Four Eddie Murphy classics get new releases this December

It took an upcoming sequel release to spur Paramount Home Entertainment into putting out some of Eddie Murphy’s finest work onto Ultra-HD. Building buzz with a 4K version of the original (and still brilliant) comedy Coming to America, along with a 4K version of Beverly Hills Cop, and two Blu-ray releases of Trading Places and The Golden Child, coming from new 2K remasters. Sadly, Coming to America 2 has been pushed to a release date of March 2021 rather than this December as originally intended, but we still get to take home these four treats this month.


Join Eddie Murphy on an unforgettable comic quest to the New World. As an African prince, it’s time for him to find a princess… and the mission leads him and his most loyal friend (Arsenio Hall) to Queens, New York. In disguise as an impoverished immigrant, the pampered prince quickly finds himself a new job, new friends, new digs, new enemies and lots of trouble.

The new Ultra-HD format has been a revelation for some films, revealed the shortcomings or age of others, or showcased a rather underwhelming effort from studios with their “faux 4K” offerings. Thankfully the restoration here, overseen by director John Landis (The Blues Brothers, An American Werewolf in London, Trading Places) looks great. A Blu-ray I have for the film from a few years ago looks remarkably soft/flat and drab in comparison. On Ultra-HD, texture and detail are superb, colors are strongly represented, and a nice cinematic quality, aided by a healthy grain that persists throughout. The depth of imagery in New York stands out and the opening in Zamunda is given a colorful and vibrant new lease on life.

Extra Features:

As is the trend for most 4Ks so far, this release ports over most of the legacy extras from previous home video releases:

  • Prince-ipal Photography: The Coming Together of America: Around 25 min in length, it’s a nice collection of interviews with key cast and crew members chatting about the production, Eddie Murphy as the driving force behind the concept, the themes explored (notably race) and how the diverse and talented cast assembled
  • Fit for Akeem: The Costumes of Coming to America: Some of the outfits are typical of 80s New York, but the garb of Zamunda feels like a proto-Wakanda effort. Great to see a featurette exploring this aspect of the film that is shown up so well in the 4K presentation
  • Character Building: The Many Faces of Rick Baker: The legend in prosthetics worked his magic transforming Murphy into a host of memorable characters for the film, so you get a chance with this to see the process/planning behind it
  • Composing America: The Musical Talents of Nile Rodgers: Touches on the work for the CtA score, and his career in general
  • A Vintage Sit-Down with Eddie & Arsenio: Just under 5 minutes, but it’s a treat to see the pair riffing off each other and reminiscing about their time together on the film
  • Theatrical Trailer:
  • Photo Gallery:
  • Digital download code:


BEVERLY HILLS COP follows the one-and-only Axel Foley, a street-smart cop from Detroit. Tracking down his best friend’s killer in Beverly Hills, Axel smashes through the local barriers in a hilarious, high-speed pursuit of justice.

Like the Coming to America release, the 4K Beverly Hills Cop presents a sharp image with impressive definition, and an assured command of colors, detail, and clarity. There’s also a nice grain, one that shows up better in the darker scenes, loses integrity somewhat in lighter, outdoor moments, where a hint of softness is sometimes apparent. Overall it’s a superb presentation for one of Eddie Murphy’s most memorable and entertaining features, and a clear step-up from what this reviewer has seen previously.

Extra Features:

Legacy features come from previous releases most on the included Blu-ray disc), with several ported over to the Ultra-HD disc, backed up by some new additions:

  • Audio Commentary: director Martin Brest treats this like a nice reflective piece, going into great detail on the production itself, relationships and rapport with the cast, and other background info
  • Isolated Score Track:
  • Deleted Scenes: A new addition, with two (unfinished) scenes available, each a few minutes in length
  • Behind the Scenes: 1984 Interviews: The other new material put together for this release are short interviews (a few seconds to a few minutes in length) touching on the film’s pace, portrayal of cops, improvisation, and the pairing of Taggart and Rosewood
  • Beverly Hills Cop — The Phenomenon Begins: Just shy of 30 minutes, this feature is a nice addition to break down the film’s conception, the selection and influence of Eddie Murphy, and the reception and enduring cult status the film achieved since release
  • A Glimpse Into the Casting Process: Brings in casting director Margery Simkin who shares stories about the switching of Sylvester Stallone for Eddie Murphy as the lead, and choosing actors for the other key roles
  • The Music of Beverly Hills Cop: after securing a Grammy for it’s score, it’s nice to see this aspect of the film get some attention in a short featurette
  • Location Map: Short snippets about key locations used in the shooting of the film
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • BHC Mixtape ’84: A mixup of songs used in the film set to various sequences
  • Digital download code:


