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Stripes: Extended Cut
DVD disk
07.11.2005 By: Quigles
Stripes: Extended Cut order
Director:
Ivan Reitman

Actors:
Bill Murray
Harold Ramis
Warren Oates

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Two best-friend schmoes stuck in go-nowhere jobs join the army to get in shape and give their lives some discipline. Hilarity sets in.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
Girls may have chick flicks, but us guys have STRIPES, the ultimate “guy movie”. Its premise isn’t groundbreaking (or even slightly original), but the crazy antics of Bill Murray and the supporting cast are just too hilarious to resist. I can safely say that this is Bill Murray at his finest, and his ad-libs create some of the funniest, most memorable moments on screen. Take for example the stovetop love scene with Murray and Soles, in which Murray takes a spatula and rapidly slides it below her backside. Her reactions were extremely jumpy and damn funny, but that’s because they were genuine; Murray improvised the whole thing. Multiply scenes like these by 100, and you have you yourself a fun movie. Add in non-stop clever gags, a great cast of newcomer young actors, plus a shit-load of T&A for the kids, and then you have yourself not only a fun movie, but a f**king awesome “slap yo’ momma in the face” fun movie. And that’s a fact, Jack! (Sorry, I couldn’t resist)

20 years after release, this movie is still just as funny as it ever was, not to mention extremely quotable (I even got a boot up my ass for saying “I got the shit kicked out of me in Wisconsin” one too many times). Aside from the comedy gold delivered from both Murray and Ramis (who, by the way, work especially well together), there are also plenty of strikingly amusing side characters to enjoy. To start, there’s John Candy (in his first American flick) as the overly aggressive Ox, who later plays against the likes of John Diehl (also a newcomer here) as a dimwitted individual who decided to join the army before he got drafted (and is then later told there isn’t a draft, to which he replies, “There was one?”). Other great first-timers include Judge Reinhold as the drugged-up Elmo and the breathtakingly gorgeous Sean Young. I don’t know how else to say it – STRIPES rules. With all of the fantastic actors, the highly comical shenanigans, and the sidesplitting one-liners, this is really a must-own.
THE EXTRAS
Sometimes quality matters more than quantity, and this is one of those times.

STRIPES - Extended Cut (featuring 18 minutes of deleted scenes): You get the option of either watching the theatrical cut of the film, or the extended cut, which seamlessly branches the deleted scenes in with the rest of the flick. One minor annoyance I can imagine some will find is that whenever a new “extended” scene appears, a little on-screen prompt near the bottom informs you where it begins and ends. Personally, it didn’t bother me at all. I’m normally not a fan of “extended” cuts and whatnot, but I actually found this one to be really good. There’s a lot of extra humor, and even more wonderful nudity (hoorah!), not to mention it cleared up a number of questions I had with the original cut of the movie. This version is certainly worth your time, so check it out.

Commentary (with director Reitman and writer/producer Goldberg): Man, this was great. Any fan of STRIPES should be sure to listen to this, as plenty of info regarding the start of the movie, Murray’s improv on set, and plenty more. For example, before a major rewrite, STRIPES started out as CHEECH & CHONG JOIN THE ARMY. I mean, how funny is that, right? One minor annoyance I had was that it felt like all the cool info explained here was repeated in the making-of featurette...

Stars and Stripes: Parts I and II (55:41): This two-part featurette should prove a magnificent treat for fans. The entire cast and crew (yes, even Bill Murray) discuss and look back on their experiences while making the film. Other cool stuff is revealed too, such as getting the support of the army and how hard (but still fun) it was to work alongside the constantly surprising Murray. The mindless actor chatter seemed to go on a little long for my liking, not to mention there were a lot of actual film clips throughout, but despite that, this is a must-watch.

Deleted Scenes (17:44): While I do feel these 6 scenes were cut for good reason, it’s still an absolute pleasure to view them with the film, via the “extended cut” option. A few of my favorite scenes include where Russell and Winger go AWOL, Winger talking back to Capt. Stillman, and love scene where P.J. Soles lets the twins loose. I wouldn’t pick the extended cut over the original, but it’s great to have it at hand.

There are also 4 Previews to check out, as well as the Trailer for STRIPES.

Miscellaneous:

EM-59 Urban Assault Vehicle Cut-Out: What a bizarre inclusion. We are basically given a DVD insert with ads on one side, and a cut-out of the “top secret” car from the movie. Kinda cool, I guess.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
This is easily my favorite Bill Murray movie. He single-handedly makes the flick great, so matters are only improved when the other great side-players are added into the mix. On top of that, the extras are superb. The extended edition of movie answers a lot of questions, not to mention is just plain great to watch. The commentary and making-of are also outstanding, making this one easily worth purchasing, even if you already own the previous DVD.
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