January 28, 2012 7 Min Read

Review by: Fusion3600

Plot: What’s it about?

Willard Fillmore (Norm Macdonald) has one of the worst jobs you could think of, but he simply can’t bring himself to quit, as his deceased father told him to stick with it. Willard works as a…well, slave for a cookie mogul, Miss Crock (Elaine Stritch) and she makes him do everything around her house. He has to wash the windows, drive her car, bath her small & irritable canine, wash her clothes, you name it and this guy has to do it for Miss Crock. He asks for very little in return, but when his suit becomes torn and frayed, he decides to ask her for a new one. She laughs at his request and informs him to get back to work right away, which enrages Willard. Soon Christmas time rolls around and Miss Crock has a box for Willard, which he assumes is the suit he has asked for. But when he discovers some cheap cufflinks and a pie instead, he snaps and later overhears her as she says she plans to fire him the next day. Now Willard is on the rampage and along with his friend Rusty (Dave Chappelle), he plans to kidnap the little dog for ransom, then use the money to relax like he should be able to after so much work. The plan seems simple enough, but will they end up with the money or just end up getting Screwed?

This is a film that stayed in theaters for about the blink of an eye, but I managed to catch it about six or seven times in the original run. I know some of you might see that as excessive, but what can I say, I love this movie and the antics of Norm Macdonald. When you take him then add in guys like Danny DeVito and Dave Chappelle, this is a mixture I simply couldn’t resist and I knew this would be a movie I’d love. I was right and while this is not on the same level as Dirty Work, Screwed is a hilarious trek through madcap comedy. This isn’t a film that will make you think or anything like that, but if you like the talents involved, it will make you laugh and a lot at that. The humor is usually crude & offensive and as such, those turned off by that will want to pass this one up. But if you like ludicrous situations loaded with oddball comedic bliss, then Screwed is a movie you’ll want to check out. Universal has given this movie a terrific audio/video treatment, but not much in terms of supplements. But even so, this is a disc that’s more than worth the cash, whether you choose to rent or purchase.

I went to see the film based on the presence of one man, former SNL cast member Norm Macdonald. I know many folks feel his style of delivery and humor is lame, but just the mere utterance of common words from him can crack me up. I know he’s no comedic pioneer and his acting is dismal at best, but he never fails to entertain me and that is more than enough for me. I went to see Screwed because of him and I would any other films with Norm in prominent roles in the future. Macdonald doesn’t have much experience in feature films with major roles, but he seems to handle himself well and comes off with his usual wit and demeanor. His style isn’t for everyone and that’s for sure, but if you’re a fan like me then this film is one you’ll want to check out. Other films with screen time for Norm include Billy Madison, Man On The Moon, Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigelo, and the classic and personal favorite of mine, Dirty Work. The rest of the cast includes Danny DeVito (Twins, Throw Momma From The Train), Sherman Hemsley (Mr. Nanny, Senseless), Elaine Stritch (Krippendorf’s Tribe, Small Time Crooks), Daniel Benzali (A View To A Kill, Murder At 1600), Sarah Silverman (Overnight Delivery, Bulworth), and the always hilarious Dave Chappelle (Half Baked).

Video: How does it look?

Screwed is presented in a 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer. This transfer is spectacular in all respects and displays no grain or debris in the least, which is impressive for a low budget film like this. I saw this film on opening day and was taken back by how grainy the image was, thankfully Universal has issued a clean, compression error free transfer for this disc. The colors appear natural, but that is intentional and flesh tones seem warm and natural also, except for Grover who is supposed to look like that. The darker sequences show minimal grain and detail is always high, which came as a very pleasant surprise. I was expecting an average transfer at best, but Universal has delivered the goods once again.

Audio: How does it sound?

This isn’t the disc to pop in to show off your system, but the included Dolby Digital 5.1 tracks sounds great for a dialogue driven comedy. The music takes most advantage of the surrounds and comes across well, but the sound effects also have some nice moments also. I wasn’t expecting a lot of surround and I didn’t get that much in the end, but what surround use is present sounds terrific and is very well executed. The surrounds never sound forced or hollow, just smooth sailing with this track all the way. Of course the dialogue is what matters most and no problems there either, as vocals are loud & clear and no volume or clarity issues surface in the least. This disc also includes English captions and French subtitles.

Supplements: What are the extras?

Universal has included their usual assortment of goodies here, production notes, talent files, and the film’s theatrical trailer.

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