The Whole Ten Yards

January 28, 2012 6 Min Read

Review by: Matt Brighton

Plot: What’s it about?

“The Whole Ten Yards” is just a bad movie. I once heard film critic, and the other half of Ebert and Roeper, Richard Roeper say that he wanted every movie he saw to be good. He then went onto say that it wasn’t fun to sit and watch bad movies or movies that tried to hard. Well, I’m sort of in Mr. Roeper’s field and I’m inclined to agree. There’s very little, if any, good that comes out of this movie that has any redeeming qualities. This is the sequel, of course, to 2000’s “The Whole Nine Yards” (even the title is unoriginal) and while that wasn’t perfect, it did become a sleeper hit and had some genuinely funny moments. Where that one succeeded, this one fails as all the characters seem to either be trying too hard or not trying at all. That said, Director Howard Deutch (subbing for Director of the original, Jonathan Lynn) seems to never really have the pulse of the movie down. Suffice it to say that I found myself looking at my watch a bit too much for a movie that doesn’t even break the 100 minute mark. And away we go…

We’re provided no recap of what happened during the original, so it’s assumed that you liked it so much that the characters of Jimmy, Oz and everyone else have embodied your dreams since you left the theater. In case that didn’t happen, too bad. Jimmy (Bruce Willis) is now retired and walks around in pink bunny slippers. He’s more of a housewife and though funny, the joke quickly wears out its welcome. Lazlo (Kevin Pollack) has just gotten out of prison and kidnaps Cynthia (Natasha Henstridge). Now it’s up to Oz (Matthew Perry) to get her back and not let Jimmy and Jill (Amanda Peet) in on the secret. If there’s one good thing that can be said it’s that Amanda Peet is the bright spot of the movie. She injected the original with some of its best scenes and she does so here as well. This alone can’t save the movie as it seems that the rest of the cast just showed up for a paycheck (like Willis and Perry don’t have enough cash already). I can’t possibly imagine a fan base for the movie out there and its dismal showing at the box office virtually guarantees that there won’t be “The Whole Eleven Yards”, but you never know…

Video: How does it look?

Let me preface this section by saying that we were sent the full-screen version for review. That’s the only version that was sent out, so while a widescreen version does exist (albeit separately), the full-frame is what was used for this review. Now if Warner (and other studios) still put the full-frame and widescreen version on the same DVD, like they used to, this wouldn’t be a problem now would it? Anyway, my whining aside, this looked to be a pretty good transfer. It’s a new to DVD release and though the usual faults are more noticeable in a non-anamorphic transfer (like this), I can only image that the widescreen version makes up for these. That said, there’s a bit of grain that can be seen and the detail isn’t quite as clear as I’d expected. It’s certainly not “bad” by any means, as some of the full-frame DVD’s look pretty darn good, but when a widescreen version exists, it makes us appreciate how good they look when compared with the same movie in a different aspect ratio. The aspect ratio is 1.85:1, so a lot of action isn’t missed, but in some scenes it does appear to be mis-framed. On the whole, fairly good but we’ve become spoiled by the widescreen films and that’s a great thing…

Audio: How does it sound?

Audio wise, the Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack delivers as expected. While it’s not the most robust track out there, it does have several scenes in which the surrounds are used (much like the its predecessor). Dialogue is clean and natural and void of any distortion, as we might expect. I did find some of the action scenes to be a bit hollow sounding, and was a bit surprised by that. Aside from those minor faults, Warner delivers a rather nice track here.

Supplements: What are the extras?

Aside from the theatrical trailer, the only other supplement is a feature-length commentary by Director Howard Deutch and Screenwriter George Gallo. The two seem to know what they produced and it’s evident in their track. While not too talkative, it’s not really that informative either. I much more enjoyed his track on “The Replacements”, a far better movie that took itself a lot less seriously. In any case, it’s there for the listening, but I don’t know who would want to listen to it more than once.

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