Revenge of the Nerds I/II

January 28, 2012 7 Min Read

Review by: Fusion3600

Plot: What’s it about?

Lewis (Robert Carradine) and Gilbert (Anthony Edwards) have just arrived at Adams College, prepared to begin a new life, one where they aren’t called nerds and picked on. But as they soon discover, some things never change and a band of boys from Alpha Beta’s fraternity take aim on them. After the Alpha’s burn their own house down in a drunken spell, the freshmen are thrown (literally) out of their dorms to make room for the jocks. So now Lewis, Gilbert, and a host of other rejects are living in the gym, since no frats would take them in. But when they remodel a house into their own and decide to fight back, it looks as if they might be able to overcome, for the first time ever. In their second adventure, Lewis leads the Tri-Lambs to Fort Lauderdale, where a massive conference is being held. Lewis thinks this might be different, but once again, the Alphas take offense to them and plan to kick them out for good. It won’t be easy by means, but can Lewis lead the troops back to the conference, clear their names, and prevent future abuse?

I love these movies and since Fox has packed them both on one disc, the value is tremendous. I admit the sequel lacks the hilarity that the first film delivered, but when you consider the low price involved, you can’t go wrong with this release. I think the first film is a classic raunchy comedy, right up there with Animal House and Porky’s. Of course, it supplies a lot of bad language, sexual situations, nudity, and drug use, so those easily offended viewers won’t like this one. I know it seems like the film is predictable and all, but the characters are terrific and it offers loads of laughs, so no harm done in that field. The post panty raid scene is a true classic, as are the events that take place at the Greek Games. The sequel isn’t as loaded as the original, but still has some memorable moments and it is cool to see most of the cast return to their roles. I recommend this release highly, as both films provide a lot of laughs and at such a low price point, I think this release is a real value.

These movies are ensemble driven pieces to be sure, so while Robert Carradine has the real lead, a lot of cast members are given substantial screen time. I like most of the characters, but if asked to choose a favorite, it would have to be Curtis Armstrong as Dudley Dawson, or Booger. Armstrong hasn’t been in a lot of movies, but he has several memorable roles and in these films, he steals more than a few scenes. I think he works better in the first film, but he is solid in the sequel also, as he plays off his fellow actors very well. I don’t think being a perverse belcher is classical acting, but Armstrong brings Booger to life in fine form and leaves a lasting impression. Other films with Armstrong include Big Bully, Better Off Dead, One Crazy Summer, The Clan of the Cave Bear, and of course, the other films in this series. Others seen in these two films include Robert Carradine (Mean Streets, Escape From L.A.), Larry B. Scott (The Karate Kid, Iron Eagle), Anthony Edwards (Top Gun, Tv’s ER), Tim Busfield (First Kid, Field of Dreams), Ted McGinley (The Big Tease, Young Doctors In Love), Donald Gibb (Bloodsport, Lost In America), and Courtney Thorne-Smith (Side Out, Summer School).

Video: How does it look?

Revenge of the Nerds is presented in a 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer. This one shows some signs of age, but still looks cleaner and sharper than ever before. The colors look good and never too faded, while flesh tones seem natural as well. No issues with black levels either, as detail is strong and contrast is well balanced. But the image does dated at times, although not an extreme degree, so all is well enough in the end. Revenge of the Nerds II is also shown in a 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer and looks much the same, but a little better, due to the younger age. In any case, these new transfers allow the films to look better than ever, which is enough for this reviewer.

Audio: How does it sound?

The audio is present in 2.0 surround, which is more than adequate for this material. The second film has a much more dynamic track, thanks to an original stereo mix, but both tracks seem solid and never leave the viewer wanting for more. The main presence in both cases comes from the musical soundtracks, which are well presented and make good use of the speakers. Not much to discuss in terms of sound effects, but the second film has more range for the most part, which is to be expected I think. The dialogue takes the spotlight in both tracks and sounds clean, no errors I could find with volume or crispness. The first film also includes mono tracks in English and French, while the second film has only the French mono as an alternate track. Both films come equipped with optional English subtitles, in case you’ll need them.

Supplements: What are the extras?

This release contains theatrical trailers for both films.

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