Goon appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.78:1 on this single-sided, dual-layered DVD; the image has been enhanced for 16X9 televisions. For SD-DVD, this picture looked pretty good.
Sharpness usually appeared fairly accurate and detailed. Some wide shots occasionally looked a smidgen soft, but most of the flick came across as distinctive and concise. Moiré effects and jagged edges presented no concerns, and edge haloes remained absent. No print flaws materialized; the film remained clean and fresh.
In terms of colors, the flick went with a moderately subdued set of tones. Hues stayed on the natural side, with a mild golden feel to things. Within those parameters, the tones looked fine. Blacks were dark and firm, and shadows looked concise; low-light sequences demonstrated appropriate clarity. This was one of the better SD-DVD images I’ve seen in a while.
As for the film’s Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack, it offered a surprisingly involving affair, mainly due to the hockey scenes. Those used the surrounds for involving crowd noise and also managed to engage us in the sports action well. The whole package combined nicely and created a solid sense of setting.
Audio quality appeared fine. Dialogue was consistently warm and natural, and speech displayed no concerns related to edginess or intelligibility. Effects were clean and distinct – the hockey hits delivered strong bass - while music showed nice pep and dimensionality. The audio added a lot to the film.
Goon comes with a fairly broad roster of extras. We open with an audio commentary from director Michael Dowse and co-writer/actor Jay Baruchel. Both sit together for this running, screen-specific look at cast and performances, sets and locations, music, production design, shooting the hockey as well as training, story/characters, editing, budgetary concerns, and some other areas.
Broad and goofy, this commentary won’t work for sensitive ears. Of course, if you’re easily offended, you probably didn’t make it through Goon anyway, but this track might earn the award as the most profane I’ve heard. It still manages to pack in a fair amount of info along the way, so as crass as it can be, it brings us enough material to keep us with it.
An interactive piece called Power Play Mode lets you access short featurettes as the movie runs. If you prefer – as I did – you can also check out these 40 clips in the “Special Features” domain either individually or via one big 44-minute, 53-second package.
Across these, we mostly get a series of behind the scenes snippets. A few comments pop up as well; we see quick interview notes from Baruchel and actors Seann William Scott, Nicholas Campbell, and Marc-André Grondin. These remarks give us a little information about characters, story and shooting the hockey, but the footage from the set dominates.
Those elements are fun to see. We get good glimpses of the production and can check out different aspects of the shoot. The occasional interview snippets flesh out the “Power Play Mode” well and make it a useful addition, though I’d definitely recommend viewing it solo and not alongside the movie; there are so many clips that they’d constantly interrupt the film and become a chore to watch.
Six Deleted Scenes go for a total of nine minutes, three seconds. These expand supporting characters, so we see more of Doug’s family, Ryan and the hockey team. They’re actually pretty good, and they might’ve worked fine in the final cut; it probably would’ve been nice to get the explanation for why Doug wears figure skates to his tryout, and the others are enjoyable as well.
Outtakes/Blooper Reel lasts five minutes, 35 seconds. I hoped the “outtakes” side of things meant a fair number of alternate lines and we did get some, but the compilation mostly focused on the usual goofs and giggles. Still, we see enough improv moments to make the reel worth a look.
After this we get an Interview with Seann William Scott and Jay Baruchel. It fills 29 minutes, 31 seconds with their comments about characters and story, their childhood experiences with hockey, inspirations and influences for the movie, cast and performances, shooting the hockey/fight scenes, and a few other thoughts. Both interact well and give us some nice notes about the film.
Under HDNet: A Look at Goon, we discover a four-minute, 52-second promotional piece with notes from Scott and Baruchel. Essentially this gives us an abbreviated version of the longer interview, so there’s no reason to it if you already saw the latter.
Goalie Audition occupies five minutes, 19 seconds as it shows tryouts. Or one tryout, I should say, as we just see Jonathan Cherry, the actor who got the role as the goalie. It’s a fun addition.
Next we see Fighting 101. This featurette runs three minutes, 46 seconds and gives us Baruchel in character. He offers a quick – and crude – tutorial about methods of hockey beatdowns. While insubstantial and silly, it offers amusement.
Within Hockey Cards, we get still frame materials. As expected, we see fake trading cards for 12 of the film’s characters. These don’t restrict themselves to players, and that makes them a bit more creative.
The disc opens with ads for Tim and Eric’s Billion Dollar Movie, God Bless America and The Hunter. These pop under Also from Magnolia Entertainment as well, and we also get two trailers for Goon.
Despite its heavy debt to Slap Shot, Goon stands on its own as an enjoyable hockey-related comedy. Yeah, it lacks clear direction much of the time, but it boasts enough charm and humor to make it work. The DVD offers pretty good picture and audio along with a nice little set of supplements. Fans of hard-edged, profane comedies should enjoy this one.