Featured In Issue 133, July/August 2008

WSR Score3.5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
New Line Home Entertainment
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Language and some sexual content
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Two BD-25 Discs
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Kent Alterman
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DTS HD Lossless 7.1
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Jackie Moon (Ferrell) is the owner, coach, and star player of the Flint Michigan Tropics, a Semi-Pro team in the American Basketball Association (ABA). In 1976, with the ABA teetering on the brink of oblivion, the NBA agrees to absorb the ABA's top four teams prior to the associations' demise, which is scheduled for the end of the season. Jackie wants desperately to play in the NBA, but the Tropics are the worst team in the league. Jackie trades a washing machine to another ABA team for a player named Monix (Harrelson), who was a one-time NBA benchwarmer, in hopes of catapulting his rag-tag team of has-beens to fourth place in the ABA. (Stacey Pendry)

The only special features on Disc One of this two-disc set are previews and an option to view either the unrated or theatrical version of the film. Disc Two includes five deleted scenes; three improvisational scenes; the following featurettes: A Short Story Of The ABA (seven minutes), Re-Creating The ABA (13 minutes), Love Me Sexy—The Story Behind A One Hit Wonder (five minutes), Bill Walton Visits The Set (three minutes), Four Days In Flint (six minutes), and The Man Behind Semi-Pro (24 minutes); a music video Love Me Sexy (two minutes); two spoof interviews by Dick Pepperfield: Ball Girls (one minute) and Pancakes And Camels (one minutes); additional trailers and a Jackie Moon's Super Agility Trainer game.

The anamorphically enhanced 2.32:1 DVD shows solid black levels with good shadow delineation, which creates a believable sense of depth and dimensionality to the picture. Resolution is delivered fairly well, although it does have a somewhat soft appearance, especially on medium and longer shots. Fleshtones have a reddish hue, although it isn't overly distracting. Contrast is balanced nicely, but whites bloom on occasion. There are also times, especially under the bright lights on court, when the picture looks flat. Edge enhancement isn't a problem, but pixel breakup can be noticed from time to time. The H.264 AVC-encoded Blu-ray Disc shows very good resolution, but the finest details appear soft. Some noise can be recognized in flat fields of color, and fleshtones appear somewhat washed out, but black levels are deep and shadow detail is nicely defined. Colors aren't as well saturated as in the better releases, but the color scheme matches the timeframe nicely. (Danny Richelieu)

The Dolby® Digital Surround EX™ 5.1-channel soundtrack is focused heavily on the front three screen channels, with a very basic use of the surround channels. Subtle atmospheric effects can be delivered well in the surrounds, but the front channels, which are generally mixed at higher relative levels, often dominate them. The front stage is mixed very well, though, keeping the listening space engaged. Dynamic range and fidelity are both impressive. Dialogue generally sounds natural, but there are times when it is too obviously ADR produced. Minor clipping distortion can be heard at times as well. The added matrix-derived center surround channel provides better surround integration, with good imaging across the back stage. The Blu-ray Disc's lossless DTS-HD Master Audio™ 7.1-channel soundtrack features fantastic fidelity with broad dynamic range, but the mix is still inconsistent. The front stage features very solid phantom imaging, but it is rare everywhere else. ADR can also be too obvious in this version. (Danny Richelieu)