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MGM Studios DVD presents
Wedding Daze (2006)

“No, she’s gonna hate it more than I hate it, and I really hate it.”
- Ted (Michael Weston)

Review By: Chuck Aliaga  
Published: January 14, 2008

Stars: Isla Fisher, Jason Biggs
Other Stars: Audra Blaser, Margo Martindale, Edward Herrmann, Joe Pantoliano
Director: Michael Ian Black

MPAA Rating: R for (sexual content and some language)
Run Time: 01h:31m:34s
Release Date: January 15, 2008
UPC: 883904100645
Genre: romantic comedy


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
A- A-C-B C-

DVD Review

The old MTV comedy sketch show The State had a short life span, airing from 1993-1995. In the 13 years since its final episode, much of the cast have enjoyed semi-lucrative careers. One of the more successful troupe members is Michael Ian Black, perhaps best known for his participation in VH1’s '80s retrospective shows and in the TV series Ed. In 2006, he turned his unique comedic wit into his feature film directing debut, The Pleasure of Your Company. Finally, after spending two years on the shelf, Black’s film is being released, albeit it direct-to-video, and under a new title, Wedding Daze.

Anderson (Jason Biggs) is madly in love with Vanessa (Audra Blaser), whom he’s about to propose to while wearing a very revealing cupid costume. Things go terribly wrong and Vanessa is no longer around, leaving Anderson in the deepest depression possible. In a diner, he meets Katie (Isla Fisher), a waitress who’s just been proposed to by a boyfriend she doesn’t love, and, out of the blue, Anderson proposes to her himself. When she shockingly says yes, this spontaneous couple embarks on a strange journey during which they learn a thing or two about the true nature of commitment and relationships.

Before the opening credits are complete, we get enough twists and turns for an entire film, let alone a romantic comedy. Once they’re finished we’re able to settle in to a funny, original film that almost turns the conventional romantic comedy on its ear. Unfortunately, it seems like Black is holding back, if ever so slightly. There are many scenes that threaten (in a good way) to take standard rom-com clichés and blow them out of the water, but he seems to put the brakes on right before they have a chance to do so. Still, much of Black’s comedic flair and penchant for pushing boundaries are on display, preventing this from turning into another throwaway crowd-pleasing piece of fluff. Then again, that’s also probably why it never had a chance with a theatrical audience.

Fisher and Biggs are extremely charming, and seem to be having a great time with the screenplay, also penned by Black. Ironically, these two actors’ careers seem to be going in completely opposite directions. Fisher, following her turn in Wedding Crashers, is a star on the rise, while Biggs, once a star in the American Pie films, is now settling for bit roles in other stars’ vehicles. Both are worthy of top billing here, though, exuding a consistent degree of believability, even when the script often calls for some outlandish, unbelievable behavior. Plus, Biggs’ try at charades is truly a comedic sight to behold.

One of the creepiest and funniest scenes of foreplay you’ll ever see involves Anderson’s parents (Margo Martindale and Edward Herrmann). These are the two characters that really show off Black’s edgy sense of humor, with the scene between Herrmann and Biggs walking the family dog being unforgettably funny. Soon after, Martindale shares a scene with Fisher that brings about a new form of crazy from this underappreciated character actress. Throw in a glorified cameo by Joe Pantoliano, a line of Jewish-themed children’s toys, and a sword-swallower in a Darth Vader mask, and Wedding Daze is something that only Michael Ian Black could have thought up.

Rating for Style: A-
Rating for Substance: A-

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.85:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicyes


Image Transfer Review: The anamorphic 1.85:1 widescreen presentation is marred by a distracting shimmer and quite a bit of edge enhancement. Granted, this screener copy is more than likely unrepresentative of the final release, but what I saw was far from impressive. The images are very soft, but the colors are bright and vivid, with consistent shadow and black levels.

Image Transfer Grade: C-

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
Dolby Digital
5.1
Englishno


Audio Transfer Review: The Dolby Digital 5.1 track fares far better than the video, but it’s still a typical romantic comedy mix. The surrounds are only used for the music cues, and directional effects are rarely heard. The often hilarious dialogue is crystal clear, blending in nicely with the rest of the audio elements.

Audio Transfer Grade: B

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 24 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English, Spanish, French with remote access
1 Other Trailer(s) featuring The Comebacks
3 Deleted Scenes
Packaging: Keep Case
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: The only extras are three deleted and alternate scenes that run for just over five minutes. It’s easy to see why these were left out of the final cut, but they are still very funny and worth a look.

Extras Grade: C-

 

Final Comments

The first real nice surprise of 2008, Michael Ian Black’s Wedding Daze is worth a rental, at the very least. Powered by an off-the-wall, funny screenplay and a pair of excellent performances, this is a great way to escape the typical romantic comedies that Hollywood continues to churn out. Fox’s disc isn’t anything to write home about, as the audio and video are nothing special and the only extras are a trio of deleted scenes.

 


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