DVD Review: Epic Movie (Unrated Edition)
Release Date: May 22, 2007
Distributor: 20th Century Fox
· Jason Friedberg
· Aaron Seltzer
· Kal Penn
· Adam Campbell
· Jayma Mays
· Faune Chambers
· Crispin Glover
· Jennifer Coolidge
· Tony Cox
· IMDb: Epic Movie
by R.J. Carter
Published: May 21, 2007
Very few films can be called epics. And that's the problem with this film -- it's a spirited spoof, but the films it targets to skewer aren't all epics.
The film start with a spin on "The Da Vinci Code", where we encounter the first of our four heroes. Lucy (Jayma Mays) is the adopted daughter of an old museum curator (David Carradine), who has been kind of killed by an albino monk (Kevin Hart). During her escape, she gets a Willy candy bar, inside of which is a golden ticket inviting her to an epic adventure.
Meanwhile, in a Mexican orphanage, we meet up with Edward (Kal Penn) where we get something of a "Nacho Libre" spoof. So far, we've spoofed two films, neither of which comes anywhere close to the definition of epic. He also ends up with a golden ticket.
Meanwhile, orphan Susan (Faune Chambers) is on her way to meet her new adoptive parents, Brad and Angelina. But there's a problem -- she has snakes on the plane! Thankfully, a Sam Jackson clone comes in, shouts out some MF language, and throws Susan out. She lands on a Paris Hilton lookalike, and ends up with her candy bar -- and it's golden ticket.
MEANWHILE, orphan Peter (Adam Campbell) has problems of his own at the Mutant Academy (home of the Fighting Wolverines.) Even among mutants, he's an outcast, as the X-Men bully him. His mutant power is no help. In times of trouble, he sprouts chicken wings, bawks, and runs away. After a beatdown from Wolverine, Rogue, Cyclops, Storm, Mystique (Carmen Electra) and Magneto, he finds a candy bar -- with a golden ticket.
They all meet up outside the Willy chocolate company, where Willy himself (Crispin Glover) gives them the tour, before telling them the secret ingredient that makes all the candy taste yum-yum: human parts! He dismembers them and makes them all into candy. Fortunately, they're all okay, and they break out of their prison room to hide from the freaky little man. Which is when Lucy finds the wardrobe into Gnarnia (with a silent 'G', for legal reasons.) The wardrobe scene is one of the few places where the beaver icon special feature comes in -- if you activate it and it shows up, press enter for greater gratuitousness than the movie contains. This particular scene involves extra scenes of the bikini-clad model escaping the wardrobe. Since this is the unrated version of the film, the extra gratuitousness is actually less so than the completed scene, in which the model emerges stark head-to-toe nude.
So Lucy's in Gnarnia, emerging in a completely different outfit but Jayma Mays is just so gosh-darned cute in it that I'll forgive any plot element for her sake alone. She meets Mr. Tumnus (Hector Jimenez), who shows her his crib Cribs-style, featuring another beaver gratuity icon and a spoof on "Mission: Impossible". Here, Lucy learns about the White Bitch (Jennifer Coolidge) and her plans to build a terrible WMD.
But Edward has come into the wardrobe after Lucy, and has been approached by the White Bitch and her minion (Tony Cox). With her MILF appearance and the ability to make a cold 40 appear at will, she easily wins Edward over, inviting her to her White Castle -- a nice throwaway to Penn's cult classic, "Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle".
Peter and Susan soon appear, and at Tumnus's ransacked crib they meet Harry Beaver, Tumnus's life partner, who tells them that it's destiny that the four of them have been brought here -- they just need to see the clues. The clues, of course, harken back once again to "The Da Vinci Code", as we see all four of the characters seated behind Christ in a painting of "The Last Supper". Peter has a "Superman Returns" daydream, and Lucy opens a cryptex in which are four birth certificates, proving that all four of them are siblings -- the Pervertski siblings.
As the White Bitch plans to release her WMD -- a crystal that will cause global earthquakes and grow a new continent -- Peter, Susan and Lucy must go to Hogwarts to train, where they run into Harry Potter and the rapidly aging cast, while Edward rots in prison until he is rescued by Captain Jack Swallows and his Caribbean pirates. Darrell Hammond does a more-than-passable imitation of Johnny Depp imitating Keith Richards, and it's a pity his part wasn't larger -- but it does lead into a nice video parody, "Lazy Pirate Day".
At Aslo's camp -- which includes such hangers-on as James Bond, Borat, Chewbacca, and the "Talladega Nights" racing team -- Peter, Susan, and Lucy encounter the half-lion, half-man Aslo (Fred Willard) in bed with another topless female. Aslo will help them rescue Edward, but not without a price: they all have to sleep with him.
When the final battle comes, it's just our four heroes against an army. So naturally all four of them are killed -- until Peter gets his hands on the "Click" universal remote and pauses them (setting up the third and final beaver gratuity icon for the passing jogger scene.) Using this to heal his siblings' injuries, he then leads them into mangling and destroying the paused-in-place army. And Edward uses its TiVo function to erase the White Bitch's Evil Plot.
This disc boasts a boatload of special features. In addition to the aforementioned beaver icon (toggled via the "How Gratuitous" option, the viewer can also toggle on the audio commentary with writers and directors Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer, or the option "Breaking Wind: An Epic Journey Into the Sounds of an Epic Movie", which also affects the running of the feature presentation.
"Everyone Loves Beaver" is a four minute cast interview segment where they talk about the various hook-ups that occurred both on and off camera. The characters are also questioned on what their porn movie would be titled if their characters were to appear in one in the two and a half minute segment, "Epic Porn".
The five and a half minute "Making the Video: Lazy Pirate Day" is a bit of fun, if only because we get more of Captain Jack Swallows, as is the alternate ending with the singing Oompa Loompas. And no DVD seems to be complete these days without showing the outtakes where the actors screwed up.
Further featurettes answer the questions, "What Makes Aslo So Irresistible?" and "Hot or Not: Character Turn Ons and Turn Offs". The video short, "Die Libre" is a "Nacho Libre" parody video that won the "Epic Movie" viral video contest. And if you're really hardcore about learning everything there is to know about "Epic Movie", there are two "Fox Movie Channel Presents" special segments: "Making a Spoof" and "In Character with Fred Willard".
Previews on this disc include "My Super Ex-Girlfriend", "Date Movie", and "Reno 911!: Miami".