Directed by: Penelope Spheeris. Starring: Mike Myers, Dana Carvey, Rob Lowe, and Tia Carrere
Synopsis: Wayne Campbell's little public access television show is discovered by the smooth, handsome TV executive Benjamin Kane, who wants to turn it into a lame forum for the advertiser. Worse, Benjamin also has his eyes set on Wayne's gorgeous new Asian girlfriend, Cassandra. Based on a character Mike Myers created on Saturday Night Live, the slim plot is nicely filled out with hilarious pop culture and self-referential moments.
Sample quote: “Let me bring you up to speed. My name is Wayne Campbell. I live in Aurora, Illinois, which is a suburb of Chicago - excellent. I've had plenty of jo-jobs; nothing I'd call a career. Let me put it this way: I have an extensive collection of nametags and hairnets. Ok, so I still live with my parents, which I admit is bogus and sad. However I do have a cable access show, and I still know how to party. But what I'd really like is to do Wayne's World for a living. It might happen. Yeah, and monkeys might fly out of my butt.” — Wayne Campbell
Comment: With its references to Laverne and Shirley, Grey Poupon mustard ads, and Terminator movies, this movie may be largely incomprehensible to a younger generation. But man, it is hilarious to those in the know. And "Bohemian Rhapsody" will live on forever, right? Really, it's amazing that this film works and holds up as well as it does. Just a happy combination of cast, script, and director. Rating: ***½
The Extras: There is a nice set of interviews with cast, director, producer about the speed of the shoot (36 days), the many cooks in the kitchen ("I'd have to shoot some scenes three ways: my way, Mike's way, and Dana's way"), the difficulty of learning the Cantonese dialog (if you forget the movie had Cantonese dialog, it's time to see it again), and the surprisingly huge success of the movie. It's easy to forget now how big it actually was at the time. Also featured is a commentary by the director—not the greatest example of these ever, but does include some interesting tidbits, such as the need to get clearances for the many products. Clearances! Isn't that quaint? Today they'd all be paying big bucks for the privilege of being included right in the movie.
Usability: The menu is different, but it works very well. It looks like a digital cable TV grid, with a little commercial for Wayne's show in the upper corner. You can navigate through the grid and select the movie, the setup, the special features. You can also put it on things like "The Brady Bunch" and get a few scenes from that classic series. One of the best alternative menu designs I've seen.
Next category: Television DVDs
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