Fox // 2002 // 100 Minutes // Rated R
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // December 18th, 2008
Broken Lizard's breakout comedy receives a solid Blu-ray release. Grab your maple syrup and start chugging.
Somewhere on the border of Vermont and Canada is a state trooper station housing the biggest idiot cops the world has ever seen. Led by Captain O'Hagan (Brian Cox, The Bourne Supremacy), these troopers pass away the time playing pranks on hapless speeding victims, covering each other in shaving cream, testing out ammo bullet-proof underwear and, most importantly, desperately trying to avoid unemployment.
Their station is targeted for closure and with the overbearing local cops doing everything they can to ensure that happens, it will take a record-breaking pot bust, the revelation of a conspiracy and a bear-humping incident to prevent the Super Troopers from knocking back syrup shots in the unemployment line.
I've seen three Broken Lizard movies -- Puddle Cruiser, Club Dread and this -- and Super Troopers is by far the best. In fact, I didn't really like anything else the troupe has done aside from this movie, so I guess it's fair to say I'm not a committed Broken Lizard fan. But I'm down with the adventures of O'Hagan and his band of delinquents.
A well above-average comedy, Super Troopers sports an impressive hit-to-miss joke ratio. There's a lot of stupid stuff, sure, and a fair amount of the gags flatline, but the laugh-out-loud moments are there. The Afghanistanimation, the meow game, the entire opening sequence, Jay Chandrasekhar's mistaken ethnicity, anything with Farva -- all good stuff. The Broken Lizard guys are all charismatic in their roles, and surprisingly fearless, willing to endure all manner of public humiliation to get a laugh. I can respect that.
But then again, you probably know that already, so I'll cut short this rehashed reaction. The movie's funny. You'll laugh.
Onto the Blu-ray and it's a good one. Instead of just vomiting up a double-dip with boosted visual and audio fidelity and no additional extras, Fox has put together a high-def release that makes good use of the format. First, the tech specs. The 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer represents a definite upgrade in picture quality. Low-budget or no, the film looks terrific. This is a bright movie, shot primarily in the daylight and the enhanced resolution brings out the Vermont-ish colors with verve. The detailing is visibly improved in high definition, which actually makes those mustache close-ups a smidge nauseating. Audio: a clean 5.1 DTS HD Master track that kicks out some activity in the busier scenes.
The extras are the main attraction for this release. Two amusing commentary tracks with the Broken Lizard guys, a pair of standard-def making-of featurettes and a batch of deleted scenes and outtakes with optional commentary are joined by two Blu-ray extras: a unique picture-in-picture commentary and a drinking game.
This is one of the cooler picture-in-picture commentaries I've seen. Throughout the feature, the Broken Lizard troupe comments on the on-screen action and are periodically joined by other cast members. They're cut-out and superimposed on the screen, sitting on a couch and once in a while, one of the guys will get up and run solo.
Stupor Troopers Drinking Game
After about a hundred disclaimers about how you shouldn't abuse alcohol or haze people, the game starts with a snarky introduction from Broken Lizard. Once you pick teams, the movie starts and, along with trigger words like "meow and "Farva," trivia questions and mini-games will also prompt you to take a drink. Another fun addition.
A worthy HD upgrade and a pair of innovative Blu-specific extras make this edition of Super Troopers stand out in a line-up.
Not Guilty chicken@#$%.
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Scales of Justice
* 1.85:1 Non-Anamorphic (1080p Widescreen)
* DTS HD 5.1 Master Audio (English)
* Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (French)
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround (Spanish)
Running Time: 100 Minutes
Release Year: 2002
MPAA Rating: Rated R
* Deleted Scenes
* Drinking Game