Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story (2004) - Unrated [Blu-ray]

Genre(s): Comedy / Sports
Fox || Unrated - 93 minutes - $34.98 || December 9, 2008
Reviewer: Tyler Thomas || Posted On: 2008-12-13


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.:: F I L M ::.
The Film

S P E C I A L
.: F E A T U R E S :.

Special Features

.:: V I D E O ::.
Video

.:: A U D I O ::.
Audio

.:: O V E R A L L ::.
Overall
.::MOVIE INFORMATION::.
Director: Rawson Marshall Thurber
Writer(s): Rawson Marshall Thurber (written by)
Cast: Vince Vaughn, Ben Stiller, Christine Taylor, Rip Torn, Justin Long, Stephen Root


Theatrical Release Date: June 18, 2004


.::DVD INFORMATION::.
Supplemental Material:
  • Feature-Length Commentary
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Dodgeball Boot Camp: Training for Dodgeball Featurette
  • The Anatomy of a Hit
  • Justin Long: A study in Ham & Cheese
  • Dodgeball: Go for the Gold
  • Bloopers/Gag Reel


Technical Information:
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Widescreen (2.35)
  • English (DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean

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.::THE FILM::.

Alright, we all played dodge ball when we were kids in school. The barbaric sport forced kids to throw big red balls at each other to knock them out. When I was a kid I was knocked out first every time we played the stupid game. Probably because I was standing still in the middle of the court with my back turned in hopes they would hit me so I could go back to reading books. Anyways, that brings up Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story.

Peter La Fleur (Vince Vaughn) is the owner of a struggling gym known as “The Average Joe’s,” which houses like its name suggests for their clientele. White Goodman (Ben Stiller) is the owner of a gym in relatively close-by that is taking away all of Fleur’s business.

Fleur is in the hole $50,000, and has tried everything to create business and revenue for the gym which he fears will close down. After unsuccessful attempts at trying to raise money including a car wash that gets little business because of competing bikini models doing the same thing on the same day, Gordon (Stephen Root) suggests they play dodge ball. So they do, in hopes to get the money to save the gym. Fluer gathers together some of his friends, including Justin (Justin Long), Dwight (Chris Williams), and Steve the Pirate (Alan Tudyk), only to name a few, to start training.

Kate (Christine Taylor) is a lawyer working for the bank trying to close down the gym as though they owe too much money, but eventually joins in on the game and is seen as not only Fleur’s love interest but also Goodman’s as well. In a few hilarious scenes, Goodman attempts to hit on her using such lines as “We should mate” but changes it to “We should date” after she gets a little too creepified from him. That and he uses a certain pump to make something of his appear bigger.

In an attempt to foil the Joe’s from winning the tournament, Goodman forms his own team known as the Cobra’s to stop them. As I’m sure you’ve already guessed by now, it comes down to the final battle of Joe’s versus Cobra’s in an entertaining final bout. Who will win? Will Fleur get Kate? Why does Steve act like a pirate? All questions can be answered by watching the flick.

This is a great movie. Goodman is funny in every scene he is in, as is his trainer Me’Shell (Jamal Duff) and a few other cameos by such actor’s as Chuck Norris and Jason Bateman. The movie may be a few years old, but the comedy is still as entertaining as it was back in the day. Which is really four years ago, but it seems like a lot longer. The chemistry overall works between Goodman and Fleur, the sport of dodge ball is fun to watch, and the movie flows perfectly from start to finish.



.::SPECIAL FEATURES::.

While it may seem like a decent package, the only thing of value here is the commentary.

Feature-length commentary by Writer/Director Rawson Marshall Thurber, Ben Stiller, and Vince Vaughn: One of the best commentaries ever, whether or not it was intended to be. Thurber and Vaughn fly solo for about ten minutes until Stiller shows up late. In the mean time, the two dish dirt on Stiller while Vaughn eats potato chips and drinks beer. There’s fairly little commentary about the movie, which ends up ticking off Thurber to the point of him leaving. This is well worth a listen to for some laughs. Vaughn and Stiller are a riot after Thurber leaves. About midway through the cast leaves and the studio decided to play There’s Something About Mary’s audio commentary track instead.

Deleted/Extended Scenes (w/ optional commentary) (12 minutes): A ton of scenes that didn’t make it in the editing room as well as a few parts that are longer than the movie ones. There’s nothing funny or worthwhile here.

Dodgeball Boot Camp: Training For Dodgeball (3 minutes): A short clip on how the films cast prepared for the movie by playing dodge ball.

Justin Long: A Study in Ham & Cheese (3 minutes): Justin Long is presented in a few scenes that aren’t funny or entertaining.

Dodgeball: Go For the Gold (1 minute): Ben Stiller and Vince Vaughn sit down to talk about the sport of dodge ball and the movie.

Bloopers/Gag Reel (3 minutes): The usual of actors flubbing and screwing up lines. Some of them are pretty funny.

More with the Dodgeball Dancers (2 minutes): Once again, exactly how it sounds. The females who danced during the movie get a few extra minutes to show off their dancing talents.

Finally, there’s a somewhat hidden icon on the last menu that if you click on it, Ben Stiller shows up in the fat suit from the movie and lets you know to find the Easter Eggs by hitting ENTER every time he snaps his fingers.



.::AUDIO & VIDEO::.

Fox is known for having exceptional video quality for their releases, and this one is no different. With an AVC-2.35:1 codec, this is a major upgrade from the regular DVD cut. Colors are bright, there are no artifacts present, and little to no edge enhancement was used. The only reason it’s not received a full five star review is because there’s nothing to really write about that makes it stand out. It’s a great release, but it’s not demo material.

Presented in a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track, Dodgeball sounds great for the most part. It does however have some issues with range for the dialogue scenes, as some sounds too light while others are booming. Take for example the actual dodge ball events later in the movie, they sound fairly loud. While the starting sequences of the film tend to be a little lighter. Other than that, the movie sounds great. A few of the scenes have thunderous qualities and you can literally hear the ball hitting the players during the sport shots.



.::OVERALL::.

Dodgeball is a film about the sport that no one really cared about until the movie. Years later the sport isn’t any bigger, but the flick will live on as one of Vaughn and Stiller’s best movies to date. With above-average audio and video qualities as well as a hilarious commentary track, this is one that is easy to recommend as a comedy on a Saturday night.