Disaster Movie: Cataclysmic Edition Unrated [Blu-ray]
Blu-ray A - America - Lions Gate Home Entertainment
Review written by and copyright: Jeremiah Chin (8th February 2009).
The Film

Right now the United States economy is deep in a recession that so far shows no signs of stopping. Billions of dollars are being thrown towards banks and auto companies to be used to try and stimulate their industries, though who knows if it will be enough money to fund the billions of poorly spent dollars that have seemed to disappear into thin air. Though Barack Obama’s presidency signals a potential change in the economy who knows if the hole that the previous administration dug will potentially be able to recover from the previous emphasis on a hyper-capitalist, money for the rich at all costs mentality that has left the economy the way it is right now. The problem itself is harder to see right now, both in origins and the lengths of it’s effects, but I can easily say that one of the biggest misuses of money during Bush’s second term (private, public, or secret Nazi gold) was giving Jason Friedberg, Aaron Seltzer, and Peter Safran the $20 million necessary to create “Disaster Movie” (2008). $20 million! Based on the current poverty level, this film could have provided an annual income for over 400 people, paying them the bare minimum for poverty (well under a living wage, especially for families). Now compared to some films like “The Dark Knight” (2008) $20 million seems fairly insignificant, but this movie was so terribly, horribly bad, all I can think about is the downfall of society. I guess I could make some kind of disaster pun here, but that’s a cheap and easy way out of talking about potentially the worst thing I have ever seen.

Will (Matt Lanter) is a main character. He appears in a reference to “10,000 B.C.” (2008) in a dream sequence where he encounters 2 pop culture figures that had some kind of significance in 2008, and the next day has a birthday party, the same day the world is supposed to end. A large number of pop cultural figures from the year 2008 appear at the party, all are parodies. The day before he broke up with his girlfriend who went to her job and is now trapped there while meteors begin to strike the city. Will leaves the party with his friend Calvin (Gary “G-Thang” Johnson) to go rescue her, where they encounter another group of pop cultural parodies all of whom interact with oneanother in parody-esque ways.

Basically the film is a bullet-point list of all the trailers for movies that came out in 2008 (and a few from earlier), which all get strung together with actors that are much cheaper. Strangely enough including Ike Barinholtz who appears in half the movie as different characters each time, each one less funny than the next. There are no jokes in this movie, I couldn’t muster a smile during the entire film and it was an overall painful experience. All attempts at comedy fall flat, all the acting is terrible, all of the directing is bad and frankly the film is an insult to the concept of parody. Rather than trying to interweave references and new jokes into some kind of blend that really makes things funny and interesting, the Friedberg and Seltzer films are basically a collection of rejected sketches that couldn’t make the cut in a public access sketch comedy marathon starring a group of “MADtv” (1995-2009) rejects.

On every level the movie is unfunny, uninteresting and frankly insulting to the average movie watcher’s intelligence. I find it somewhat reassuring that the film barely made it’s money back, but still the $35 million it made is a waste of money on a film that doesn’t deserve anything at all. Hopefully it will send a message in the decreasing success of these films as the previous few made more than triple their money back. Please do not buy, rent or even touch this film. I don’t care if you’re some 14-year-old adolescent heterosexual boy trying to see some degree of nudity in an ‘unrated’ cut with Carmen Electra, there’s nothing there for you. Please stay away.

Video

The film is presented in the original 1.78:1 widescreen in HD 1080p 24/fps using the AVC MPEG-4 compression. Honestly it’s hard to really go down on the image as Blu-ray has a tendancy to make even the worst images look really good, there are some odd shots that look overly-crisp revealing how cheaply made some of the sets are, but otherwise the transfer is good and the colors come through nicely, though the lighting of the film itself just doesn’t really do anything.

Audio

Presented in an English DTS-HD Lossless Master Audio 7.1 track, the audio is nice and clear like the video but there’s nothing worth listening to. The sound all comes through clearly and there’s no dropouts in sound and from a technical perspective the sound is transferred well to the blu-ray, but there’s no point in having a crisp and clear audio track with nothing worth listening to.
There are optional English and Spanish Subtitles.

