Blu-ray and DVD Reviews

Knocked Up (Unrated 2-Disc Collector's Edition)

Reviewed by: Scott Chitwood
Movie Rating:
8 out of 10
Extras Rating:
10 out of 10
Movie Details:
View here

Buy this DVD at Amazon.com

Rating: Not Rated

Starring:
Katherine Heigl as Alison Scott
Seth Rogen as Ben Stone
Paul Rudd as Pete
Leslie Mann as Debbie
Jay Baruchel as Jay
Jonah Hill as Jonah
Jason Segel as Jason
Martin Starr as Martin

Special Features:
Deleted Scenes
Extended / Alternate Scenes
Finding Ben Stone - The Story of the "Other" Actors Who Were Fired Before Seth Rogan Was Hired
Exclusive Extended Kuni Gone Wild Scene!
Stripper Confidential - A Look at Directing the Stripper Scene
Gummy: The 6th Roommate - A True Story
Video Diaries - Director Judd Apatow Takes You on an Exclusive Behind-the-Scenes Tour
Kids on the Loose
Beard-O-Rama
Kuni Files
Loudon Wainwright III Scoring Session
Loudon Wainwright III - Live at McCabe's
First Sex On Camera
Topless Scenes - Restaurant
Raw Footage - Geisha House, Swingers
Katherine Heigl Audition
Line-O-Rama Version 2
Two More Gag Reels

Other Info:
Widescreen (1.85:1)
Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound
French and Spanish Language
French and Spanish Subtitles
Running Time: 2 Hours 13 Minutes

Synopsis:
Ben Stone has never really grown up. He has no job, smokes pot, and hangs out with his loser friends. He's the total opposite of Alison Scott, a beautiful and ambitious up and coming reporter at E!. The two meet one night at a club and after an evening of heavy drinking, the two end up having an ill-advised one night stand. The result is, of course, an unplanned pregnancy.

Alison fears for her job at E!, but decides to keep the baby. She also decides that Ben should be involved as well. After the initial shock, the two agree to try and get to know each other better and make a relationship. But along with the fears of the impending birth and parenthood, the two must deal with learning to love each other despite all signs pointing towards it not working.

This version of "Knocked Up" is not rated. The theatrical version is rated R for sexual content, drug use and language.

The Movie:
"Knocked Up" follows the same formula that worked on "The 40-Year-Old Virgin." Both films are romantic comedies wrapped in a raunchy sex comedy exterior. Both films have a sympathetic everyman / man-child that ends up being the romantic lead and hero. Both films have witty dialogue and a strong supporting cast. And, of course, both movies have many of the same cast members.

I think what makes "Knocked Up" work so well is that many of the situations are familiar to people in the audience. As a parent myself, I've had to deal with reading all the pregnancy books, dealing with a hormonal wife, adjusting to parenthood, and all the other good stuff that is joked about in the movie. But "Knocked Up" goes well beyond that. There are jokes about kids on the internet, suspicious spouses, websites, fantasy baseball, and more. They even joke about "Star Wars," "Back to the Future," and "Spider-Man 3" which wins it serious geek points in my book. So there's something here to make you laugh if you're a parent, if you're dating, or if you're single.

Another big part of what makes "Knocked Up" work is the supporting cast. You never know what background character is going to come out of nowhere and say one of the funniest lines of the movie. In one scene, the girlfriend of one of Ben's friends comes out of nowhere and delivers the most bizarre commentary on pregnancy that you'll ever hear. In another scene in an E! office, snide comments by a female executive sitting off to the side come out of nowhere and generate a lot of laughs. Doctors, nurses, and even little kids all make comments that upstage the main stars. Every single supporting character has a moment to shine in this movie. Even Ryan Seacrest and James Franco, in brief cameos, get some good jokes in.

That being said, Katherine Heigl and Seth Rogen more than deliver (no pun intended) in their leading roles. Heigl proves she's more than just a pretty face as Alison Scott. She's funny, witty, and really puts herself on the line as she goes through the pregnancy in the role. From the morning sickness to the giant belly, she had the most at stake with her role and it paid off. Seth Rogen also does a great job as Ben Stone. He turns into the most unlikely romantic leading man since Steve Carell in "The 40-Year-Old Virgin." Rogen continues to display his wit and improvisational skills in "Knocked Up." He actually gets a second beautiful partner with Paul Rudd as Pete. The two make a fun comedy duo and Rudd shows his comedy talents yet again. More than a match for him is Leslie Mann as Debbie, Pete's wife. She's beautiful and sassy and perfectly portrays the angst and rollercoaster emotions of the beautiful single turned mommy. Many of the married women in the audience will identify with her.

