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Jake Szymanski
Zac Efron, Adam Devine, Anna Kendrick, Aubrey Plaza
Writing Credits:
Andrew Jay Cohen and Brendan O'Brien

Two hard-partying brothers place an online ad to find the perfect dates for their sister's Hawaiian wedding. Hoping for a wild getaway, the boys instead find themselves out-hustled by an uncontrollable duo.

Box Office:
Opening Weekend
$16,628,170 on 2,982 Screens.
Domestic Gross

Rated R

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
English DTS-HD MA 7.1
English Descriptive Audio 5.1
Spanish Dolby 5.1
French Dolby 5.1
Portuguese Dolby 5.1
Russian Dolby 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 99 min.
Price: $39.98
Release Date: 9/27/2016
• Audio Commentary with Director Jake Syzmanski
• 14 Deleted Scenes
• 16 Extended Scenes
• Alternate Storyline
• “Bits on Bits on Bits” Featurette
• Line-O-Rama
• Gag Reel
• Funny or Die Shorts
• Gallery
• Trailers and Previews
&bull. DVD Copy


Panasonic TC-P60VT60 60-Inch 1080p 600Hz 3D Smart Plasma HDTV; Sony STR-DG1200 7.1 Channel Receiver; Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player using HDMI outputs; Michael Green Revolution Cinema 6i Speakers (all five); Kenwood 1050SW 150-watt Subwoofer.


Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates [Blu-Ray] (2016)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (October 5, 2016)

In the same raunchy vein as Wedding Crashers, Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates offers a 2016 update on the nature of nuptials. When Jeanie (Sugar Lyn Beard) gets engaged to Eric (Sam Richardson), they plan a dream ceremony in Hawaii.

One issue: Jeanie’s brothers Mike (Adam Devine) and Dave (Zac Efron). They fancy themselves as the life of every party, but their shenanigans inevitably cause problems. To circumvent their natural tendencies, their father Burt (Stephen Root) issues a command: the brothers need to bring dates to the wedding, as he figures this will tamp down the boys’ wilder side.

Because neither Mike nor Dave know any women “respectable” enough for this occasion, they run an ad on Craigslist to find dates. This goes viral and leads to a TV talk show appearance.

Pals Tatiana (Aubrey Plaza) and Alice (Anna Kendrick) aren’t exactly “respectable”, but they want the free trip to Hawaii, so they attempt to fake it. We follow the wacky paths that ensue.

Moviegoers frequently find themselves let down by big-screen comedies, as these films’ trailers too often include all of the funny material. That concept left me skeptical as I went into Dates, mainly because I didn’t find anything especially amusing in its promos. If the ads presented the best footage and didn’t entertain, what hope did I have for the final product?

Not much, but I will admit that Dates generates the occasional minor laugh. Most of these come from the film’s two leading ladies, as Kendrick and Plaza account for the vast majority of the movie’s entertainment.

Alas, Plaza and Kendrick can’t carry the load all on their own, which leads to a lackluster experience. Efron seems decent but forgettable, while Devine annoys most of the time. He irritated me as a regular on Modern Family and he irritated me as part of the Pitch Perfect movies – why would that change here? It doesn’t, so Devine becomes a consistent drag on the film.

Director Jake Szymanski made his name as the creator of comedy shorts that ran on “Funny or Die”, and Dates represents his initial feature-length effort. Szymanski’s prior experience shows, as he finds himself unable to sustain a 99-minute narrative.

Really, Dates usually plays like a random collection of comedic bits. Szymanski can’t create a coherent story with characters who go anywhere, so the movie hops from one nutty moment to another without much to hold it together.

Again, some of these bits work, but the tedium sets in before too long. Dates tries to develop its characters as it goes, but this doesn't occur in a convincing way, as the episodic succession of semi-related comedy moments grows tiresome.

To be sure, I’ve seen less entertaining comedies than Dates, as its female stars give it occasional signs of life. Too much of the movie lacks creativity or humor, though, and that leaves this as fairly lame effort.

The Blu-ray Grades: Picture A-/ Audio B-/ Bonus B-

Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.39:1 on this Blu-Ray Disc. The movie boasted a terrific transfer.

Sharpness appeared strong. No problems emerged there, as the image displayed crisp and concise information. Jagged edges and moiré effects created no concerns, and edge haloes were absent. Print flaws remained absent, as we found no specks, marks or other issues.

