Come on! Let’s be serious here! I initially only saw this movie for two main reasons. First, I had to check out Jennifer Aniston’s banging stripper body (tell me who didn’t) and second, when that boy starts singing “Don’t Go Chasing Waterfalls” in the RV at the end of the film’s theatrical trailer, he had me at hello. I wanted to see more of that! So with that being said and admitted, I flung myself whole-heartedly into the press screening of We’re The Millers this past August. With an all-star cast consisting of Jason Sudeikis, Jennifer Aniston, Emma Roberts, Will Poulter, Ed Helms, Kathryn Hahn, Nick Offerman and more, who could possibly resist a screening of this (or a Blu-ray in this case) anyway? Please people, that was a rhetorical question. Now that we have that out of the way let’s momentarily cut the stress cords of life (wish I could do that permanently) and take a few minutes to chat about the lighthearted comedy We’re The Millers…arriving on Blu-ray and DVD everywhere November 19th.
So during my initial research in the summer it seems that We’re The Millers has been in development for quite some time dating as far back as 2006. I guess that’s why my screenwriting instructor in college warned us not to put any current events or modern day jokes into our screenplays as I have found out in my amateur career, scripts can and do get stuck in development hell for quite some time. Also, interesting to note, both Steve Buscemi and Will Arnett were once upon a time attached this too. However, in 2012 with names such as Aniston and Sudeikis, things finally came back to life under director Rawson Marshall Thurber, most notably known for DodgeBall: A True Underdog Story.
And I have to say..what a fun time I had with We’re The Millers when I saw it theatrically. It’s road trip comedy cliche stripped down in its simplest form, but what a blast it is to see it all unfold…on the road…even for a second time on the Blu-ray forma And while we are at it…what a refreshing experience to see it giving an R-rating instead of the dumb downed PG-13 version this could have easily been marketed and transformed into for wider audiences. Like Twizzlers do to mouths, that alone makes me happy.
So let’s see…we have four down on their luck mundane everyday people. We have drug dealer David (Sudeikis) who’s in with the wrong crowd and has to unwillingly accept a job from a wealthy drug lord, Brad Gurdlinger (Helms), to bring back A LOT of marijuana back from Mexico and IF he succeeds…he’s guaranteed a $100,000 paycheck. But there’s that pesky problem! How do you go unnoticed coming back across the border with an RV full of marijuana? Ahoy. A solution is found! Why not pose as an all-American yuppie family? Yes! That’s sure to work! So David goes on to recruit two local kids, a runaway teenage girl (Roberts) and a virgin 18-year old boy (Poulter) and oh why not…a stripper mom (Aniston)…hence forth they are known as the Millers…”in case anyone asks.”
Sounds like a great plan above, huh? Of course it is! But it’s not long until things start to quickly unravel. Just because they are posing as a family doesn’t mean they don’t fight like a real family too. In addition to calling this a road trip comedy one can almost calling this a coming-of-age story too as both Mr. and Mrs. Miller are inexperienced in the raising kids department and don’t really even know what they are missing out on until this faithful journey shows them for lack of a better term and vice versa for the kids who don’t know what it’s like to have a great family life and are still coming to grip with the birds and the bees. So let the bickering pursue as what doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger or in our case of family matters…only brings you closer together (hint, hint). However, family drama aside…things go quite awry for the Millers when they discover they’re in over their heads with the wrong Mexicans and a serious case of double-crossing. Now that’s not to say things get too serious here, quite the contrary…for argument’s sake let’s just say the hilarious stakes get raised even more. Yeah. I like the sound of that. We’ll roll with that.
But what’s a couple to do when the spark is dull in the bedroom? I know! Swing! Enter the Fitzgeralds. Don (Offerman) and Edie Fitzgerald (Hahn) really know how to heat things up and what’s that…bring more laughs in? Of course they do! That’s safe to say. I swear, ever since seeing the comedic genius that is Offerman in The Kings of Summer, I think I want this guy in every comedy now. He’s my new Ken Jeong. How about that? Hear that Michael Bay? You want this guy in Transformers! I won’t ruin any surprises here. You’ll want the Fitzgerald family in every possible scene. Trust me on that one.
And don’t get me wrong, like every GOOD Rated-R comedy, there’s some raunchiness and excessive swearing, but without it…ah…why even bother? I want the real deal. Watch this after the kiddies fall asleep. This ain’t no daycare. And who says rude, crude and heartwarming can’t harmoniously exist together? Why sugarcoat it? This isn’t The Internship, this is the real deal. We’re The Millers is a joyride I plan on going on again in future Blu-ray watchings. It’s not even close to the second coming of The Hangover, but it’s one of the best all-star comedies of this summer…at least for me as I liked it better than This Is The End, but again…that’s just me. All I know is that Jennifer Aniston still has it. I don’t know for how long, but she still has it. Although, the real stars here are Sudeikis, Poulter and Offerman. I’m just saying.
This AVC MPEG-4 1080p encoded transfer is just what you can expect as of late from a studio hitting grand slams this year with their Blu-ray releases, Warner Bros. Presented in an aspect ratio of 2.40:1 things look near perfect here for this hilarious drug smuggling comedy. No expenses are spared here and it shows. However, I always felt the color pallet of We’re The Millers has a distinguished kind of look to it. I can’t really put my fingers on it truly other than saying it’s tonal qualities are unique. The skin tones all look good with pale and contrasting complexions among the actors (like Roberts to Aniston for example). Pores and fine detail are intact. Even the black levels all look deep and inky throughout. You really can’t find much in the way of fault with this one. However, you already know that as a Blu-ray aficionado all comedies nowadays pretty much are going to look perfect in HD, don’t you? There are no noticeable distractions like noise, artifacts or blemishes in the print. This is truly just one of those light-hearted R-rated comedies for you to enjoy over and over on the Blu-ray format.
