Cedar Rapids appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-Ray Disc. . I found the movie to boast an excellent visual presentation.
Sharpness seemed nearly immaculate. Only a smidgen of softness ever appeared, as the vast majority of the movie looked distinctive and concise. No issues with jaggies or shimmering occurred, and the image lacked edge haloes. Source flaws never interfered with this clean transfer.
The movie featured a subdued palette that favored a brown tint much of the time, though blues became more prominent as the flick moved to a harsher place during its third act. The colors didn’t dazzle, but they satisfied. Blacks were dark and deep, while shadows showed nice clarity and delineation. I was totally satisfied with this terrific image.
As for the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack, it seemed low-key. The soundfield offered good stereo music – that also spread to the back speakers – but not much more. Effects demonstrated some decent ambience in bars and gatherings, but that was about it. Though we got some general atmosphere, nothing much occurred to flesh out the mix.
Audio quality appeared fine. Music provided the most presence, and the score appeared pretty full and rich. Effects were fine; again, they didn’t have much to do, but they remained reasonably accurate. Speech appeared natural and concise. Nothing particularly exciting materialized here, but the track was perfectly acceptable for a movie like this.
A few extras round out the set. Six Deleted Scenes run a total of seven minutes, 19 seconds. These include “Dinner with Macy” (1:11), “Song Dedication” (0:37), “Cart Ride” (0:13), “Fire Extinguisher Fight” (1:28), “Goodbye to Bree” (1:55) and “Cabin Extras” (1:55). Most of these just add to our impression of Tim as immature and idiotic; they don’t develop the story and they’re not amusing. “Bree” does give us a little closure for that character – it’s unnecessary, but it’s there – and “Extras” simply offers some random moments that would’ve gone during the coda.
A Gag Reel lasts four minutes, 17 seconds. It delivers the standard goofs/giggles as well as some alternate lines. The latter make it more interesting than most and worth a look.
Under Convention Connection, we get seven snippets with a total of 13 minutes, 19 seconds. These cover the characters/story and involve comments from executive producer/actor Ed Helms, and actors John C. Reilly, Anne Heche, Isiah Whitlock, Jr., Stephen Root, Kurtwood Smith, and Alia Shawkat. A few insights into performances emerge, but mostly these just deliver generic notes.
Next comes the two-minute, 55-second Mike O’Malley – Urban Clogger. Actor O’Malley talks about his dance performance in the movie and we see his practice along with some remakrs from instructor Shane Gruber. It’s quick but decent.
Tweaking in the USA goes for six minutes, 13 seconds and features Helms, Shawkat, director Miguel Arteta, and actors Seth Morris and Rob Corddry. We get info about the shooting of a big party sequence. It mixes in enough useful details to merit your time.
For another featurette, we go to Wedding Belles – Crashing a Lesbian Wedding. It fills
Four minutes, 16 seconds and offers remarks from screenwriter Phil Johnston, production designer Doug Meerdink and costume designer Hope Hanafin. They discuss aspects of the scene in question and deliver nice info about design/costume choices.
We see an ad for Tim’s new insurance company in the final film, but the one-minute, 16-second Top Notice Commercial gives us an alternate one. Actually, it’s a promo for the film; I don’t know where it ran, but it refers the viewer to the flick’s website. It’s a fun extra.
Two Fox Movie Channel Presents featurettes finish off the disc. We get “Direct Effect Miguel Arteta” (6:37) and “Writer’s Draft Phil Johnston” (6:48). In the first, Arteta discusses his approach to direction and aspects of shooting the film, while in the second, Johnston chats about aspects of the script/story/characters. Both are short but good, as they deliver a surprising amount of information across their brief running times.
The disc launches with ads for Win Win, Skateland and Big Mommas: Like Father Like Son. The set also provides the trailer for Rapids.
A second disc provides a Digital Copy of Rapids. This allows you to plop the movie onto different portable thingies. Laugh it up, fuzz ball!
With a pretty strong cast behind it and a fun – if derivative – concept, Cedar Rapids could’ve delivered some debauched humor. Unfortunately, it comes with annoying characters and a decided lack of comic inspiration. The Blu-ray provides excellent visuals, acceptable audio and a moderately interesting roster of supplements. This is a pretty positive Blu-ray for a disappointing movie.