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Here Comes the Boom (a J!-ENT Blu-ray Disc Review)

January 28, 2013 by  



If you are a fan of Kevin James, may it be from television via “The King of Queens” or his past films, “Here Comes the Boom” is an exciting and hilarious film and his best one yet!  “Here Comes the Boom” is recommended!

Images courtesy of © 2012 Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

TITLE: Here Comes the Boom

FILM RELEASE: 2012

DURATION: 111 Minutes

BLU-RAY DISC INFORMATION: 1080p High Definition, 1:85:1, English 5.1 DTS-HD MA, French, Spanish, Thai 5.1 Dolby Digital, Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Chinese (Cantonese and Mandarin Traditional), Korean, Thai

COMPANY: Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

RATED: PG (Bouts of MMA Sports Violence, some Rude Humor and Language)

Release Date: February 5, 2013

Directed by Frank Coraci

Written by Kevin James, Allan Loeb, Rock Reuben

Executive Producer: Marty P. Ewing, Jack Giarraputo, Jeff Sussman

Producer: Todd Garner, KEvin James

Co-Producer: Aimee Keen, Rock Reuben

Associate Producer: Gino Falsetto

Music by Rupert Gregson-Williams

Cinematography by Phil Meheux

Edited by Scott Hill

Casting by Justine Baddeley, Kim Davis-Wagner

Production Design by Perry Andelin Blake

Art Direction by Alan Au

Set Decoration by Denise Pizzini

Costume Design by Hope Hanafin

Starring:

Kevin James as Scott Voss

Salma Hayek as Bell Flores

Henry Winkler as Marty Streb

Greg Germann as Principal Betcher

Joe Rogan as himself

Gary Valentine as Eric Boss

Charice as Malia

Bas Rutten as Niko

Reggie Lee as Mr. De La Cruz

Mark DellaGrotte as himself

Mookie Barker as Assistant Principal Elkins

Jackie Flynn as Joe Duffy

Nikki Tyler-Flynn as Mollie Streb

Former collegiate wrestler Scott Voss (Kevin James) is a 42-year-old, apathetic high school teacher. When budget cutbacks threaten to cancel some of the school’s programs and lay off its music teacher (Henry Winkler), Scott creates a scheme to raise money by moonlighting as a mixed martial arts fighter. Everyone thinks Scott is crazy – most of all the school nurse, Bella (Salma Hayek). In his quest, Scott gains something he never expected as he inspires his students and becomes a sensation that rallies the entire school.

From Frank Coraci, the director of “The Waterboy”, “The Wedding Singer” and “Click” comes the comedy “Here Comes the Boom”.

Written by actor Kevin James (“The King of Queens”, “Hitch”, “Paul Blart: Mall Cop”), Allan Loeb (“Just Go With It”, “21”, “The Switch”) and Rock Reuben (“Zookeeper”, “The King of Queens”), “Here Comes the Boom!” is a film inspired by Kevin James’ interest in Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) and watching the UFC, which he and fellow comedian Joe Rogan would watch years ago.

Wanting to create a comedy that ties in with the UFC, James brought in his friends, Joe Rogan (“The Fear Factor”, “NewsRadio”), former UFC Heavyweight Champion and “Inside MMA” host, Sebastian “Bas” Rutten and professional Muay Thai kickboxer and trainer Mark DellaGrotte (“The Ultimate Fighter 4”) and also a bunch of professional fighters to the film.

But alongside James, he brought in talent with Salma Hayek (“Frida”, “Desperado”, “Once Upon a Time in Mexico”), Henry Winkler (“Happy Days”, “The Waterboy”, “Night Shift”, “Click”), Greg Germann (“Ally McBeal”, “Bolt”, “Sweet November”), Charice (“Glee”, “Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakuel”) and brother Gary Valentine (“The King of Queens”, “Paul Blart: Mall Cop”, “I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry”).

And now “Here Comes the Boom” will be released on Blu-ray and DVD on February 2013.

“Here Comes the Boom” is a film that revolves around former collegiate wrestler turned biology teacher, Scott Voss (as portrayed by Kevin James).  Scott is apathetic as a teacher and doesn’t seem to care about teaching and his habits have put him on the wrong side of Principal Becher (portrayed by Greg Germann).

