Wild Hogs appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.35:1 on this single-sided, double-layered DVD; the image has been enhanced for 16X9 televisions. No real concerns cropped up in this positive presentation.
Sharpness was good. A little edge enhancement meant some wide shots came across as a bit soft, but those instances seemed rare. Most of the flick was reasonably well-defined and accurate. No issues with jagged edges or shimmering occurred, though, and sources flaws remained absent.
The film went with a natural palette. The hues looked accurate and concise, as the colors consistently appeared clean and distinct. Blacks were good, and shadows seemed clear and concise. Overall, the transfer appeared more than satisfactory.
The Dolby Digital 5.1 audio of Wild Hogs also worked well. With all the road scenes, the soundfield opened up nicely. Bikes and other vehicles zipped around the spectrum well and created a fine sense of the highway settings. Otherwise we got general ambience that formed the places in a pleasing manner. The surrounds added good info to the mix; they weren’t particularly active much of the time, but they connected with the forward speakers to a good degree.
Audio quality was strong. Speech always remained natural and concise, and the score showed solid range and clarity. Songs followed suit, while effects also came across as clean and accurate. They displayed punch when necessary and always seemed well represented. This was a perfectly good mix.
Hogs comes with a few extras. We begin with an audio commentary from director Walt Becker and writer Brad Copeland. Both sit together for this running, screen-specific chat. We learn about what brought them onto the project, locations and sets, cast and performances, song choices, stunts, motorcycle-related topics, and a few other production notes.
Becker and Copeland provide a competent but fairly banal commentary. They tell us some good details, most of which connect to the actors and their work. However, we get a lot of praise for all involved and the track never becomes terribly involving. There’s enough here to keep fans interested, but the commentary never becomes very stimulating.
Two featurettes follow. Bikes, Brawls and Burning Bars: The Making of Wild Hogs goes for 16 minutes, 18 seconds as it mixes movie clips, behind the scenes bits and interviews. We hear from Becker, Copeland, stunt coordinator Jack Gill, and actors John Travolta, William H. Macy, Tim Allen, and Martin Lawrence. We learn what attracted Becker to the project, issues related to the cast and performances, motorcycle-related subjects such as actor training, improvisation, stunts, action and general notes.
Though “Bikes” comes with some of the expected happy talk, it does manage to deliver a mix of good notes. I like the discussion of how they got the actors comfortable on their bikes, and it’s also amusing to see Ray Liotta’s intensity on the set. Don’t expect a stellar featurette, but “Bikes” is pretty good.
Next comes How to Get Your Wife to Let You Buy a Motorcycle. In this two-minute and 48-second clip, Gill offers some tips. This mostly acts as a conglomeration of movie clips and has little value beyond cuteness.
Two Deleted Scenes and an Alternate Ending fill a total of four minutes, eight seconds. In addition to the “Ending” (1:34), we get “Acute Molar Abscess” (1:15) and “Chili Pepper Abuse” (1:19). “Molar” just offers a minor extension of the scene in Doug’s office, while “Abuse” provides a short intro to a confrontation at the Madrid chili festival. Neither are problematic, but they’re pretty extraneous.
At least they’re better than the “Alternate Ending”. Frankly, it’s dreadful. It extends an already poor running gag and would have completed the flick on a truly idiotic note.
The first two can be viewed with or without commentary from Becker and Copeland. They offer some basic notes about the segments and let us know why they cut them. I have no idea why they couldn’t fine the 79 seconds to discuss “Abuse”, though.
A collection of Outtakes runs two minutes, 34 seconds. These feature the usual fooling around moments and various mistakes. None of them are more interesting than usual despite the presence of various comedians on the set.
A few ads open the DVD. We find promos for The Nightmare Before Christmas 3-D, The Invisible and The Santa Clause 3. These also appear in the Sneal Peeks area along with clips for Grey’s Anatomy: The Complete Third Season, ABC Family programming and Ugly Betty: Season One. No trailer for Hogs appears on the disc.
Wild Hogs provides completely mediocre entertainment. Given my insanely low expectations for the film, that comes as something of an accomplishment; I feared it’d be a much crummier flick. It’s not a good movie, but it could’ve been significantly worse. The DVD offers very good picture and audio as well as a decent collection of extras. Though more enjoyable than I expected, I still think Hogs is forgettable at best. I can’t recommend this DVD to anyone who doesn’t already know they love the film.