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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Rules For Men
Rules For Men
Ventura
List Price: Unknown [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Chuck Arrington | posted July 1, 2001 | E-mail the Author
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RULES FOR MEN

Synopsis:

Firstly, let me start by saying, there's a lot going on in this movie. It's a comedy, that's trying to be a drama, that's working overtime to be titillating. In the end it's a mediocre film that has a couple of laughs but very little substance. Rules for Men is one man's attempt to identify the 10 rules of life that will forever earn you a place in the bed of any woman you choose…My thoughts exactly. Anyway, Michael vigilante is an accomplished attorney with his own law firm with Jackie "The Jokeman" Martling as his eternally cussin' partner. Vigilante is a self-starter who's built up enough hype about himself to be forever regarded as a "nudist". Now, he's not a fun-loving-volleyball-in-the-buff kind of guy in as much as a redefiner of the term nude. Evidently, in his "rules", being nude is not being naked in as much as it means being cool. Why didn't he just say cool? It's beyond me. Anyway, in between a threesome with lesbians (which he wholly endorses) countless trysts with the unnamed and dinner with the folks, he's trying to win a case and in the interim, make it with the presiding judge as well. Needless to say, Michael has more than his hands full!

Audio/Video:

The audio for the film is billed as a DD2.0 platform. What's actually presented is a big fat blaringly bad mono presentation. The music used in the film climbs all over the audio and at times obscures the dialogue. There are no subtitles so; it makes deciphering the information a lot like lip reading. In addition, all the looping and edited dialogue cuts are louder than the dialogue filmed during the actual scene. Not the worst but pretty bad. The palette of color used in the film is equally drab and faded. Additionally, the image is very grainy. So much so that at times, it's more grain than actual visual image. The transfer is a full frame presentation.

The DVD

Rules for Men is an attempt at humor that falls squarely on its face. The few moments of humor come from Vigilante's cronies and their interactions with him. As well as the incident concerning the puppet and Jackie, The Joke Man. Actually, that segment and the bit with Frank Gorshin are THE funniest moment in the film. The menu screens are static but have the benefit of the ultra cool title track for the film playing over them. Presentation wise, this is one of the lesser discs available on the market today. I'll admit, seeing Vincent Pastore AKA "Big Pussy" of The Sopranos, and Frank Gorshin-eternally the "Riddler" from the Batman series of the 1960's was quite refreshing. While it's not mentioned, I'd swear Gorshin was ad-libbing 100% of his lines! His acting style was quite funny and worth the time it took to get to his segment. The Extras package is rather spartan and it boasts nothing of any real interest. (See Below). On the whole, I'd have to give this one a pass, as it provided relatively nothing in the way of entertainment, comedic, dramatic or otherwise.

The Extras:

"Standup with Jackie The Jokeman Martling" I was a fan of the Howard Stern show for several years and found Jackie's humor to be pretty funny. However, after having some distance from the show, I think I'm showing my age. In the 15 minutes it takes for this segment to finish, I found 99.99% of his jokes seriously unfunny. The funniest bits occurred when Jackie cracked himself up at the silliness of his own jokes. Other than that, it was a loud and unfunny bit.

Music Videos by The Scoldees and Pilly These are two videos for two songs featured in the film. The visual/audio quality is generally poor and the production values are about the same.

Hidden Buttons and other Cool Extras There is a very obvious "hidden" button on the extras page and when selected it showcases two more segments of Jackie's standup routine.

Overall:

This is a difficult film to watch in that it's going in so many different directions. It's unlike anything I've seen before so, there's no comparison with what I've already watched. Its uniqueness is a good thing however; its execution is another story. While I found Frank Gorshin to be the single greatest comedic presence in this film, I'd find it very difficult to recommend this movie to anyone. Just for the record, For a film about sex, there's no nudity and no sex whatsoever. It's implied but it's not there. Anyway, this is one film that should have been baked a while longer in the creative process before it was released to the viewing public. Skip It

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