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  Directed by
    None Listed
  Starring
  Specs
  • Widescreen 1.85:1
  • 16:9 Enhanced
  • Dual Layer (RSDL )
  Languages
  • English: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • German: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  Subtitles
    German, Dutch, English - Hearing Impaired, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish
  Extras
  • Deleted scenes
  • 2 Theatrical trailer
  • 1 Music video - Eels Music Video
  • Awards/Nominations

Road Trip

Dreamworks/Universal . R4 . COLOR . 94 mins . MA15+ . PAL

  Feature
Contract

Hot on the heels of the successful American Pie came Road Trip, demonstrating that Hollywood had not forgotten the frat-boy comedy films of the 1980s. The premise is of course quite simple, letting the fun and laughter roll from the characters and the situations they get themselves into.

Sticking with the tried and true stereotypes for this genre, we have the jock or party animal, E.L. (Sean William Scott), the brains behind the outfit, Rubin (Paulo Costanzo), the social outcast, Kyle (DJ Qualls), and the everyday guy, and hero of the film, Josh (Breckin Meyer). And of course, what frat group could exist without the member who has been there forever - Barry (Tom Green).

Josh and Tiffany (Rachel Blanchard) have been together since they were five years old - until they went to seperate colleges: Josh to Ithaca University in New York State, and Tiffany to the University of Austin, in Texas.

Now, Josh has a small problem - he's just mailed a video tape to Tiffany, a video tape that shows him cheating on her with local Ithaca student, Beth (Amy Smart). Lucky for Josh that Tiffany won't get the mail until Monday, giving him and his crack rescue team (E.L., Rubin and Kyle) three days to reach Austin and intercept the explicit package.

Can they make the 1800 miles in only three days?

"It's supposed to be a challenge - that's why they call it a short cut. If it was easy, it would just be the way."

  Video
Contract

A remarkably good transfer of a nice clean print - just what you should expect from a film just on 12 months old. Unfortunately, it seems the digital razor has been at work, with the hint of edge-ehancement giving extra sharp lines to the cast in the foreground.

Other than that relatively minor flaw, the picture looks good. There's plenty of colour as the gang journey down the road to Texas, all of which is vibrant and rich, without affecting the depth of the odd appearance of black.

One thing I want to take the time to mention is the layer change - it's good! Switching layers after a scene ends with a fade to black is a very good thing - sure the pause may be a little longer than you'd expect from a scene change, but at least the action is not being interrupted. Kudos to the person responsible for this!

  Audio
Contract

Prepare to give your sub-woofer a work at as it thumps along to the Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack of mostly late 90s rock. The surround music really enhances the atmosphere of the party scenes, and driving montages, drawing you in to the upbeat nature of the film. When dialogue starts up, the music cuts down so that we can here every word clearly.

  Extras
Contract

A smattering of extras here, identical to the US version of the disc:

  • Unr8d edition: we're given the unrated version of the film - meaning slightly more nudity. Now, it's been over six months since I saw this film during its Australian theatrical release, but it doesn't seem that different to me...
  • Deleted Scenes: 7 scenes deleted from the film, including extra university tour info spots with Tom Green, an additional dream sequence, and more events on the road. While you may get a laugh or two from the reel, which is mostly cleaned up production footage, including crew, you will understand why they were deleted.
  • Music Video: Mr E's Beautiful Blues, as performed by the Eels, using clips from the movie, lifted directly or including the members of the band. This video clip is an edit of the full song, removing the "God" from "Goddamn" - no doubt done for the sensitive American audience.
  • Making of: 5 minutes of behind the scenes footage, hosted by Tom Green, intercut with scenes from the trailer. Why they call this a "Making of" I'll never know. Worth watching once to see some of the off camera shenanigans of the cast.
  • 2 Theatrical Trailers: The first seems to be presented in widescreen, but without displaying letterbox bars on my non-16x9 television. Watching it on my PC proves this to be the case - an odd oversight it seems, as the second trailer is in forced letterbox in 4:3 mode.

One thing that bugs me about this disc, and several others as well, is the main menu auto-playing the film after a disc-defined period of time. Am I the only one who likes to put a disc into the player, and then wander away to get everything in order before I sit to watch the film? Can we have this feature switched off? When I want to start the film, I'll hit the button - you don't need to do it for me.

  Overall  
Contract

It's good to see the types of films I grew up watching starting to make a return to Hollywood. Road Trip is an entertaining journey, with many laughs along the way, and enough re-watch-ability to make purchasing the DVD worthwhile.

If only it had an audio commentary with the cast...


  • LINK: http://www.dvd.net.au/review.cgi?review_id=442
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      And I quote...
    "Frat-boy comedies make a comeback, with this cross-country journey of discovery."
    - Andrew MacLennan
      Review Equipment
    • DVD Player:
          Pioneer DV-515
    • TV:
          Philips 29PT6361
    • Receiver:
          Denon AVR-2700
    • Speakers:
          Aaron ATS-5
    • Centre Speaker:
          Aaron CC-240
    • Surrounds:
          Aaron SS-120
    • Subwoofer:
          Aaron SUB-240
    • Audio Cables:
          Standard Optical
    • Video Cables:
          Standard Component RCA
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