Dates utilized a fairly stylized palette, with a clear teal/orange orientation. Though it seemed like a shame to semi-squander the tropical hues of Hawaii, the disc reproduced the tones well. Blacks seemed dark and dense, while shadows showed nice clarity. This became a very pleasing image.

As for the DTS-HD MA 7.1 soundtrack of Dates, it offered an experience typical of comedies, as the soundfield displayed an emphasis on the forward channels. Music showed nice stereo imaging and moved the songs and score to the back speakers in a minor manner.

Most of the effects tended toward environmental material, though a few sequences added some pep; for instance, party/bar scenes showed mild information around the room. Nonetheless, the majority of the mix stayed dialogue-intensive and without real theatrics.

Audio quality came across as good. Speech seemed natural and distinct, and I noticed no issues related to edginess or intelligibility. Music was reasonably full, with clear tones overall. Effects were accurate and concise, without distortion or other concerns. Nothing here excelled, but the audio was adequate for a comedy like this.

The Blu-ray comes with a fairly big roster of extras, and we open with an audio commentary< with director Jake Syzmanski. He provides a running, screen-specific look at story/character areas, editing and various gags, cast and performances, sets and locations, music and connected domains.

Syzmanski delivers a mostly engaging track, though it suffers from one potential deficit: a running joke in which the director interacts with recording engineer “Margie” – who sounds a lot like actor Mary Holland. She occasionally interrupts Syzmakski with increasing odd tangents. This is all a gag, of course, and one that doesn’t go anywhere.

Actually, I’ll admit the “Margie” thread amuses more than I expected, but it still creates a fairly pointless distraction. When Syzmanski discusses the movie, he does so well, as he gets into a nice array of details. Even with the “Margie” moments, the commentary offers a worthwhile piece.

14 Deleted Scenes run a total of 23 minutes, 48 seconds. A few of these offer semi-major sequences, including a bocce ball contest heavily referenced in the movie’s trailer but absent from the final cut. We also get somewhat better closure for the characters. Not a ton of amusement results, but the cut material does seem more substantial than expected.

16 Extended Scenes take up a total of 39 minutes, 12 seconds. Given that I didn’t find much humor in the final product, I didn’t expect much from the longer versions, and I got the tedium I anticipated. Scenes drag forever and fail to bring out anything interesting or amusing. Fans will be happy to see these clips, but the filmmakers were right to abbreviate all of them.

We also get an Alternate Storyline. Called the “Pig Sequence”, this seven-minute, 45-second piece offers a segment that revolves around a pig roast. Because the clips come from various points in the movie, the compilation feels disjointed – and not entertaining. “Pig” does allow the neglected Sam Richardson more screen time, but the segment doesn’t seem especially interesting.

With Bits on Bits on Bits, we find a six-minute, 21-second compilation. It shows a mix of short comedic moments cut from the final flick – they’re too short for true deleted scenes but offer minor trims. It’s more of the same sort of material we’ve already seen.

Next comes Line-O-Rama, a 10-minute, two-second collection. As usual, it offers a mix of alternate lines for scenes that appear in the movie. Like the rest of the unused material, not much amusement results.

A Gag Reel goes for five minutes, 27 seconds. Much of this revolves around the usual goofs and giggles, but a few improv moments give it some zing.

After this we get Funny or Die Shorts. We locate three segments: “Wedding Stories with the Cast” (2:10), “Adam Devine Has Sensitive Ears” (1:42) and “Zac Efron Can’t Stop Taking Selfies” (2:47). Across these, we hear from Syzmanski and actors Zac Efron, Anna Kendrick, Adam Devine, Aubrey Plaza, Mary Holland and Alice Wetterlund. They offer goofy comments in these not-especially-entertaining pieces.

Stills appear as part of a Gallery. With 40 images, it mixes shots from the movie and from the set. It ends up as a forgettable package of pics.

The disc opens with ads for Why Him? and Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie. We also get two trailers for Dates.

A second disc offers a DVD copy of Dates. It includes everything except for the extended scenes, “Line-O-Rama” and the Funny or Die shorts.

Though not totally devoid of laughs, Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates lacks much comedic value. Its female stars give us a few funny moments but most of the flick flops. The Blu-ray offers excellent visuals, adequate audio and a decent set of supplements. Dates offers a largely weak comedy.

Viewer Film Ratings: 2 Stars Number of Votes: 1
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