At some point during life I think that nearly everyone of us has had a job that we absolutely hated. I remember back when I was first getting a job and I "had to" because my mom wanted me out of the house. I took the plunge and worked for Burger King...oh yah...fast food! There was always that guy who was the best at making burgers, or the fastest at taking and completing orders. Obviously everyone disliked him and wanted to do anything to beat him at his own game. There were competitions but we never actually won anything worthwhile from them. There was, however, one game that I will always remember. Whenever a cute girl put in an order, we would write one of our phone numbers on the burger wrappers and try and see if she would call us (teenage dreams, you know). Once and a while we would get calls, but it we just got such a kick out of trying to get girls to call us back!
Employee of the Month has a great intro. We get a glimpse at the idea of buying in bulk. We see everything from giant bins of hair gel to shotguns sitting out to huge cases of beer. An American dream really...where else can you buy in bulk and get everything you could possibly want so that you can stockpile supplies in your home...at discount no less? This is how we are introduced to Super Club.
Employee of the Month is a movie about Zack (Dane Cook), a good-hearted guy who has given up on taking risks in life because he lost everything in his own startup business some years back. He lives with his grandmother and goes through his daily routine of slacking at work and hanging with friends...until the new cashier arrives. He wants to win over Amy (Jessica Simpson) and to do that he must beat out his archrival Vince (Dax Shepard) for Super Club employee of the month...rumor has it that Amy has a thing of the employee of the month. Since Zack is a lowly box boy who is late to work and does little to impress the boss, he has lots to improve on if he wants to reach his goal. Vince is #1 Cashier, on top of his game, and has been the employee of the month for 17 months straight. Vince is on a mission to set a new Super Club record and hit 18 consecutive months as employee of the month, which will win him a "newish Chevy Malibu." Tired of bring beat by Vince, Zack pulls out all the stops to impress the boss, win some gold stars, and show his good side to Amy in an effort to win her heart. This all leads to the ultimate Check Stand Ring Off.
In order for all this to happen Zack uses the help of his friends to garner enough strength and ideas to beat Vince at his own game. Lon (Andy Dick) can't see past his own hands and constantly tries to be the center of attention. Andy Dick plays this role perfectly and even though not a huge part he does a great job as a comic relief. Russell (Harland Williams) plays a laughable and raunchy man with a quick sense of humor...his one-liners are hysterically ridiculous. Iqbal (Brian George) is the family man of the group with, as he states it, 20 something kids. With the help of Zack's friends they are out to get Vince and his sidekick Jorge (Efren Ramirez). But as Zack starts to show up on time, receive compliments from customers, earn some gold stars, and work his way up into the rank of cashier (earning that all important cashier's lounge card), he starts to disregard the friends that watched his own back before. Ultimately leading us to what Employee of the Month is all about...friendship.
Employee of the Month is a lot of fun. I went in not expecting much...I was hoping for a little comedy but honestly didn't know if I would get anything worthwhile. I was worried because a lot of times when you throw together so many comedians you get just a big mess. I was pleasantly surprised. Yes, there are too many fart jokes, and just stupid humor that seems like it might be some kind of inside joke between all of the comedians. Some jokes like the boss Glen Gary (Tim Badley) and his corporate brother Glen Ross, and a Dumbo gag are nice touches though. The saving grace of the movie is the excellent dynamic between Dane Cook and Dax Shepard; they really make a great comedic pair. They constantly bicker back and forth, ad-lib, and try to outdo one another...and it creates genuine laughs. You could obviously tell that all the comedians had a lot of fun together. Especially when Zack and his friends are in the ultimate employee lounge they created up within the warehouse packages. When you get the four of them in there together, it is extremely funny.
1080p 16x9 presentation. We get some great colors; the blues are extremely accurate, along with really nice skin colors. Unfortunately, it also suffers from what many others do. There is a good amount of noise throughout the length of the movie. Not only in dark scenes, but even during brightly lit indoor scenes. When you watch the special features, you will be pleasantly surprised with how amazing they look, they are presented in 1080p goodness after all. Overall a good enough transfer that doesn't distract while watching this for what it is...a comedy.
Presented in DTS HD Audio and 5.1 D0lby Digital Surround EX. I found the track to be a little on the quiet side. I don't typically like to have to turn my volume up and down when the scenes switch from a soundtrack to dialogue, and unfortunately this is exactly what has to happen. There are several scenes of pure dialogue that I had to lean over and turn up the volume and then be overwhelmed with the soundtrack. Overall though, not too distracting, considering it happens only a few times.
Alternate Beginning – I actually really enjoyed this one, I said earlier in my review that I loved the beginning, but I got just the same amount of enjoyment from this one as well. It is basically a training video, which is set 10 years ago and has Zack and Vince sitting watching the new employee training video for Super Club. This scene also shows you how their hostility began, which is nice.
Bloopers – Bloopers were normal, just people messing up on their lines, although there is one in particular that really stands out and did make me laugh, a lot! It has something to do with Silence of the Lambs and that is all I am going to say.
Ad-libs – Just a couple of scenes when they do their own thing. Not really that funny.
At Work with Lon – This is a lame extra with Andy Dick acting like he can't see (which he probably can't with those glasses), but he is trying to fit people with glasses even though he can't see very well himself.
On Set Shenanigans – Laughing...messing up... more of what we have already seen.
The Beauty of Bulk – This is decently entertaining. All of the actors come in and act in character, telling us why they like Super Club. Each character brings out their personality to tell us what is the best part of Super Club. This is kind of funny, but again, not too much going for it.
Men of Super Club – Another feature with our male characters in their roles, acting like they have jobs at Super Club and what their normal day consists of, struggles they have, and why they like Super Club.
Commentary: There are two commentary tracks on here, one with writer/director Greg Coolidge and Dane Cook together, and one with Coolidge alone. Dane is funny and witty throughout and just adds his two cents whenever he so chooses. Coolidge goes over the normal difficulties of shooting and pointing out the obvious. The commentary is much better with both of them in the room. Dane seems to bring it to life and add some humor, while Coolidge by himself goes over the same stuff as he did with Dane but more in more detail than is necessary.
Employee of the Month is not great. There are some times that the comedy gets pretty bland but I still really enjoyed this one. Dane Cook was great, and even though I don't like Andy Dick too much, he didn't annoy me in this at all. The video is nice and the audio is good. If you want to have a night of entertainment that is sure to make you laugh once and a while, definitely go pick this one up for a rental!