Wild Hogs appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.35:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This became a good but not great image.
Sharpness was good. Some edge haloes cropped up and impacted delineation, and I also thought some noise reduction created mild softness. Still, the overall impression remained pretty positive.
No issues with jagged edges or shimmering occurred. Sources flaws remained absent.
The film went with a mix of teal and amber. These didn’t seem extreme and the disc reproduced them in a satisfying manner.
Blacks were good, and shadows seemed clear and concise. Overall, the transfer appeared pretty positive.
The LPCM Uncompressed 5.1 audio of Wild Hogs also worked well, as with all the road scenes, the soundfield opened up nicely. Bikes and other vehicles zipped around the spectrum well and created a fine sense of the highway settings. Otherwise we got general ambience that formed the places in a pleasing manner.
The surrounds added good info to the mix. They weren’t particularly active much of the time, but they connected with the forward speakers to a good degree.
Audio quality was strong. Speech always remained natural and concise, and the score showed solid range and clarity.
Songs followed suit, while effects also came across as clean and accurate. They displayed punch when necessary and always seemed well represented. This was a perfectly good mix.
How did the Blu-ray compare to the DVD version? The uncompressed audio felt a bit warmer than the DVD’s lossy track.
Visuals boasted the usual format-based improvements, as it looked better defined and more film-like. Even with my minor complaints, the Blu-ray still offered a clear upgrade over the DVD.
The Blu-ray includes the same extras as the DVD, and we begin with an audio commentary from director Walt Becker and writer Brad Copeland. Both sit together for this running, screen-specific chat.
We learn about what brought them onto the project, locations and sets, cast and performances, song choices, stunts, motorcycle-related topics, and a few other production notes.
Becker and Copeland provide a competent but fairly banal commentary. They tell us some good details, most of which connect to the actors and their work.
However, we get a lot of praise for all involved and the track never becomes terribly involving. There’s enough here to keep fans interested, but the commentary never becomes very stimulating.
Two featurettes follow. Bikes, Brawls and Burning Bars: The Making of Wild Hogs goes for 16 minutes, 19 seconds and brings info from Becker, Copeland, stunt coordinator Jack Gill, and actors John Travolta, William H. Macy, Tim Allen, and Martin Lawrence.
We learn what attracted Becker to the project, issues related to the cast and performances, motorcycle-related subjects such as actor training, improvisation, stunts, action and general notes.
Though “Bikes” comes with some of the expected happy talk, it does manage to deliver a mix of good notes. I like the discussion of how they got the actors comfortable on their bikes, and it’s also amusing to see Ray Liotta’s intensity on the set. Don’t expect a stellar featurette, but “Bikes” is pretty good.
Next comes How to Get Your Wife to Let You Buy a Motorcycle. In this two-minute, 49-second clip, Gill offers some tips. This mostly acts as a conglomeration of movie clips and has little value beyond cuteness.
Two Deleted Scenes and an Alternate Ending fill a total of four minutes, 11 seconds. In addition to the “Ending” (1:34), we get “Acute Molar Abscess” (1:17) and “Chili Pepper Abuse” (1:20).
“Molar” just offers a minor extension of the scene in Doug’s office, while “Abuse” provides a short intro to a confrontation at the Madrid chili festival. Neither are problematic, but they’re pretty extraneous.
At least they’re better than the “Alternate Ending”. Frankly, it’s dreadful. It extends an already poor running gag and would have completed the flick on a truly idiotic note.
The first two can be viewed with or without commentary from Becker and Copeland. They offer some basic notes about the segments and let us know why they cut them. I have no idea why they couldn’t find the 79 seconds to discuss “Abuse”, though.
A collection of Outtakes runs two minutes, 34 seconds. These feature the usual fooling around moments and various mistakes. None of them are more interesting than usual despite the presence of various comedians on the set.
The disc opens with ads for Ratatouille, The Invisible, Meet the Robinsons and Invincible. No trailer for Hogs appears here.
Wild Hogs provides completely mediocre entertainment. Given my insanely low expectations for the film, that comes as something of an accomplishment, as I feared it would be a much crummier flick. The Blu-ray offers good picture and audio as well as a decent collection of extras. Though more enjoyable than I expected, I still think Hogs is forgettable at best.
To rate this film, visit the original review of WILD HOGS