Extras

The single disc comes equipped with a fair group of special features including a picture-in-picture commentary, 5 featurettes, 2 sing-along tracks and a MoLog BD-live feature.

First up is the “Bonusview" Picture-in Picture commentary with cast and crew, which is essentially a commentary with Jason Friedberg, Aaron Seltzer, a href=http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1782667/>Matt Lanter, Vanessa Minnillo and Gary “G-Thang” Johnson. Their dialogue is slightly more natural than the film’s, but it still covers your basic commentary points with some chatter in-between. They do a surprisingly good job of putting together a fairly fluid commentary, though the pauses are accentuated with the picture-in-picture feature that disappears when they stop talking about something for a little bit. Unfortunately it’s about as interesting as the film is, especially since I stop caring about any insights, jokes, or antics they have to talk about when the movie was so terrible.

The first featurette is “Straight from the Ladies” which runs for 3 minutes and 59 seconds. This featurette focuses on the major female actresses, especially Nicole Parker and Crista Flanagan. Unfortunately the two of them mostly stay in character for the entire featurette, where they talk about the movie and their cast mates; there are also a few of behind-the-scenes shots and film footage thrown in.

“G-Thang’s Tour” runs for 10 minutes and 18 seconds. In this featurette, Gary “G-Thang” Johnson takes the camera on a tour around the set, he tells jokes, they show off the trailers, the sound studio, basically everything that sits around a production. He talks to the other actors as he goes around the tour, tries to make more jokes, and generally just goes around the back of the set.

“This Is How We Do It” runs for 9 minutes and 5 seconds. This featurette is more of the regular making-of, talking in interviews with each of the actors about each other and making the movie. Nothing particularly interesting in the featurette, though there’s an odd pop-up commentary track that tries to be funny or informative, but generally fails at both.

“Girl Fight” runs for 1 minute and 41 seconds. This brief featurette covers the short wrestling scene between Carmen Electra and Kim Kardashian. They talk about how playful it is, they compliment each other’s acting and looks, though most of the couple minutes is just behind-the-scenes shots of the shooting of the scene.

“Sitting Down with a Stand-Up” featurette which runs for 7 minutes and 48 seconds, where Gary “G-Thang” Johnson does more behind-the-scenes talking to the camera, excep this one I guess is supposed to focus more on him telling jokes rather than talking about the film itself. He tells a lot of topical jokes, like gas is expensive, and talks about his career as a stand-up comedian and moving in to movies.

“Who’s Spoofing Who?” featurette runs for 4 minutes and 21 seconds, here the actors of the film talk about the spoofs either that they’ve been a part of or who has spoofed their own acting career. The two comedians talk about all of the different impressions and spoofs. There are more attempts at on set comedy, but again they fall fairly flat.

“I’m F#%king Matt Damon Sing-along” runs for 3 minutes and 59 seconds, this is essentially a karaoke sing-a-long version of the song that ends the film, another example of how the film just throws together anything that was remotely popular and turns it into something unfunny and disinteresting.

“High School Musical Sing-along” runs for 4 minutes and 9 seconds, similar to the above sing-a-long this is a version of the “High School Musical” segment of the film, the entire song with the lyrics at the bottom.

Next is the “Molog” BD-Live feature which requires internet access and a profile 2.0 capable player to access, which supposedly lets you add text or images to the film to set it up like a movie blog online.

The bonus trailers on the disc are:

- “My Bloody Valentine 3D” runs for 1 minute and 40 seconds.
- “The Spirit” runs for” 2 minutes and 28 seconds.
- “War” runs for 38 seconds.
- “Crank” runs for 1 minute and 58 seconds.
- “Lord of War” runs for 2 minutes and 13 seconds.
- “The Punisher” runs for 2 minutes and 32 seconds.

Overall

The Film: F Video: B Audio: B Extras: F Overall: F

 


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