The very rich and extremely greedy Duke Brothers (Don Ameche and Ralph Bellamy) wager over whether “born-loser” Billy Ray Valentine (Eddie Murphy) could become as successful as the priggish Louis Winthorpe III (Dan Akroyd) if circumstances were reversed. Alongside the street-smarts of Ophelia (Jamie Lee Curtis), Winthorpe and Valentine are a trio ready for a riotous revenge that culminates on the commodities trading floor in New York City.

Like the other two above, this release of Trading Places stems from a newly remastered 4K film transfer supervised by director John Landis, unlike the others they decided to put it out on a Blu-ray instead of Ultra-HD. Despite that, compared to the 35th Anniversary Blu-ray from 2018, this is a undeniably superior transfer. More detailed, textures more readily apparent, colors are healthy, and blacks are deep. A more handsome and clearer presentation compared to the muddier imagers of the previous Blu-ray. It’s not 4K, but it’s the next best thing. A great release and refresh of one of my favorite seasonal comedies.

Extra Features:

The release brings back what came on the previous Blu, while adding two notable new featurettes:

  • NEW Filmmaker Focus — Interview with John Landis: Disappointingly short, but Landis packs in plenty of info
  • NEW Isolated Score Track: a new addition from the previous release
  • Insider Trading: The Making of Trading Places: Around 20 minutes of interviews and behinds the scenes materials
  • Trading Stories: A compilation of a number of promotional interviews, from around the film’s original release.
  • The Deleted Scene: given commentary by executive producer George Folsey Jr.
  • Dressing The Part: a short featurette on costume design and reflecting the status of the characters
  • The Trade in Trading Places:
  • Theatrical Trailer:
  • Digital download code:


Eddie Murphy is “the Chosen One,” a social worker on a madcap mission to find “the Golden Child,” a young boy possessing mystical powers. Joined by Kee Nang (Charlotte Lewis), they’ll battle the countless henchmen of Sardo Numspa (Charles Dance), the mysterious and evil cult leader holding the boy captive. It’s a dangerous quest, complete with obstacle courses and a mythical amulet, sharply combining Murphy’s wit with eye-popping special effects for an unforgettable adventure.

Like Trading Places, The Golden Child has undergone a 4K scan and transfer, but ended up on a Blu-ray, seemingly for the first time even on this format. Picture quality is solid, colors pop, and the transfer is free of damage, with a natural grain. The impressive level of depth and detail allow for a better appreciation of the elaborate production design, and the creativity and creations on show than in any previous version I’ve seen. Again there is a little softness in parts, and some of the special effects (and their integration) do show more of their age with the Ultra-HD clarity. But I’m pretty sure it’s the best possible way to view The Golden Child right now.

Extra Features:

Of the four releases, The Golden Child is the least supported in terms of extras. As one of the more adventurous films in Murphy’s catalogue, it’s a shame more insight and context isn’t given for it’s place in his career.

  • The Making of The Golden Child: A mashup (in terms of SD and HD too) of interviews and making of material.
  • Theatrical Trailer:
  • Digital download code:

Coming To America, Beverly Hills Cop, Trading Places and The Golden Child are available December 1st

About Paramount Presents

This collectible line spans celebrated classics to film-lover favorites, each from the studio’s renowned library. Every Paramount Presents release features never-before-seen bonus content and exclusive collectible packaging. Additional titles available in the Paramount Presents collection on Blu-ray include: Fatal Attraction, King Creole, To Catch a Thief, Flashdance, Days of Thunder, Pretty In Pink, Airplane!, Ghost, Roman Holiday, and The Haunting.

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