Good Luck Chuck
Lions Gate Home Entertainment
Cast: Dane Cook, Jessica Alba, Dan Fogler
Extras: Commentary Track, Featurettes, Deleted Scenes, Extended Scenes, Alternate Scenes, Music Montages, Bookmarks
"Good Luck Chuck" is Mark Helfrich's first major motion picture. His previous credits include mainly editing. It's the type of raunchy sex comedies that we see more and more of these days, it seems out to offend almost everyone.
The basic story starts in the seventies, when Chuck was just a twelve year old (Connor Price) he is playing spin the bottle and gets put in the closet with a young girl (Sasha Pieterse) who insists she has a crush on him. I didn't know there even were goth girls in the seventies but that's what she appears to be. Things go terribly wrong when he doesn't know how to react to her aggressive moves and she ends up putting some sort of loneliness curse on him that lasts many years into the future.
Years later Charlie (Dane Cook) is a successful but unhappy dentist who seems destined to spend his life alone. His best friend Stu (Dan Fogler from "Revenge Of The Nerds") is a plastic surgeon and womanizer who always offers the worst advice and appears to be on a permanent cocaine binge. While attending the wedding of one of his ex girlfriends, the bride to be points out Charlie and he and everyone come to the realization that every girl he has had a one night stand with has ended up in a happy relationship soon after, so his curse reveals itself to actually be a charm, at least it seems that way at first. Even after taking advantage of his new celebrity status, and after a very graphic montage of some of his sexual exploits, he still just wants to settle down with a nice girl he can be happy with.
Then he meets an aquatic bird specialist (no I couldn't make this up) named Cam (Jessica Alba) and he immediately falls for her. The main problem with her, other than what appears to be an unhealthy obsession with penguins, is she is extremely clumsy and is always tripping over things and falling. When she chips her tooth on the ice after being knocked down violently by a penguin, she ends up using him as her dentist and agrees to go on a date with him. But will the curse hold him back from true love, or will Cam get tired of all the attention he gets from women who are out to find true love by having sex with him.
This type of gross out comedy can be done well ("Something About Mary" immediately comes to mind, along with "Knocked Up"), but in this case they just don't know when to stop. That isn't to say I didn't find myself laughing out loud several times because of some of the most absurd situations Dane Cook finds himself in, not to mention the insane character of Stu, who has a few funny moments. In the end, how can I possibly find anything valuable here? This film takes sleazy to a whole new level and the scenes of violence due to Alba's clumsiness get old quick, I mean who really wants to watch her hurt herself over and over again?
As for the transfer itself, it is really top of the line, as I thought it would be. Very brightly colored and brightly lit, the film is very detailed and you often notice every tiny detail in the objects in the background, not to mention every pore in some of the actor's faces and every freckle on some of the actresses. The black levels also appear nicely balanced, this is about as good as it gets. I didn't notice any instances of edge enhancement either and the whole film simply looked very natural and colorful, if you can stomach this type of gross out raunchy humor, then you will definitely be well pleased with the video, it looks wonderful. Also it fills the entire screen at 1.85:1, which is very nice. Despite the sometimes stupid subject matter, this movie looks great in high definition.
They didn't hold back in the audio department either, in fact this disc actually has a 7.1 PCM Audio that really rises above what you may expect, but I'm not complaining. The sound field is very wide, and the surrounds can be very aggressive, believe it or not. The music comes through very clear, we also never notice any distractions from the dialogue which shines through crystal clear. Also on board is a 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround EX track, so everyone should be pleased even if they can't access the great sounding PCM track.
Another good thing about this technically superb Blu-ray are the special features, which are about as mindless and annoying as the film itself, are all presented in crystal clear 1080p High Definition, and that is really a plus. You may not want to see what you are watching, but it looks great. With that said, the features are predictably standard fair, although the sexual content and graphic language actually shine through equally, which is a plus or a minus depending on who you are. All of this, along with a highly energetic commentary featuring Dane Cook, Director Mark Helfrich, Producer Mike Karz and writer Josh Stolberg.
The main portion is advertised "7 Chucked Up Featurettes". You can access them all at once, and combined they run a total of 29 minutes and thirty three seconds, so it really isn't that unbearable. "Frank The Penguin Actor" simply has a camera man following a beautiful penguin around making stupid comments as a fake voice is heard in the background. I felt sorry for the penguin. "Polymastia" is a disturbing feature all about how they filmed the three breast segment, it made me wonder how much some people get paid to actually appear in such segments of a film. They hopefully were compensated for looking so pathetic and grotesque. "Kama Sutra" is a very graphic exploration of how the sex montage was based on that old psychedelic poster from the seventies with all of the sex positions. Once again, I was baffled at how low some people will seemingly stoop to get in a movie, because truly they look so stupid, and none of it is sexy, it is simply gross. "All About The Penguins" is more evidence that the only living creatures that retain any dignity throughout this mess of a film are the wonderful penguins. I felt sorry for them because all they seem to get paid are fish to eat, it doesn't seem fair. "Eleanor Skepple" is another example of someone they sought out to humiliate themselves in front of the camera, they searched far and wide to find an actress that weighed almost five hundred pounds, and no she isn't from LA, they found her in Texas. I wonder how much she got paid. "Good Luck Chuckles" it's just Dane Cook and some fellow cast members and crew acting silly and singing songs and having fun around the set. "Real Life Chuck" is a short feature about the person this film is supposedly based on, or at least the unlucky guy who they got the idea from.
We also have a somewhat funny segment called "Ad-Libs" which features Dane Cook doing just that during several scenes. Since he recently broke the Laugh Factory record for longest stand up performance, you can see how obnoxious he can be. If you like Dane Cook, you will like this feature, it runs about 8 minutes 28 seconds.
Probably one of the more interesting features I've seen recently is called "High Definition Sex Matrix" and includes sixteen different windows where you can watch Dane Cook with the sixteen different women, I couldn't figure out if the sex was real or not, it certainly looked real. Disturbing, but fascinating to say the least.
We also have "Deleted Scenes", "Extended Scenes" and "Alternate Scenes" that are really more of the same ad lib type Dane Cook advertisements. None of them add to the film, in fact the film could have more deleted scenes, if you ask me. We even have a Gag Reel that clocks in at more than nine minutes. We are in Dane Cook land here. If you are a fan, you simply want this film, if not, this is overkill.
We have a Music montage which features The Flaming Lips and The Honorary Title and they sound great actually. It plays their music and we see scenes from the film or you can also sift through a photo gallery. This Blu ray also features Personalized Bookmarks and something called Blue-Line Slider which enables you to "jump to any scene instantly".
So that rounds out a very well put together Blu-ray that is simply top of the line technically and has tons of features all in high definition. Although I didn't like the film, they really went all the way with this disc, and if you are a fan, it is simply a must have. For the rest of us though, perhaps we would like to see more films get this type of deluxe treatment from Lions Gate.