The DVD, put out by Genius Products, has no extra features, as in all Allen DVD releases. The film is shown in a 1.85:1 aspect ratio.
Some critics have praised the use of a voiceover narrator in the film, while others, like James Berardinelli, have condemned it. The truth is that it’s neither here nor there. Yes, there are moments when it is needlessly recapitulative, but others where it makes for handy elisions of superfluous moments. The voice of Welch, though, is perhaps too much like a young Woody Allen’s, and given that Hall’s Vicky is clearly the designated neurotic Woody character, this vocal affinity of Welch’s subliminally biases the viewer toward feeling a certain way toward Vicky that otherwise might not exist, i.e. it makes the screenplay seem more about Vicky because she is seen as the Woody character, pro or con, depending on the viewer’s preconceptions of the real life Allen and his neurotic onscreen characterizations. The film’s strongest point, however, is its anti-climactic ending, wherein all the characters return to where they were. If only the rest of the film were as spare and poetic, then Vicky Cristina Barcelona would have been a film that could be argued for greatness.
As for the actors, the best performance is likely given by Bardem, although he also had the least complicated part — the slimeball user (best described by Vicky as a "charmingly candid wife-beater"). Hall and Messina actually have good chemistry together, which makes a viewer wonder why Vicky would give a damn about the slimy Juan, except for the obvious — that Allen was pandering to the Lowest Common Denominator Hollywood ideal of romantic love (being in love) somehow being better than true love (being loved). Scarlett Johansson is again misused by Allen. Her best role was in Allen’s light comedy, Scoop, where she proved to be quite an adept comedienne, surpassed in the Allen pantheon of female comic talents only by Diane Keaton. But where this idea arose of her as a sex symbol is mystifying. She’s simply a rather average looking young woman, far more suited to the girl next door roles that would have once gone to Donna Reed or Doris Day than the roles she gets, which would have once gone to Marilyn Monroe or Jayne Mansfield. It’s truly mystifying, as Johansson simply lacks the sexual ‘It’ factor.
But, worst of all is Penelope Cruz. Putting aside the character’s stereotypes, I have seen her in a handful of films and a) she cannot act (despite claims that she is far better in Spanish language films than English ones, for over 50% of her role here is in Spanish), and b) like Johansson, she is almost always cast as a sex bomb, despite the fact that she’s just an average looking woman and, in this film, looks scrawny, if not outright anorexic. Despite, at times looking like a younger, prettier Mackenzie Phillips, the best looking female in the film, by far, is Rebecca Hall, the least known of the trio. She also is, easily, the best actress.