Old School

Old School (2003)
Dreamworks Home Entertainment
Cast: Will Ferrell, Luke Wilson, Vince Vaughn
Extras: Commentary Track, Bloopers, Deleted Scenes, Spoof, Features

"Old School" was one of Will Ferrell's early movies after leaving Saturday Night and back then already, he was shoehorning himself into the kind of excessive character that we've seen since over and over again. When the film first arrived on DVD, I did not expect anything from 'Old School' but another idiotic teenage gross-out comedy that revolves around nothing but hormone-driven teenies salivating over the sex they wish they'd have. Boy, was I wrong…

'Old School' actually turns out to have more in common with the classic 'Animal House' than any of these teenage films. While sex IS a theme in 'Old School,' it fortunately doesn't dominate the movie. As a matter of fact, comedy dominates this film. It is the story of three guys in their mid-thirties who just want to break out of their ordinary lives to have the kind of fun they used to have. So, they set up a fraternity and with their rampant parties they quickly turn into the hottest spot on campus. But the local Dean wants to get rid of these lunatics and tries to find ways, to solve this little annoying problem. The rest of it you will have to see for yourself.

Presented in a 1080p high definition transfer that restores the movie's original widescreen format, the presentation if "Old School" is every bit as good as you would expect. There is no gain evident and no noise or no defects in the print that would distract from the film in anyway. Colors are bold and vibrant throughout, giving the film a very rich look that remains very natural in look, however. Solid blacks and deep shadows give the image solid depth and make sure every bit of detail is properly rendered. With incredible detail and sharp edges, it is a transfer that is sure to please.

The disc dishes out a Dolby Digital 5.1 TrueHD audio track that reproduces the original master audio track without loss. As a result you get here an experience that is powerful and dynamic, making very aggressive use of the surround channels for a comedy. It has a wide frequency response and really brings the film to life as if you were in a movie theater.

The Blu-Ray version pretty much duplicates the contents of the previous DVD release, not only by delivering the unrated version of the movie, but also by includeing all the extras. It contains a commentary track featuring various cast and crew members, filled with valuable insight and anecdotes about the making of the film and the people involved.
Eight deleted scenes are included also, making for a few additional minutes of laughter, although one of Will Ferrell's 'Inside The Actor's Studio' skits that is also included on the disc, will have you rolling with laughter, no doubt. The silly features are continued with a selection of bloopers and outtakes, as well as the feature "Old School Orientation" and the film's trailer in high deifnition.

"Old School" is a comedy that is raunchy but still has enough substance to keep audiences that are beyond their teens interested and laughing.It may not be very imaginative or innovative, and sometimes feels like an excessive SNL skit, but ultimately it is funny and entertaining, and what more could you ask for?