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Deuce Bigalow

Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo
Little Black Book Edition on DVD

The movies made by former Saturday Night Live alumni have, for the most part, been pretty terrible.

Rare home runs include Wayne’s World and Tommy Boy, and base hits include Coneheads and A Night at the Roxbury. Closer to being good than bad, and falling somewhere in between all the others, is Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo, a surprisingly amusing yet not-quite-as-amusing-as-it-could-be comedy starring Rob Schneider.

Deuce Bigalow is a professional fish tank cleaner. It’s a crappy job, and he doesn’t have any money, or friends, or self-esteem. The one joy in his life is getting the cute girl at the pet store to grab him the fish on the bottom of the tank, because certain parts of her body just might be exposed to cold water.

One day, a client asks him to look after his place while he’s away on business. It’s a pretty swingin’ pad, and he can stay there if he wants, provided he doesn’t answer the phone. As luck would have it, Deuce invariably ends up destroying the very fish tank he was hired to look after. Needing many thousands of dollars in very little time, he decides to answer the phone.

The client, as it turns out, is a gigolo, and Deuce Bigalow (who coincidentally has a name that rhymes with the profession) takes over the role.

During his exploits, he meets a series of interesting women, but he eventually makes enough money to buy everything he needs. It’s not over yet, however…

Deuce Bigalow has some genuinely funny moments. It also has some that don’t work. It also also has some that start out okay, but get less funny the longer they go on. Sometimes it relies too much on toilet humor when normal humor would have worked better. Overall it works pretty well, and at less than an hour and a half it won’t take up too much of your time - and how's that for a recommendation?

Rob Schneider is likable enough in the lead, but William Forsythe in a bizarre role is hilarious to watch. We also see smaller roles from the likes of Eddie Griffin and Oded Fehr.

It’s a sometimes-cute movie that doesn’t too often take things too far. There are worse movies out there, and there are worse ways to kill an hour and a half.

The new “Little Black Book Edition” of the film doesn’t really seem to have anything worthwhile to offer to attract upgraders. The 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer looks solid, with rich colors and good detail, but it’s by no means noteworthy. The 5.1 Dolby Digital track is a disappointment, with sometimes muddy dialogue and sound effects that are too loud. Bass is strong, but it can’t make up for the flaws.

Extras include an 8-minute fluff featurette that is completely by-the-book, a 3-minute director’s video diary (really boring), and a “Fly-on-the-Set” featurette that shows a few scenes in the process of filming. The only thing worth watching, really, is the deleted scenes section, which offers up a couple of amusing moments.

It’s not a bad presentation if you don’t own the film, but most likely not worthy of a double dip.

Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo, from Buena Vista Home Entertainment
88 minutes, anamorphic widescreen (1.85:1) 16x9 enhanced, Dolby Digital 5.1
Starring Rob Schneider, William Forsythe, Eddie Griffin, Arija Bareikis, Oded Fehr
Produced by Sid Ganis, Barry Bernardi
Written by Harris Goldberg & Rob Schneider, directed by Mike Mitchell

Jim Bray's columns are available through the TechnoFile Syndicate.

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