One day, Scott needs to get out of his crossing guard duty and goes to one teacher who can probably do it, Marty (portrayed by Henry Winkler), one of the most respected teachers in the school and the teacher of the dedicated music department.  That same day, Scott learns from Marty that his wife is pregnant and Scott congratulates him on being a father, which Marty asks for him to keep secret.

Meanwhile, Scott tries to find ways to go on a date with school nurse Bella Flores (portrayed by Salma Hayek) but she is not interested.  During a day at a teacher’s meeting, they are given bad news that the school will be doing some major cuts and will have to make unfortunate decisions. One of those decisions is to end the music department and lay off Marty, as the school does not have $48,000 to keep Marty as part of staff.

This leads to an argument between Scott Voss and Principal Becher  as Scott tries to defend Marty and his music department.  And because of the high emotion and the fact that Scott knows that Marty needs to keep his job because his wife is pregnant, Scott makes the announcement that he will raise the $48,000 (thinking that the other teachers would help him).

Meanwhile, in class, his student Malia (portrayed by Charice), who is one of Marty’s best music student and also one of Scott’s best students in his class, tells him that her father lost his cook and she may need to quit school.  Also, Scott’s brother Eric (portrayed by Gary Valentine) is having difficulty at home raising all his children, having a wife that constantly nags at him and his painting business is not doing so well  If anything is going well, it’s the fact that he loves cooking and watching cooking shows.

But not knowing how to raise that much money, he takes a job as a night instructor to help people get their citizenship but seeing that the check to teach is under $150, Scott worries that he may not be able to raise the money. Meanwhile, one of his students, Niko (portrayed by Bas Rutten)  approaches him for outside tutoring and Scott agrees.

But when he visits Bas’s home, he finds out that Bas is actually a former MMA fighter and while watching a UFC matchup with Niko and his friends, he learns that the loser of a UFC matchup wins an easy $10,000.  This leads to Scott thinking that if he took part in MMA fights, he can raise some quick money.

So, the following day, Scott goes to Niko’s to receive MMA training but Niko doesn’t want to see his 42-year-old teacher get killed, but Scott is insistent.  So, Niko wants to see Scott’s skills, books Scott to fight in an amateur MMA tournament and in the first fight, Scott gets beaten up with a single kick to the face.

Realizing that he made the wrong mistake, Scott goes to visit Marty’s home to tell him the bad news that he can’t raise the money.  But when Marty isn’t hope, he instead talks to his wife Molie (portrayed by Nikki Tyler-Flynn) and realizes that Marty never told his wife that he is being laid off from work and Scott knows he can’t tell his wife the bad news.  So, decides he will continue to raise the money.

So, Scott takes on his next MMA fight and this time Marty accompanies them.  And during the fight, Scott is getting beaten up pretty badly and while he is losing the majority of the matchup, he is able to withstand his opponents and stay on hs feet for the full three rounds.  But on the third round, Marty throws a desperation punch and knocks his opponent out and wins big money.  Scott’s success starts to become viral on YouTube, Bella Flores starts to get closer to him and he begins making more money to save Marty’s job.

This leads to more matches, more winnings (and losses) but Niko then schedules Scott to train with Muay Thai MMA trainer, Mark DellaGrotte, to train hard and prove he can take on fighters in the big leagues.  But is Scott even ready for the big leagues?

VIDEO:

“Here Comes the Boom” is presented in 1080p High Definition (1:85:1 aspect ratio).  The film looks fantastic on Blu-ray as close-ups show amazing detail of the characters faces.  Skin tones are natural, black levels are nice and deep but the film looks fantastic with no compression artifacts or any visual problems at all.

AUDIO & SUBTITLES:

“Here Comes the Boom” is presented in English 5.1 DTS-HD MA and French, Spanish and Thai 5.1 Dolby Digital.  The film is primarily dialogue driven with plenty of music, so front and center-channel driven.  Good use of surrounds for crowd ambiance, especially during Scott Voss’ entry to the ring.  Good use of surrounds during the more action intense sequences but for the most part, lossless audio is very good!

Subtitles are in English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Chinese (Cantonese and Mandarin Traditional), Korean and Thai.

