If Cuba Gooding, Jr. continues to keep placing himself in god-awful movies, I think I'm going to start a campaign to get the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to take back his Academy Award. Boat Trip proves to be another (and perhaps the worst) in a long line of bad choices for Gooding.
Validating Roger Ebert's rule that "No good movie other than The Wizard of Oz features a hot air balloon", Boat Trip assures its path to failure early with a scene where Gooding takes his girlfriend (Vivica A. Fox) on a balloon ride so he can propose to her. It isn't until Gooding is well up into the atmosphere that his character suddenly remembers his problem with heights and motion sickness, and promptly throws up on Vivica – yet still has the nerve to ask her for her hand in marriage.
Needless to say, Gooding is turned down, and also finds out that his girl has been dating another guy. Six months later, his good friend (played by Horatio Sanz) convinces Gooding (after meeting a friend in a bar) that the best place to meet young women is on a cruise. But Sanz's big mouth gets them in trouble with one of the travel agents, and the guys get intentionally booked on a gay cruise, although they don't realize it until it's too late.
This, as they say, is where the fun begins, as director (and co-writer) Mort Nathan throws every stereotypical gay cliché that you can possibly think of on the screen. As if that weren't bad enough, the boat picks up a stranded-at-sea Swedish modeling team, so that Nathan can start throwing every degrading cliché about blonde women that he can think of on the screen as well. Which pretty much means that the only thing worse than being a heterosexual male trapped on this gay cruise would to be a movie-goer trapped in a theater playing this film.
Before we get into the A/V quality and extras, a few words about the packaging of this disc. Artisan has gone out of its way to make sure that no mention of the word "gay" has been placed anywhere on the box cover. In fact, the box itself is quite deceptive – surrounding Cuba and Horatio with beautiful women. The menus on this "Unrated" version are also interesting…being the only I've seen – outside of an adult title – to feature nudity as part of the actual menu. The menu (and one extra, which we'll get to in a bit) features Playboy models which have nothing to do with the movie, other than being a lame attempt to sell more copies of this DVD.
The video here is only about average for a DVD release of just a recent film. The movie is presented in 1.77:1 anamorphic widescreen, but there is occasional dirt on the print (which is quite visible at times thanks to the blue sky that is often in the background of many scenes) and even instances of pixilation that can be picked up in the solid background of many parts of the movie. The colors, however are bright and the flesh tones properly balanced, so this isn't a bad transfer – just not a great one.
Viewers will have their selection of either a 5.1 or 2.0 Dolby Track. Listening to the 5.1 track, I found the audio to be well-done, but with nothing remarkable or outstanding about it. The track isn't all that aggressive, even during the few instances in the movie where a song is playing during one of the film's big sequences (for example, at the end of the film where Gooding races to the woman he is in love with).
As mentioned above, Artisan has recruited some Playboy models to try and make this DVD a bigger seller. In addition to the models appearing on the main menu, they also show up for an extra called (I kid you not) Tanning Tips, which has little to do with tanning, and a lot to do with cleavage and nudity. Also on the disc is a Trivia Track which can be played over the film. This is one of those subtitle deals where interesting (or perhaps uninteresting in this case) facts pop up as you're watching the movie. There's also a Deleted Scenes section, a Bloopers and Outtakes section, and a handful of Trailers for other titles.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Boat Trip may be the biggest disaster to occur aboard a cruise ship since the RMS Titanic. No matter what your sexual preference may be, you'll want to avoid this shipwreck at all costs.