Daltry Calhoun

Cover and Menu: 9/10
The cover almost looks like it’s a comedy about a goofy guy running for some kind of political office, which is inaccurate. Other than that I like it. It’s simple and Johnny Knoxville ain’t bad to glace at as I sift through DVD’s on the shelf. The menus are all done in the spirit of the movie, fun and colorful. With that ever-so-cute golf theme you can’t go wrong, now can ya?

Special Features: 8/10

  • Bloopers – Messing up is a fine art when you are being paid the big bucks. See the stutters and giggles that must make a director cringe every time they have to say “cut” because of someone forgets their lines or gets their tongue twisted.
  • Deleted Scenes – Nothing here that needed to be in the movie. You do get to hear the writer, director, and Mr. Tarantino talk about why they were cut, which is pretty cool.
  • Commentary – This is a director and writer combo who simply love making movies. You can tell from their discussions that they are totally professional women who truly love the art of making films.
  • The Making Of Daltry Calhoun Featurette – A very good behind the scenes feature that has interviews with the cast and crew, including Juliette Lewis and Johnny Knoxville, the director, the writer, and even Quentin does his part to pump up excitement for the movie and it’s creators.
  • Music Video – Whatever
  • The B Team Featurette – Three of the supporting roles were filled with some big name talent, but they arrived to the set two days after everyone else so they bonded together as the comic trio, “The B Team”. Juliette Lewis tells a short story of when they went to dinner in a local cafe and the waiter stared at her for a few seconds and then just said, “That’s Cool.” That becomes their catch phrase as they battle the A Team and their elitist leading role attitude hahaha It’s all just on the set fun for the actors.
  • Trailer – Since I knew nothing of this movie it was interesting to see how the trailer portrayed it. It pretty much tells the whole story and shows some of the funniest gags, of course. Trailers suck pretty much.

The Movie: 9/10
It’s rare for a DVD to hit our “Now Showing” display that I have never heard of what-so-ever. In this case, it was the smiling face of Johnny Knoxville that surprised me. Not a bad surprise, but then again, I did watch The Dukes of Hazzard a few weeks ago, not to mention I have endured many many hours of Jack Ass over the years. Being married to a guy can sometimes make you wonder just how screwed up the world really is. Even my mild mannered computer nerdish type seems to love watching Knoxville staple things to someone’s arse, or get sprayed in the face by a skunk, or any of the other charming stunts he pulled back in his MTV days. Mr. Jack Ass always has something to prove to me when it comes to his ability to carry a leading roll in a movie. Even if he’s dang cute and all. 🙂

I knew nothing about Daltry Calhoun, so I was braced for anything. In Grand Theft Parsons Knoxville did a good job of keeping the wild boy antics under control, but that story had some bizarre twists and turns so it was ok to be a bit over the top now and then. How would he do with a coming of age story about a teenage girl finding her father after fourteen years of being raised by a single mother? How would Knoxville be able to drown out my memories of him being covered in dog poop walking down a random street asking people for hugs.

Oh, haven’t you seen the TV show “Jack Ass”? It was the jumping off point for Johnny back in the days when being a complete idiot on MTV paid big bucks. Yes, he smeared himself in feces and walked down a city street asking for hugs. He even got a few. He has laid on the sidewalk still as death long enough for innocent standers by to call 911. He has ridden pieces of furniture being pulled down the road at high speeds until the furniture breaks apart leaving him tossing, turning, and scraping the pavement just short of serious injury. And let’s not forget he dared his friend to put a small match box car in a place no car should go, then sent him to the doctor’s office for an X-Ray just to see their reaction to finding a car in such a place. All of this with a huge smile on his face and belly laughs at each and every stunt.

So anyway, I don’t want to taint your view of Knoxville or this movie, but I feel an obligation to any of you out there who have the same reservations about his movie career to give it to you straight. Is Daltry Calhoun a good flick? Does Johnny Knoxville suck? Let me just say this, if you haven’t heard of Johnny Knoxville, this movie is a good place to start. If you have heard of him (Dukes of Hazzard does not count) this is a good time to see what he can do in the hands of a good writer, a good director, and an executive producer like Quentin Tarantino.

Daltry Calhoun is about a man turning his raggedy life around. It’s also about a young girl coming of age just when she discovers a father she never knew. Actually it’s got a lot of poignant themes and studies of relationships, heart break, loss, making mistakes, and finding love, but none of it comes of as heavy as it may sound. This is a comedy from start to finish. Trust me, you will laugh. If you don’t, you have a heart of dirt.

Knoxville is Calhoun, a business man in a small town who, after several years of great success in the seed and sod business, finds himself in a bit of a genetic jam. His sod seed causes mutations to form on the many golf courses he has made his fortune keeping green. While his own seed he sowed 14 years ago just moved into town and needs a father.

June, the teenage daughter is a gifted musician about to get an early audition to Julliard. Between finding her father, and dealing with growing pains, the sexy sweaty Australian grass scientist tempting her youthful curiosity, and so many other things pressing on her to break out of being a little girl and into being a young woman, she struggles to keep from falling apart. Daltry may not be the best father figure in the world, but he wants to try. They are a good pair, a daughter needing a father, and a man who needs to be needed.

There is one scene with June and the imported hot Australian dude that is particularly funny. She’s a bit tipsy questioning him about kissing, sex, and other such things. He’s a good guy fighting bad bad thoughts. It’s completely inoffensive and so well done that you feel both their anguish in a comedic way, and in a real life way.

It’s the kind of comedy the endears you to the characters because they are all, without exception, likeable people. They all have issues, but they just get on with life hoping for happiness, dealing with the sadness and heart breaks along the way. Each character and their dialogue is crafted in a way that is comic on the surface, but more complex and delicate underneath. Being set in the south we get the southern accents, the charm of small town life, and a dash of innocence tossed in for good measure. Those southern accents and twinge of backwardness doesn’t hide the universal truths underneath. Everyone needs somebody to love, to care for, and to watch over in one way or another.

I laughed, I cried a bit, and I completely lost track of Knoxville’s past endeavors. I look forward to more from him in the future. As long as he doesn’t smear anything on himself, or nail something to his leg, I’m cool with seeing him as a leading man again.

Value: 4/10
Ok, I really enjoyed this movie. The extras were good, and the box looks cool. So, I hate to complain about the price, but geez. $20-$24 for a little comedy film is just too dang high people. Give it to me for 10 and you can consider the cash sucked from my debit card. If you insist on charging more than cost of some good steaks, a bag of potatoes, and a loaf of bread, which I could feed my family with…you are gonna send me straight to Blockbuster to rent it for $3. Trust me on this one folks, it’s fun, it’s charming, it’s a totally pleasant surprise, but don’t let the big movie bastards charge you the price of a good meal to have it sit on your own personal shelf.

Overall Score 9/10