Martin Short remains an underappreciated comedic talent, and although his Jiminy Glick character is one-note, it's one-note done well. In an era where entertainment shows are mindless and only serve to promote and not to question (and an era where, for whatever reason, Sugar Ray singer Mark McGrath can be considered an entertainment reporter), Short's character is refreshing. For those who've never seen "Primetime Glick" on Comedy Central, Jiminy Glick is an overweight (Short in a fat suit) entertainment reporter in a not-too-major market who, on the surface, is deeply interested in his celebrity guests. However, beneath that, he couldn't care a whole lot - he barely does any research into who he's interviewing and often makes mistakes in interviews. He also has a habit of stuffing his face while in the midst of talking to his latest subject.
The movie has Glick thinking that his career will get a boost from being able to cover the Toronto International Film Fest. With his wife Dixie (Jan Hooks) and two kids along for the ride, the family - after some confusion - ends up in a creepy, seemingly abandoned - aside from director David Lynch (also played by Short, who does an amusing Lynch impersonation) - hotel.
After being the only one to give a good review to a movie ("Growin' Up Gandhi") he completely slept through, Glick starts to get a lot of attention from the celebs that had previously ignored him, including the star of "Growin' Up Gandhi", who rarely grants interviews. Glick also finds himself in the middle of a bizarre murder mystery involving actress Miranda Coolidge (Elizabeth Perkins). The mystery and comedy elements do not mix together well, but the movie does manage to succeed in little moments throughout, such as a red carpet moment with Keifer Sutherland and a few celebrity interviews. There's also a few other assorted laughs throughout, such as the hotel sequence and a Euro-trash director played by John Michael Higgins. Short's Lynch impersonation was funny, but wasn't really tied into the story well.
Overall, despite some good laughs and a solid effort from Short, "Lalawood" just isn't as funny as I'd hoped. The mixture of different storylines aren't tied together well, and the separate stories aren't developed terribly well. Some of the moments where Glick randomly approaches real celebs (Whoopi Goldberg, Kevin Kline, Sutherland, Sharon Stone, Susan Sarandon) are the best moments in the movie and the film should have just been that - throw Short as Glick into the festival and have Short improvise questions on-the-spot. It would have seemed like just as much of an extended episode as this does (a lengthy reel of outtakes are at the end of the film - while they are admittedly funny, they do feel like padding), but at least it would likely have been less uneven.
VIDEO: "Jiminy Glick in Lalawood" is presented by Sony Pictures Home Video in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen. The picture quality is a bit of a mixed bag, but mostly fine. Sharpness and detail are average, as despite appearing mostly crisp, there are some scenes that looked a bit soft and some low-light scenes that appeared slightly murky.
Aside from those issues, there weren't too many other concerns. Some minor pixelation was noticed, but not too distracting. Some shimmering was also present, but no edge enhancement was seen. The print appeared to be in great condition, with no specks, marks or other issues. Colors looked alright, as they mostly appeared natural and well-saturated, but there were some moments (such as a party sequence or two) where they looked smeary.
SOUND: "Jiminy Glick" is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1, and the audio remained a "comedy mix" throughout, with little in the way of surround use. Quality was fine though, as dialogue remained mostly crisp and clear, as did music.
EXTRAS: Two commentaries are offered - one with co-writer/star Martin Short and co-writers Mike Short and Paul Flaherty and one with director Vadim Jean, as well as 15 minutes of deleted scenes and promos for other titles from the studio. The commentary by the Shorts and Flaherty is pretty amusing and a worthwhile listen for fans.
Final Thoughts: "Jiminy Glick in Lalawood" does offer some chuckles, but the story's a bit of a mess and the funniest moments are not story-related, but the celeb interviews. The DVD presentation offers satisfactory audio/video quality, along with a few nice supplements. Those interested should try it as a rental.