicated childhood relationships with dad. This gives viewers a chance to see the origin story of how Ray got known as a man who can solve problems for the rich and famous when a major Hollywood film came to the neighborhood and wanted to be authentic. The movie reveals the final moments between Ray and Mickey as the movie comes to an explosive climax where the past and the present collide.

Ray Donovan – The Movie is works without you having to watch the previous 82 episodes. The script makes it, so you don’t have to be a super fan to enjoy the movie. What makes the movie extremely compelling is Bill Heck (The Leftovers) as the younger version of Mickey. He brings so much to the character that I wished he’d been playing the character all these years instead of Voight. He is magnificent when he’s a hustling on the street or being a hardcore Southie resident. He’s the one who has to explain to the movie director how he needed to set up a scene where the star shoots a victim on the street. Heck makes me wish that more of the film was told in the flashbacks.

Fans who were eager for a sense of resolution to the series should feel satisfied that they wrote Showtime demanded the movie. Leiv and David Hollander didn’t hold back giving a sense of finality to the series. You sense that this is it when the final scene plays out between Ray and Mickey. There are no more situations where Ray will be the fixer. Ray Donovan – The Movie gets it right where so many final episodes were emotional letdowns. It works as a final episode and a standalone movie.

The video is 1.78:1 anamorphic. The transfer is sharp so you can enjoy the details of the Boston locations. The audio is Dolby Digital 5.1 surround. You’ll get the sense of being around the T stations. The movie is subtitled in case the Boston accents get too thick.

No bonus features.

CBS DVD presents Ray Donovan – The Movie. Directed by David Hollander. Screenplay by David Hollander & Liev Schreiber. Starring Liev Schreiber, Eddie Marsan, Dash Mihok, Jon Voight & Bill Heck. Running Time: 100 minutes. Rating: Unrated. Release Date: May 24, 2022.

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