Cover Art and Menus: 4/10
The cover for Strange Wilderness is just a shot of the main characters attempting to act funny, on a lime green background, with the shadow of Bigfoot looming in front of them. It is not clever, and it is not good. It seems forced and lame to be honest.
The menus are pretty bland also, as they are simply an animated screen. Unfortunately you feel like there was not much effort put into this release from the cover and the menus, and that theme seems to continue when you start the movie.
Strange Wilderness has a few extras that are included on the disk, and most of them feel like just that; an extra. There is nothing here that really stands out, and while I can see while all of the deleted scenes were left out, I am sad to say that they were not all that much worse than the scenes that they left in the movie.
The first few features are all shorts, entitled Cooker’s Song, the Turkey, and What Do We Do? These are all shorts depicting the filming of different shots of the movie, and they all include some sort of glimpse at the improvisation that occurred on the set as they made Strange Wilderness. Basically these show behind the scenes action as they unfolded.
Also included as an extra is a 21 minute Comedy Central promotional piece, called Reel Comedy: Strange Wilderness, which is a group of on set interviews with the cast of the movie, mixed with clips of the film. The interviews are not horrible and the piece moves along at a good clip.
Then there are about 10 deleted scenes that really are not that funny. Like I mentioned, they were left out for a reason, but they were not that different from the actual shots that were put into the film. They are flat and not worth watching twice.
I was actually excited to see Steve Zahn, Allen Covert, Justin Long, Kevin Heffernan, and Jonah Hill work together. I figured going in that this movie had a lot of potential, and could be hysterical. I mean when you put in the Mac guy, McLovin’s buddy, the guy from Grandma’s Boy, Farva from Supertroopers, and the guy from Happy Texas together, you have a plethora of potential humor. Potential is the key word here though. It is not like they were collectively bad, but it just felt like there was not much to work with in terms of a story or any real plan for humor. It made me feel like they were just along for the ride.
I am not saying that I did not laugh at some of the parts of Strange Wilderness, but the story was so weak, and the humor so forced that it just was not good. It really felt like this was dialed in by almost all of those involved, and it looked and felt like I was watching an improve night instead of a finished film.
Peter Gaulke (Zahn) is the son of a famous wilderness TV show star. When his father dies, Peter is left to take over for his old man, but as it turns out, Peter is a bit of a misfit, and his rag tag crew can barely hold the show together. Peter learns that the show is being cancelled in two weeks due to the fact that it is so horrible, and so he sets out to find Bigfoot when one of his father’s friends presents him with a map to the legendary monster.
The crew embarks on the journey to get footage of Bigfoot, which they feel will save the show.
The shots of the footage that the crew has supposedly put together for the show, along with the voiceovers are pretty funny, and some (and I mean some) of the scenes in which the group interacts made me laugh, but overall I was dragged through a lot of stuff that was not remotely funny to get to the few gems. The overall output is crude and it feels sophomoric.
I am all for the occasional idiotic comedy movie, but Strange Wilderness was just not good enough. It is a stoner movie where perhaps they smoked too much while making it.
Video & Audio: 6/10
The video really was not bad. It seemed crisp for the most part, and the colors were decent. There were a few times that I found some fuzzy edges, but overall the transfer was good.
The audio was ok, but with this being a comedy, there was not a lot going on. No real use of the surround sound, even though Strange Wilderness was presented in 5.1 surround. Again, there just wasn’t much going on, but the dialogue was consistently clear throughout the film.
Umm, unless you are into collecting stoner movies, and you don’t mind if this one is not really very good, I would skip this one altogether. I had high hopes (sorry about that) that this would be funny, as the cast had real potential, but I would recommend skipping this one and perhaps renting Grandma’s Boy if you are really jonesing for a movie to watch while you violate local drug laws.
Overall Score 3/10