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White Chicks

White Chicks on DVD

You can’t help but lose a little faith in Hollywood when six writers get together and White Chicks is the best they can do.

From the gang that brought us Scary Movie 1 & 2 comes a movie about a couple of bumbling FBI agents who go deep undercover as – you guessed it – white chicks. After a job goes awry and they get the wrong guys, brothers Kevin and Marcus Copeland are assigned to escort two rich white chicks to a fancy “ball” type-thing. When a car accident leaves both chicks with faces cut, they flat out refuse to go.

Naturally, the brothers fear for their jobs, so they enlist the help of some guy they know somehow, who just happens to be an “expert” on disguises. So he whips up some masks, breasts, and hair, and creates the most obviously fake women in the history of the world (editor's note: this reviewer has obviously never seen Dame Edna). The two black guys become two white chicks, and as they head off to the ball, the filmmakers would like you to believe hilarity ensues.

So much can be said about this movie. First and foremost, it’s hard to understand anyone taking it seriously because the makeup effects are so bad. We’re supposed to believe that everyone believes these are white chicks? Now, I completely understand that special effects and makeup effects are not perfect, and if you expect perfection you’re going to be disappointed. But if this is the best they could do, they shouldn’t have made the movie in the first place. Although I’m sure if they’d called Rick Baker, he could have whipped something up.

Okay, so there are a couple of instances in the movie that make you chuckle. Unfortunately, when you’re doing everything you can to make every line a joke, a couple of chuckles is not very good. Possibly the worst aspect of the film is how many funny situations are set up and then made completely unfunny. A perfect example is when one of the “white chicks” is giving a demonstration on oral sex. Any other movie could have had a lot of fun with it and made it hysterical. The writers behind White Chicks take it and make it so unfunny, you can’t even believe they thought it was funny when they were writing it. Pretty much the entire movie – the dance contest, the date in a strange house with a vicious dog – is a series of snippets from other, funnier movies.

For the movie to be better, it shouldn’t have been a Wayans project. When the FBI agents are in their makeup, they should have been played by the white chicks they’re impersonating. At least then you’d have a Monty Python-style scenario going on: women playing men playing women (similar to the men playing women playing men during the stoning scene in Life of Brian). Not only would the situation already be funnier, but if the actresses were good enough, they could have pulled it off infinitely more believably than Shawn and Marlon Wayans.

It must also be said that the movie is hard to take because it takes full advantage of the politically correct-obsessed world of today. If a bunch of white guys had gotten together and made a movie called Black Chicks, the controversy would nearly destroy the planet. But because it’s black people making fun of white people, it’s perfectly acceptable.

I’ve heard a few people say that White Chicks is the funniest movie they’ve ever seen. These are the kind of people you should avoid talking to. White Chicks is a huge disaster of a movie, never sure what it’s doing or why it’s doing it. It spends more time trying to make you think it’s funny; it forgets to make it funny. I can’t think of a single reason why anyone should waste their time on this movie.

On DVD, White Chicks is available in PG-13 and Unrated versions, and they can’t even do that right. While the unrated version runs six minutes longer, I’ll be darned if I can figure out what scenes were added. There’s not a single second in the film that deserves to be considered unrated; the closest thing is (yet another) explosive diarrhea in the women’s bathroom scene, but it’s no worse than in the fifty other movies it's been done. Normally we’d recommend the unrated version because it would feature what they couldn’t show in theatres, but it seems completely superfluous in this case.

The movie itself is presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen and Dolby Digital 5.1. Picture quality features great color and detail, with no dust, grain, or halos. The film doesn’t exactly cry out for a home theater system, but they did a good job with the disc. The audio track has some excellent separation, particularly during the action-ish scenes. Bullets whiz past your head and things crash all over the place but don’t drown out the other elements. Dialogue is clear and the score stays mostly in the background except when it’s meant to be the audio focus (like during the dance contest).

We get an audio commentary from the Wayanses that I was hoping would be an apology, but to this day they believe they made a great film. The first of three featurettes focuses on the makeup effects, and features everyone talking about how real they look. In fact, they mention how they wouldn’t have made the movie if they couldn’t get the brothers to look convincingly like white chicks.

I guess no one had the heart to tell them…

The other two featurettes are typical behind-the-scenes vignettes. The first, “A Wayans Comedy,” takes us through the process of creating and writing the movie with the Wayans family. The other, an “Encore: On the Set” special is pure fluff. There are also some filmographies, and a series of trailers.

White Chicks, from Columbia Tristar Home Entertainment
115 minutes, anamorphic widescreen (1.85:1) 16x9 enhanced, Dolby Digital 5.1
Starring Shawn Wayans, Marlon Wayans, Jaime King, Frankie Faison, Lochlyn Munro
Produced by Keenan Ivory Wayans, Shawn Wayans, Marlon Wayans, Rick Alvarez, Lee R. Mayes
Screenplay by Keenan Ivory Wayans & Shawn Wayans & Marlon Wayans & Andy McElfresh & Michael Anthony Snowden & Xavier Cook, Directed by Keenan Ivory Wayans



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