Things follow the expected trend here with Warner Bros. and their delivery of a pretty powerful DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround track. Most people tend to expect dialogue heavy presentations when it comes to comedies, and that’s the case here as well, but you can also expect some pretty exciting dynamics and fusion here happening in the rear speakers. I was quite pleased and surprised with the robustness of the sound field here. The LFE comes alive in the key moments where its needed and ambient effects liven up your viewing experience. I was not expecting this level of satisfaction so while a score of 4.5 may be blasphemous for a Blu-ray comedy release I’ll chalk it up to my escalated level of fervor and excitement I felt while watching this one at home and enjoying it even more because I could finally hear all the little nuances and jokes clearly and distinguishably. Remember, it’s the little things that matter (insert smiley face). Also selectable from the disc’s menu are choices for French, Portuguese and Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 as well as English, French, Spanish and Portuguese subtitles.
While there doesn’t look like much listed on the back of the We’re The Millers box art in terms of special features, it’s the little things that count here. And by that I’m talking about the fact that instead of the usual large robust making of features we are accustomed to on modern day Blu-ray releases we get served with a bunch of broken out little ones, which quite honestly is to be expected with a comedic release. There’s nothing wrong with it and nothing but a good time to be had here. So let’s stop wasting precious time and break it down for you all here. Ready?!
Extended Cut of the Film (HD, 119 mins.) – As far as the Blu-ray disc is concerned, via the main menu selections when you hit Play you are presented with an option to watch either the Extended Cut or Theatrical Cut of the film. Just an FYI…the theatrical one is selected by default so highlight accordingly and choose carefully. And for all of you who are wondering the Extended Cut is eight minutes longer than the theatrical one and really just has longer scenes in it. I would watch it over the theatrical one given a choice, but that’s just me of course.
Miller’s Unleashed – Outtakes Overload (HD, 7:37) – Want to watch the cast try not to laugh and flub their lines? Well, you come to the right place here complete with interviews from the cast about improvisation. Come on! It’s funny!
Behind The Scenes: Stories From The Road – The below seven featurettes make up this titled segment, which includes a variety of topics and situations. You have to tackle these individually. There is no play all choice. I will say that Jennifer looks incredible in these interviews against the blue cloud backdrop. Let’s take a closer look, shall we?
- Extreme Aniston (HD, 2:19) – This one is obviously about the reason we are all here, the strip dancing of Jennifer Aniston!
- The Miller Makeovers (HD, 3:43) – Costumer Shay Cunliffe gives a behind-the-scenes look at the characters and their costumes.
- Road Trippin’ With The Millers (HD, 2:47) – This one takes a look at all the filming within the RV and the incredible amount of green screen used.
- Rollin’ In The RV (HD, 1:33) – You didn’t have enough of the RV yet? Well, you’re in luck here!
- Don’t Suck Venom (HD, 2:13) – This one covers probably the most raunchiest part of the film, but what a great part it is. LOL. You knew this one was coming as soon as they brought that fruit on the RV, didn’t you?
- Getting Out Of A Sticky Situation (HD, 2:42) – Luis Guzman’s in the flick is looked at a little more closely here. I won’t go into detail to avoid any spoilers. All I will say is it’s about a cop and trying to get out of trouble. There! Enough said! And oh yeah…it is a hilarious scene.
- I Am Pablo Chacon (HD, 1:37) – This one is kind of stupid if you asked me and you did! Want to see the cast say they are Pablo Chacon? Well if you ever do, you know where to look now.
Behind The Scenes: Livin’ It Up With Brad (HD, 3:46) – This one takes a closer look at Ed Helm’s hilarious drug dealing character. He steals every scene he’s in here in my opinion.
Behind The Scenes: When Paranoia Sets In (HD, 3:16) – This one through interviews asks the plausible question that maybe this film was just a front for smuggling drugs. LOL.
Gags and More Outtakes (HD, 3:01) – For those of you who just can’t get enough of these without the interviews this time around.
Deleted Scenes (HD, 16:18) – Here we are treated to eight long deleted and extended scenes for anyone that cares. My care-o-meter usually registers zero with these kind of extras unless it adds something truly valuable to the story…then I curse at the screen asking why it’s not there in the feature cut in the first place. LOL. I did enjoy the alternate take on the Guzman scene including Helm singing “Don’t Go Chasing Waterfalls” on a Whaletone piano. Haha. These maybe my favorite deleted scenes of all time.
UltraViolet Digital Copy (HD, 110 mins.) – It’s not iTunes compatible, but do with you will with it. It’s supposed to be HD. I have it installed through Flixster on my iPad Air and it plays back and downloads in SD so really not sure how to obtain the true HD capabilities of this redeemable extra. And oh yeah…this is the theatrical version of the film here just in case you were wondering.
Here’s the deal. When I first saw the trailer for this I wasn’t expecting much. I went in just like everyone else did to see that boy rap in the RV and Jennifer strip. What I wasn’t expecting was how much I would love the lighthearted comedy flick even after three viewings now. That says a lot to me. What does it say to you? I think it says that you SHOULD check We’re The Millers out on Blu-ray today. It will give you much needed chuckles and is good for your soul just like chicken soup. What do you say? Bring home We’re The Millers today by ordering it here.