Plot: What’s it about?
Benjamin Purvis (Michael Angarano) has aspirations of becoming a science fiction author, just like his favorite scribe, Dr. Chevalier (Jemaine Clement). After all, if Chevalier could find literary success as a teen, then that means Benjamin might be able to as well. He has poured his heart and soul into Yeast Lords, a tale about a futuristic warrior who battles the odds and tries to keep yeast out of the hands of evil. When he is able to attend a writing camp with Chevalier as a guest, Benjamin is thrilled to have his hero read his work. And Chevalier is impressed with Yeast Lords, to the extent that he begins to re-write the novel in his own words, to steal the creative output. Meanwhile Benjamin allows a local low rent filmmaker to make a movie out of his book, which lands him in hot water, when the story resembles that of Chevalier’s latest release. Will Chevalier get his comeuppance, will Ben’s mother realize her own dreams, and can Benjamin ever reclaim his masterwork as his own?
An attempt to recapture the box office magic of Napoleon Dynamite, Gentlemen Broncos tries to have the same kind of quirky traits that made that movie a hit. Of course, Gentlemen Broncos was unable to duplicate that feat. Despite director Jared Hess’ hard work to include offbeat characters, outdated dialogue, and an overall sense of quirkiness, Gentlemen Broncos feels forced most of the time, which spoils the fun. Some moments work and the concepts behind some of the characters are humorous, but it all never comes together like it should. Jemaine Clement is quite good in his role, while the colorful supporting cast does what it can, but is held back by the script. The lead is miscast, as Michael Angarano struggles with almost every line and never finds a natural rhythm. This is not a bad movie per se, but it should have been better than this. So while you might want to see Gentlemen Broncos at some point, don’t be in a rush to check this out.
Video: How does it look?
Gentlemen Broncos is presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen. This is a rock solid visual effort, but not one that stands out as overly impressive. The image is clean and clear, with no problems to mention. The detail level is strong, but doesn’t pop off the screen like the best HD transfers tend to do. Even so, colors look bright and natural, contrast is smooth, and overall the visuals are handled quite well here.
Audio: How does it sound?
This DTS HD 5.1 soundtrack is rather basic, but it more than covers the needs of the material. The main surround presence is the music, which sounds great. There isn’t a lot of other presence really, as the movie is driven by dialogue. The vocals are clear and never hard to understand to understand though, which is great news. This is by no means a bad presentation, but the movie simply has very basic audio demands. This disc also includes Spanish and French language tracks, as well as subtitles in English and Spanish.
Supplements: What are the extras?
This disc includes an enjoyable audio commentary track, some deleted scenes, outtakes, and some featurettes. One of the featurettes is actually quite informative, while the others are typical promotional fluff.