Saturday, May 31, 2008

Vince Vaughn's Wild West Comedy Show DVD

DVD Review by Kam Williams

Headline: Vince Vaughn's Comedy Showcase Comes to DVD

In the Summer of 2005, Vince Vaughn came up with the novel idea of assembling an ensemble of entertainers in order to put on some old-fashioned variety shows mixing standup, improv and musical routines. The plan was for the troupe to barnstorm across the country by tour bus, performing in 30 cities in 30 days as they made their way from Hollywood into America’s heartland and back.
So, with the help of his best friend, former child star Peter Billingsley, Vince tapped Bret Ernst, John “Cap” Caparulo, Sebastian Maniscalco and Ahmed Ahmed to be his headliners. Then he invited a few of his showbiz pals to participate, including Jon Favreau, Justin Long, Dwight Yoakam and Keir O’Donnell. The upshot of their efforts is this surprisingly cerebral concert flick which divides its time evenly between the highlights of irreverent onstage acts and more sobering moments of introspection captured during downtime.
For instance, Sebastian, who was waiting tables when discovered, comes to tears while expressing his gratitude to Vince about being given this big break.
Bret, by contrast, is almost as emotional when reflecting upon the death of his gay elder brother from AIDS, while Ahmed Ahmed talks earnestly about how 9/11 has forced him to build his act around racial profiling and his being Arab-American.
Still, emcee Vince Vaughn comes off the best, here, as an altruistic icon willing to offer a helping hand to up-and-coming comics because he has never forgotten what it was like to be a struggling actor. He even altered their tight schedule in order to visit with victims of Katrina and to do a benefit, when the hurricane hit during the middle of the tour.
Comedy with a social conscious. How refreshing!

Excellent (4 stars)
Rated R for sexual humor and pervasive profanity.
Running time: 100 minutes
Studio: New Line Home Entertainment
DVD Extras: Feature-length commentary with executive producers Vince Vaughn and Peter Billingsley, second feature-length commentary with director Ari Sandel and comedians Bret Ernst, Sebastian Maniscalco and Ahmed Ahmed, “Behind the Scenes” featurette, “The Tour” featurette, “The Making of Vince Vaughn’s Wild West Comedy Show” featurette, “Wrap up” featurette and a theatrical trailer.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Vince Vaughn and John Favreau in particular seem to make a good team