SPECIAL FEATURES:

“Here Comes the Boom ” come with the following special features:

  • Deleted Scenes – Featuring a total of 17 deleted scenes including the original ending.
  • Gag-Reel – (2:26) A short gag reel featuring the outtakes from “Here Comes the Boom”.
  • Here Comes the Cast – (6:24) Director Frank Coraci and the cast talk about various cast members and working together.
  • Gino vs. Ritchie – (3:49) The Associate Producer vs. Kevin James Stand-in in a MMA sparring match.
  • Back to School – (4:27) Finding a closed down school in Boston to film “Here Comes the Boom”.
  • Learning How to Fight – (8:48) Joe Rogan and Kevin James discuss their interest in MMA a long time ago and how Kevin has been training for years.  Also how the trial and error of filming the fight scenes with real fighters and more.
  • Three Amigos – (5:39) A featurette of Henry Winkler, Bas Rutten and Mark BellaGrotte working together.
  • The Pros – (3:00) Interviews with the professional MMA fighters who starred in “Here Comes the Boom”.
  • Disco Street Fighting – (2:05) A training video by Nico (Bas Rutten) on “Disco Street Fighting”.

EXTRAS:

“Here Comes the Boom” comes with an Ultraviolet code which allows one to download the film to their computer and select Apple and Android devices and the ability to stream to computers, tablets or smartphones.

After the disappointing “Paul Blart: Mall Cop”, I have to admit that I was not sure if I wanted to see “Here Comes the Boom”, that is until I reminded myself of the many chances I have given Adam Sandler films and realized that actor Kevin Smith is part of the same crew of actor/comedians and you have to give them the benefit of the doubt.  But also, you have Frank Coraci as director, and so I figured that I should give the film a chance.

And after watching Smith’s latest film “Here Comes the Boom”, I have to say that I enjoyed this film a lot!

A film about an overweight man having to compete in the UFC, I’m sure is going to be a source of laughs for a lot of people but for this film, what makes it work is the fact that Kevin James is a big fan and follower of mixed martial arts (MMA) and the UFC.  He has trained not to fight but trained in MMA for his workout in the past several years and for this role, he dedicated himself to a regiment to get fit.

While we are not going to see anything drastic such as Tom Hanks “Castaway” of seeing a man with pounds transform to a rail thin individual, Kevin Smith is seen to go through some changes within the body and eventually see some muscle definition.

You also get a cast of unlikely “three amigos” joining in on the film with “Happy Days” actor Henry Winkler being put together with the loud and talkative former UFC heavyweight champion fighter Bas Rutten and the famous Boston Muay Thai trainer Mark DellaGrotte.  You really don’t know what to expect when you have these three as part of Team Scott Voss and suffice to say, hilarity ensues from the moment this film starts to the way it ends.

Add in the beautiful Salma Hayek and the singer with the beautiful voice, Charice and you have an entertaining action/comedy film.

While not exactly a Rocky-style of film, as a viewer, whether or not you enjoy MMA or not, you sympathize with the character of Scott Voss, the teacher and underdog who is doing all he can to rescue the music program at his school and his friend, Marty’s job.   But it’s that friendship that is developed in the storyline that ultimately becomes entertaining.

Henry Winkler as Marty, the timid musician who is softspoken but tries to help Scott in unusual ways, Niko who is trying to become a US citizen but also a bit jealous that Scott is getting a chance to fight in the UFC and his career ended after a significant injury and Mark DellaGrotte who puts Scott through a test by sicking three of his best fighters to see if Scott deserves to be trained.

The fight choreography is fantastic and you actually learn through the special features that some of these fighters that had to fight against Scott are still competing in the UFC and it’s not easy to train a fighter to pull their punches, because it works against their training.  So, actor Kevin James took a pounding in several scenes and he also dished it back as well against the fighters in the film.

But for the most part, everything comes together and I have to say that it’s Kevin James best film yet!  And it helps when the actor is enthusiastic and knowledgeable about the subject, and in this case, mixed martial arts.

As for the Blu-ray release, picture quality and lossless audio is fantastic.  There are are good amount of special features included and for the most part, a solid Blu-ray release overall.

If you are a fan of Kevin James, may it be from television via “The King of Queens” or his past films, “Here Comes the Boom” is an exciting and hilarious film and his best one yet!  “Here Comes the Boom” is recommended!

 






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