|Hall Pass (Enlarged Edition) (2011)|
|Written by Noah Fleming|
|Wednesday, 15 June 2011|
Of course I don't speak for everyone, but the consensus I found is that "Hall Pass" is unfunny. You may chuckle here or there, but that isn't a good sign for a comedy. The film is undeveloped and doesn't even approach the beginnings of the film's potential.
Owen Wilson and Jason Sudeikis star as friends Rick and Fred. They are middle-aged men who never grew-up. They are each married but only have their heads turned by other women. I'm sorry, but are you telling me that Jenna Fischer and Christina Applegate are not hot enough for you. Give me a break.
Rick and Fred's absurd behavior lead to a hall pass from their wives. Basically, it is a week off from marriage. There is no such thing but okay, just go with it. The film spends the entirety of what should be a laugh riot second act in the trenches instead. It is boring beyond belief. Rick, Fred and friends go to an Applebees, a resort golf course and that is about it. It is all talk, talk, talk. None of the stints are really funny.
After an hour of mediocre sketches, the film delves into a sentimental third act. The wives have been off on their on fidelity test. The guys now realize that they really don't have a shot with these young, beautiful college girls and how much they miss their wives.
The film is predictable from beginning to end. There isn't much more to say than that. "Hall Pass" is an uninspired and poorly written film. Potential is there, but unfortunately the audience isn't the filmmaker this time.
The Blu-ray video quality bests the quality of the film. Still, it falls right in the middle of all those blockbuster comedies. If you want an overbaked, saturated image then this is the Blu-ray for you. The fleshtones are cooked. On the plus side, this saturated image is not really distracting. It can be quite the uplifting factor against the crummy nature of the movie. The details are crisp and clean. Black levels are typical of the genre and shadows are a moot point since every scene is completely lit. There is no problem with artifacting of any type. Still, this transfer pushes a bit too hard and comes across as pseudo eye candy.
"Hall Pass" comes with a DTS-HD MA 5.1 audio track that is indistinguishable from most of the genre. This is a chatty film and thus is largely front heavy. The dialogue is clean and remains fair intelligible throughout. The dialogue does lack a certain weight that makes it weak. The stereo separation in the front is decent. The surround channels are virtually empty for the majority of the film. There are a few sequences that deliver some random and blurred noise in the rear channels. Never do the surround provide an enveloping or immersive experience. The LFE channel gets a little play during the nightclub, but even then it is weaker than it should be. Overall, this is a fine audio track for the genre, but could be capable of more given more attention in the sound design and/or budget processes.
The Enlarged Edition of "Hall Pass" contains both the theatrical version and a 6-minute extended version. The extended version contains six minutes of non-funny material. A better subtitle for for this release would simply be extended edition. Aside from the extended cut, there is a mere six minutes of special features. There are a few deleted scenes and a ridiculous gag reel. The disc is BD-Live enabled. A DVD/Digital Copy is also included in the package.
"Hall Pass" is an underdeveloped film that misses on almost all the sketches. I'm sure there are plenty of people that would find this to be a non-stop laugh riot, but I would still bet that the majority of audiences will shut off the film before the end. The audio and video qualities are decent but not much off the mark from typical comedy films. Skip this one.