Epic Movie (Unrated Edition)
The tough argument to make is that Epic Movie is the worst movie ever made because it never once tries to justify its own cinematic existence. It’s merely content with endless pop-culture references and fart jokes. In fact, it might be the first DVD release of a movie that offers a “special” soundtrack to incorporates more bodily noises. Obviously, these producers are sick individuals who still spend most of their time hanging out in middle school bathrooms. You can call it demographic research, but given Epic Movie’s unhealthy interest in farts and tits suggests that these guys are spending enough time in the boy’s rest room to deem loitering creepy and illegal.
From Nacho Libre and The Chronicles of Narnia to 'MTV Cribs' and 'Treasure Hunters', Epic Movie is like listening to middle school students heckling the latest theatrical releases, but it’s twice as annoying because shush the TV screen isn’t as effective as scolding youngsters. The movie offers nothing in the way of laughs, plot or themes, and the absence of substance, other than references to other movies and the suspense of which character will fart next, evokes feelings of dread; somewhere in the depths of hell there has to be an audience for Epic Movie.
“What do we love so much about epic movies? Why do we live vicariously through them? Why do they excite us so much?” asks Fred Willard, who plays Aslo, in an Epic Movie featurette for the Fox Movie Channel. Oddly enough, these are valid questions that could indeed be answered with a hilarious satirical spin. Sadly, Epic Movie obviously has no interest in exploring these genre questions. It’s more concerned with scantily clad women and the ways to trick Kal Penn into eating shit.
“The key to making a spoof movie that people respond to is being incredibly up to date on everything pop-cultural,” explains producer Paul Schiff. If Epic Movie succeeds at anything, it’s covering every media pop culture icon in the past five years, coherent plot be damned. But it doesn’t inject any observational originality into its references; Epic Movie merely regurgitates what we’ve already seen at a rapid, yet mind-numbing pace.
What directors Aaron Seltzer and Jason Friedberg have added into the film, is a painful, original music video attempting to “spoof” Pirates of the Caribbean. “I don’t know why we always like music in movies. Maybe because it feels like something different, something fun and upbeat,” says Seltzer. “There’s also a hole in the market because Weird Al, you haven’t seen him in a while and we just want to fill that void,” Friedberg added. Like the movie itself, the stupidity of the schlock-makers speaks for itself. “I can’t believe they pay us for this,” said the captain Jack spoofer. Quite frankly, neither can the rest of us.
Epic Movie is given the “unrated” DVD treatment for even more nudity and cursing, which lowers the movie’s bar even more. Even at a modest run time of 93 minutes, the movie still feels endless. The movie is presented in an anamorphic 1.85 : 1 widescreen transfer that is just like every other DVD transfer in the latest generation. It’s free of debris and has solid blacks, whites and colors. The Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack also gets the job done. The soundtrack is full bodied, while the dialogue remains crisp.
If you’re a masochist, the DVD is stuffed to the brim with mind-melting bonus material. First, there are three in-movie features. The audio commentary with writers/directors Seltzer and Friedberg is just as, if not more than, stupid than the film itself. Even two minutes into the commentary, the two are endlessly confusing. However, the movie does make more sense after listening to the two writers/directors, as they are obviously on drugs. The second in-movie feature, “Breaking Wind: An Epic Journey into the Sounds of an Epic Movie,” is by far the most idiotic and insulting DVD feature I’ve ever come across. It’s a soundtrack that adds farting and burping sounds into a free audio moment in the movie. The third in-movie feature, “How Gratuitous,” allows the view to access additional nearly-pornographic behind-the-scenes footage when watching the movie.
If you haven’t committed suicide by that point, there are seven featurettes. These featurettes mostly focus on the sexual preferences of the cast, including “Everyone Loves Beaver: Epic Hook-Ups,” “Epic Porn – What Would Your Porno Movie Be Called,” “What Makes Aslo So Irresistible,” and “Hot or Not: Character Turn On’s and Turn Off’s.” The other three featurettes focus on the production – “Making the Video: Lazy Pirate Day,” “Fox Movie Channel Presents: Making a Spoof” and “Fox Movie Channel Presents: in Character with Fred Willard.” The “Making the Video” is a look at the Pirates of the Caribbean music video shoot. It mostly consists of the producers talking about how great spoof movies are. The other two featurettes are 10 minutes of Fred Willard talking gibberish.
Still not enough? Even after suicide your soul longs for more debauchery? Well step right up to the Outtakes, Alternative Ending, “Die Libre: the winning short from the Epic Movie viral video contest” and a Reno 911!: Miami Trailer. What do you think the outtakes and alternative ending are like? That’s right, a complete waste of time. And the Reno 911 trailer reminds you that you could be watching a better movie.
Normally, a DVD this stacked would get a four or five star rating. Given that these features only capitulate the endless stupidity of American audiences, it gets one star (because that’s the lowest rating we have the power to bestow).
Reviewed By: Jason Morgan