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Super Troopers 2 (Blu-ray Review)

Recent years have given rise to many sequels and reboots to films and even TV series from years ago. Super Troopers 2 is something that’s been talked about plenty for years but never came to fruition. Much of that was due to the first film being more of a home video/cult favorite than a worthy cinematic endeavor. That said, thanks to crowdfunding and the never-ending spirit of the Broken Lizard comedy team, the sequel was made and even succeeded as far as box office was concerned. But how about the movie? Was it a long-awaited disappointment, or a new, fun chapter for this team of Vermont Highway Patrolmen?

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Film:

Set a few years after the first film, Super Troopers 2 starts out by getting the gang back together. Having been fired from their jobs as Spurbury Police officers, the guys (Jay Chandrasekhar, Steve Lemme, Paul Soter, Kevin Heffernan, and Erik Stolkhanske) have all seemingly moved on with their lives. That is until their former boss, Captain O’Hagen (Brian Cox, still just as game as the rest of the cast), arrives with a way to put them back in uniform as Vermont State Troopers. This time they’ll be working to monitor activity, while a part of Canada is incorporated into the U.S., due to a recent discovery. It’s all an elaborate way of getting these guys back for more zany antics as troopers who like to have fun.

I’ve had an odd history with Broken Lizard, as I think the guys are all genuinely funny, even though it takes me a while to come around to their films. Something about the editing always makes me more comfortable finding an appreciation upon second or third viewings. The strange thing is that I seem to have been the one person that liked Club Dread on the first viewing. Regardless, Super Troopers was a film that worked better for me in pieces, but it grew on me. This sequel feels about the same.

And that’s the good thing, despite my apprehension to a sequel like this, the film does a decent job of charting new territory while layering in some retreads of what everyone loved in the first. It doesn’t feel lazy, even with the original being familiar enough, but not a favorite of mind. Perhaps other Super Trooper fans feel different, but given the nature of these actors (I’ll talk more about this in the special features section), and the fans that love them, it seems clear that good-nature pranks, one-liners, and lots of silliness is all that was desired and seemingly delivered upon.

Mileage will vary for any viewer, but the comedy is fine. Chandrasekhar has undoubtedly grown as a director, which leads to some visually neat comedic bits. A lot of familiar faces pop up in supporting roles or cameos, mainly foils for our heroes or unwitting victims of pranks, and it goes over well enough. There’s only so much to say, as Super Troopers 2 has little to say about anything. It exists as an extension of a world people spent the last 17 years loving. That it works as well as it does is a testament to the joy Broken Lizard still has for playing these characters.

 

Video:

Encoding: MPEG-4 AVC

Resolution: 1080p

Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1

Clarity/Detail: Super Troopers 2 looks pretty good on Blu-ray, as detail shines through as we take in so much of the outdoors of Canada, as well as some of the indoor scenes. Shot digitally, the film does a fine job of capturing plenty of detail in the costumes and settings. Even if they aren’t better comedies, Broken Lizard have been making better-looking films in the years since their early efforts, and it shows with this transfer.

Depth: Good spacing seen throughout this film. Again, the use of many outdoor locations really helps in selling the depth of field.

Black Levels: Black levels are deep and effective. No signs of crush and the numerous outdoor scenes are benefited by a good handle on shadows and other darker elements.

Color Reproduction: This is a bright film with a lot of warm and natural colors. It all works in making the colors, in general, stand out as needed.

Flesh Tones: Facial textures register strongly here. You get some close-ups that do their job to reflect the actors properly. A good amount of detail fairs very well, especially in showing the very important mustaches.

Noise/Artifacts: This disc is clean.

 

Audio:

Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, English Descriptive Audio 5.1, French and Spanish Dolby Surround

Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish

Dynamics: The 5.1 lossless track does plenty to make for an enjoyable auditory experience. Hearing the various atmospheric sounds in the film and heavy play from all the dialogue and more boisterous moments involving this film’s version of action is good for what you need at home.

Low-Frequency Extension: The LFE channel doesn’t get a whole lot of play, but subtle moments track well enough and some significant sequences involving an explosion and some of the bigger moments on the soundtrack, such as the whole opening sequence.

Surround Sound Presentation: The balance is solid here. There is an emphasis on the center and front channels, though the rear channels do get a chance to add when needed.

Dialogue Reproduction: Everyone is loud and clear.

 

Extras:

It’s a shame the team couldn’t get together for an awesome commentary track, but at least the behind-the-scenes look is pretty worthwhile.

Features Include:

  • (making) Super Troopers 2 (HD, 39:50) – This is a good look at both the making of the film and the effort that went into the crowdfunding campaign to make it possible. What becomes clear is just how well-meaning these guys are in wanting to do something for the fans. Given the fans that we hear from, it’s a nice state of affairs as far as the people making this movie and the people inclined to enjoy it. This is a worthwhile extra.
  • Extended/Deleted Scenes (HD, 19:40)
  • Kevin Heffernan: Method Actor (HD, 1:50) – Enjoy more of Heffernan/Farva’s antics.
  • Theatrical Trailers (HD, 3:24)
  • DVD Copy of the Film
  • Digital HD Copy of the Film

 

Summary:

I would wager to say most Super Trooper superfans are happy with this movie. If not, feel free to leave a comment, but it appears as if Broken Lizard found the right way to bring these characters back and recreate the energy that turned the first film into a cult favorite. Even if this sequel doesn’t achieve the same heights, the Blu-ray features a solid technical presentation and some worthwhile extras. Fan or not, this is a decent comedy made for having a good time.

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Writer/Reviewer, Film Lover, Podcaster, Video Game Player, Comic Book Reader, Disc Golfer & a Lefty. There are too many films, TV, books, etc. for me to list as favorites, but I can assure that the amount film knowledge within my noggin is ridiculous, though I am always open to learning more. You can follow me on Twitter @AaronsPS4, see what else I am up to at TheCodeIsZeek.com & check out my podcast, Out Now with Aaron and Abe, on iTunes.

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