Friday, July 28, 2006

Every Commentary Track tells a Story

One of the best features that has come about because of the DVD is the commentary track, allowing film fans and cinema freaks alike to get information about a film scene by scene by the people involved in its production. Of course, like the movies they are supporting, sometimes they are sublime, sometimes they are ok and sometimes they are commentary tracks of the damned.

And then there are those audio tracks that take a bad movie and catapult it into cultish goodness. I have found one of those rare movie/commentary connections my friends.

You see, about 2 years ago, I bought a package that included two movies, one was the excellent Office Space, and the other was a movie which while it did make me laugh when I first saw it, after subsequent viewings, it became clear that it was just too stupid for me to take seriously, despite a Big Lebowski connection.

That movie was Dude, Where's My Car.

I put off watching it for a long time, and when that sad, slow Saturday came when it was its turn, I thought, why not turn the commentary on... I mean, there has to be a laugh or two in that. That was an understatement.

I think the thing it sort of reminds me of is the beginning and ending of Strange Brew with a lot of Wayne's World thrown in. Ashton Kutcher, Seann William Scott and Danny Leiner were just in a room, having fun talking about this little crappy movie, and between references to shibby, strippers and stunts (basically all the things you would expect from those three people together talking about the project) there were also discussions of the gay subtext of the movie and hollywood standards about marijuana(which was supposed to be a much more prominent feature of the film). There is references in the commentary that someone was out getting some beer, so it is safe to assume that the three parties involved were at least a little inebriated as they talked about the movie, which makes the whole affair that much more entertaining.

If it wasn't for the commentary, this film would be a sad little footnote to the much more cohesive Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle. Let's be clear, I was totally sober when I watched the movie with the audio commentary on, and now, I can't watch it without it. If it came out at the theatre with that audio commentary, I think it could have turned into a good midnight-type movie.

I am sure some of you also have found one of those movies where the commentary track takes an otherwise mediocre or bad movie and turns it into pure gold, and I wonder if there are other flicks I should check out simply because of the commentary track.

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