DVD reviews and previews from curledupdvd.com - curled up with a good dvd
comedy DVD and movie reviews and previews from curledupdvd.com - curled up with a good dvd
DVD reviews, previews and info - comedy
  action movies on DVD
  animation on DVD
  art house and international / foreign language films on DVD
  comedies on DVD
  documentaries on DVD
  dramas on DVD
  children's and family DVDs
  horror and sci-fi on DVD
  suspense on DVD
  television series on DVD
  Blu-ray DVD reviews


Hot Rod - comedy DVD review
HOT ROD rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of America curledupdvd.com rating: 2 1/2 stars
Actors: Andy Samberg, Isla Fisher, Sissy Spacek, Ian McShane, Jorma Taccone, Bill Hader
Director: Akiva Schaffer   Studio: Paramount Home Video
DVD release: 27 November 2007   Runtime: 87 minutes (1 disc)
Format: Color, DVD-Video, Widescreen, NTSC
DVD features: Subtitles (English, Spanish, French), Audio (Dolby Digital 5.1 - English, French, Spanish), Feature Commentary w/ Akiva Schaffer, Andy Samberg, Jorma Taccone, "Ancestors Protect Me: Behind the Scenes of Hot Rod," Deleted and extended scenes w/ optional commentary, Bloopers, Theatrical trailer, 9 additional featurettes, Easter egg (Kevin Karaoke)

What Hot Rod delivers is different from what many of us consider pure comedy, but there is something worth studying in the sophomoric humor, something that reveals the world that has been created via sketch comedy, reality television, and the revelation revolution of YouTube. Furthermore, grounding the prevalent tale, that Rod Kimble (Andy Samberg) must live up to the standards established by his father, who gave Evel Knievel all his best ideas, Hot Rod attempts to widen its audience to include both the hard-edged Gen-Xers and the technologically savvy Gen-Yers. What results is a hodge-podge collection of YouTube-style skits, montaged via the thinnest threads available.

Reflecting the skit comedy genius of Saturday Night Live, Hot Rod will please many of its viewers. One-liners, drastically understated observations, painful crashes and nods to pop culture elicit laughter time and time again. When Rod explains, "I needed to think about last night...after punch-dancing out my rage and suffering an extremely long and very painful fall...I realized what has to be done," anyone who has seen the teen coming-of-age movies that flourished during the Eighties (think Footloose and Flashdance) will smile to herself to remember and to laugh at teen angst.

But those moments hardly constitute seamless comedy. Rather, they reiterate that the viewers are watching sophomoric antics that could just as easily be seen on YouTube or Myspace. And this might be the jewel that Hot Rod delivers. As both celebration and indictment of the hours Americans spend every day as voyeurs to cruel reality, Hot Rod parodies households across the nation. When Kevin states, "It's bouncing around the web like a beach ball at a Nickelback concert," the viewer realizes that she has seen skits like this before - first as Evel Knievel's stunts viewed on a big console television, then as Knievel-like stunts parodied by the likes of Super Dave Osborne and Will Ferrell in skit comedies of the Eighties and Nineties, and now reenacted via shows like Jackass.

To its credit, the DVD has many features to recommend to viewers seeking more for their money. Ten featurettes are included:
  1. Ancestors Protect Me: Behind the Scenes of Hot Rod
  2. Donut King!
  3. Home Video Footage of Orchestra Recording Session
  4. Jestski: The Real Deal
  5. Punch-Dance
  6. Remembering Rod
  7. Training Video #1: Shimmy Exercise
  8. Training Video #2: Wall Exercise
  9. Training Video #3: Dexterity Exercise
  10. Training Video #4: Cone Slalom.
And, of course, the original theatrical trailer is there, too.

And now I am inspired. My brothers and I are going to take a video camera, one of the chunky ones stowed in the deep recesses of the attic, to attempt to recapture the angst and turmoil of our true Eighties teen years. We'll put it on YouTube and call it Hot Rod. Oh, that's taken. Well, then, we'll call it something catchy like Let's Don't and Say We Did.

This movie has a happy audience somewhere, but I cannot count myself as part of that. Watch it over and over again if pain and failure thrill you, if one-liners send you, and if crude humor without intellectual humor as a balance reduces you to puddles of teary laughter. As for me and mine, we will be pleased to pass this one to anybody willing to watch it.
  buy this DVD now or browse millions of other great products at amazon.com
reviewed by Treasure Ingels-Thompson
    action | animation | art house/international | comedy | documentary | drama | family | horror/sci-fi | suspense | television    
    browse DVDs alphabetical by title    
    contact | home