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(Widescreen Edition)

WILD HOGS ($30) is a fun little road trip/buddy comedy about four weekend bikers, each suffering the symptoms of their own version of the mid-life crisis, who decide to saddle up and ride off on a cross-country adventure. The movie has plenty of funny moments, featuring lots of slapstick bits, as well as some crude humor, but the yucks arenít as character driven as they could be. Tim Allen, John Travolta, Martin Lawrence and William H. Macy combine their rich comedic talents and bring maximum effectiveness to what sometimes amounts to formulaic material. The basic premise of WILD HOGS finds our for heroes deciding step away from their daily routines, by hopping on their motorcycles and ride the open road to the west coast. Of course, the journey isnít free from complications, when our weekend bikers run afoul of an actual biker gang. In the wake of the destruction of said biker gangís bar, our heroes are forced to take a stand against some nasty hombres- lead by Ray Liotta, at his semi-psycho best. The cast of WILD HOGS also features Marisa Tomei, Kevin Durand, M.C. Gainey, Jill Hennessy, Dominic Janes, Tichina Arnold, Stephen Tobolowsky, Jason Sklar, Randy Sklar and Peter Fonda.

Touchstone Home Entertainment has made WILD HOGS available on DVD in a 2.35:1 widescreen presentation that has been enhanced for playback on 16:9 displays. This is a super looking transfer, which delivers a sharp and nicely detailed picture. Colors are generally nicely saturated and the flesh tones come across in a very appealing manner. Blacks are pure and the whites appear stable. Both the levels of contrast and shadow detail are top of the line. The film elements used for the transfer are virtually pristine and there is very little apparent grain during the presentation. Digital compression artifacts are always nicely camouflaged.

WILD HOGS comes with a nice Dolby Digital 5.1 channel soundtrack. The sound design is a few notches above your standard comedy mix, as the biking scenes have a nice, expansive quality. However, during the talky passages of the film, the forward soundstage remains dominant, with the rear channels supplying little beyond the expected ambient sound and musical fill. Fidelity is pretty strong, with the sounds of the bikes being convincing. The bass channel adds some reinforcement, and an occasional bit of rumble. Dialogue is clear and easy to understand. French and Spanish channel tracks are also provided, along with French and Spanish subtitles.

Full motion video, animation and sound serve to enhance the DVD's interactive menus. Through the menus, one has access to standard scene selection and set up features, as well as a few extra features. Director Walt Becker and writer Brad Copeland are on hand for a running Audio Commentary. Bikes, Brawls And Burning Bars: The Making Of Wild Hogs is a fairly standard sixteen minutes of clips and interviews about the project. How To Get Your Wife To Let You Buy A Motorcycle offers 2 minutes worth of clips. Deleted Scenes and an Alternate Ending are pretty self-explanatory, but donít add up to too much material. Outtakes adds about two minutes of amusing flubs.

WILD HOGS is fun, but a bit less than one would expect from so much talent in one place. The DVD looks great and sounds just fine. Definitely worth a look.



Wild Hogs (Widescreen Edition) (2007)



DVD reviews are Copyright © 2007 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.



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