Another interesting thing about "Knocked Up" is that it is not really pro-life or pro-choice. Abortion is discussed as an option, but the movie doesn't take a stand on it. Joanna Kerns pushes her daughter to have an abortion then have a 'real child' later. Simultaneously, Harold Ramis tells Ben having a kid was the best thing that ever happened to him. I think ultimately the film conveys a message that everything can work out in the end and it's ultimately worth keeping a baby. It's an interesting message from an otherwise raunchy comedy.

The only thing I wasn't crazy about with "Knocked Up" was the extremely raunchy humor. It's obviously going to appeal to a lot of audience members, but I didn't care for all of it. The movie would have been just as fun and entertaining without it. And from a business perspective, I think it probably could have made more money as a PG-13 film than an R rated one.

"Knocked Up" is also over 2 hours long. While many people might have a problem with this, I found that the time flew by.

The Extras:
There is a very impressive selection of bonus features on this DVD. Here's what you'll find:

Deleted Scenes - There are 30 minutes of deleted scenes included in the extras. There are a few new scenes between Katherine Heigl and the roommates. There are also a series of scenes where each of the roommates come into Ben's room in the middle of the night, crawl into his bed, and wake him with their troubles. One amusing scene has Jonah talking about his deathly fear of babies.

Extended / Alternate Scenes - This is pretty self explanatory. There are extended versions of the club scene, the 'morning after', the fantasy baseball fight, and more.

Finding Ben Stone - This is a mockumentary showing Judd Apatow trying out a bunch of different actors for the role of Ben Stone before settling on Seth Rogen. You see scenes played out with "Superbad's" Michael Sera, David Krumholtz, Bill Hader, Gerry Bednob (from "The 40-Year-Old Virgin"), James Franco, Justin Long, and others. The scenes start out fine and usually crumble under huge egos, overacting, or rants by Judd Apatow. It's a hilarious 30 minute video.

Exclusive Extended Kuni Gone Wild Scene! - This video shows real life doctor and comedian Ken Jeong cutting loose and improvising in the delivery scene. The guy is funny and certainly leaves an impression after viewing this.

Stripper Confidential - This short video shows Judd Apatow directing the stripper scene.

Gummy: The 6th Roommate - This is another mockumentary talking about how David Krumholtz (nicknamed 'Gummy' by Apatow's daughter) was supposed to play one of the roommates, but bailed out after getting (and losing) a role in a Woody Allen film. Apatow wasn't bitter. Not at all.

Video Diaries - Director Judd Apatow hosts these numerous videos shot during the full making of the film. You certainly get to know the director well after watching all these.

Kids on the Loose - These are random clips of Apatow's daughters acting cute and funny while shooting this movie.

Beard-O-Rama - This short video is dedicated to Martin Starr and his much-made-fun-of beard.

Kuni Files - Ken Jeong gets more bonus feature lovin' as he is followed on the set of the film for his big scene.

Loudon Wainwright III Scoring Session - This featurette discusses the music for the movie and its composition by Wainwright. I certainly appreciated the music a lot more after hearing this.

Loudon Wainwright III - Live at McCabe's - Wainwright performs "Grey in LA" and "Daughter." I really enjoyed this music.

First Sex on Camera - This featurette interviews Rogen and Jonah Hill on the day of their first movie sex scenes.

Topless Scenes - Seth Rogen performs an entire scene from Knocked Up… without a shirt.

Raw Footage - This is raw, unedited footage of the scenes of the Geisha House and Swingers. It gives you a bit more appreciation for the improvisation in the film.

Katherine Heigl Audition - This video is from the actresses audition. They act out the fight scene in the car between Ben and Alison.

Line-O-Rama Version 2 - These are clips of more improvised lines and dialogue from the film.

Two More Gag Reels - Put these two gag reels together and you have about 15 minutes of bloopers and gags.

The Bottom Line:
With a great cast and hilarious performances, "Knocked Up" is easily the funniest movie of 2007.

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