There’s nothing really wrong with the remake of “The Pink Panther,” the film made famous by the bumbling, stumbling, fumbling of Peter Sellers. But that said, there isn’t really anything that stands out that makes it special in any way, and it certainly in no way has the laugh-out-loud qualities of the original.
“The Pink Panther” is another film that begs the question: why would one even think about remaking a film that was already excellent to begin with? If the original had flaws or was unfunny, maybe, but given the film is hilarious and has Sellers in his prime, remaking the film was asinine.
The plot is similar, someone has stolen the Pink Panther diamond and killed a famous football (read: soccer) owner in the process. The head policeman in France wants to be made a hero, so he sets Clouseau up on a wild goose chase to divert attention away from the police in order to work behind the scenes to catch the criminals. And you can probably guess where this is headed just by the plot details.
Yes, it’s predictable. Yes, you can see thejokes coming a mile away. Yes, it’s ludicrous. But, surprisingly, “The Pink Panther” is not as bad as you might think. Steve Martin, who channels Clouseau, does a decent job as the clumsy buffoon. There are a few good laughs here. Singer Beyoncé Knowles co-stars in a throwaway role, but Jean Reno makes up for it as the lovable sidekick.
Extras: A decent amount of material on the special features side, including 11 deleted scenes with commentary, an alternate audio track commentary from the director, Knowles’ music video and an exclusive performance by Knowles, an alternate opening (a rare thing for DVDs) and four featurettes on the production side of the film. The most interesting is the “Sleuth Cams,” which show you different angles to the production and are an interesting take on making movies.
» If anyone is a Neil Young fan, you must check out “Neil Young: Heart of Gold.” The film is a documentary on Young’s final weekend of his Prairie Wind concert tour, both the events leading up to his final performances and the performances themselves. “Heart of Gold” is a masterpiece of filmmaking and two concerts for the ages from the godfather of grunge. The DVD rocks too with new footage, behind-the-scenes material and a ton of interviews with Neil Young and other musicians. Price: $29.99. Rent or buy: buy!
» Three classic television shows are out this week with another full-season set. “Cheers: The Complete Eighth Season,” “Frasier: The Complete Eighth Season” and “MacGyver: The Complete Sixth Season” each include the entire episode sets from each season, however, not much else beyond the episodes. There is literally nothing on here in terms of special features, so this is just for fans only. Price: $42.99, each. Rent or buy: Buy (if a fan).
» The good news is that “Beavis and Butt-Head: The Mike Judge Collection, Volume Two” is not cut up (unlike the first volume). The bad news is that they still are not releasing the full seasons of the show, instead opting for best-of collections. Volume three is set for an August release, so we won’t get the full seasons until after that, if at all. In the immortal words of Butt-Head, heh, uh, that sucks. Price: $39.99. Rent or buy: Rent.
» Also, “The World’s Fastest Indian,” “16 Blocks,” “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang,” “Guardian of the Realm,” “Dharma & Greg: Season One,” “Room 6,” “Face The Music,” “The Princess Bride: Buttercup Edition,” “Getting Played,” “Dora The Explorer: Animal Adventures,” “This is America, Charlie Brown,” “The Betty Grable Collection Volume One,” “End of the Spear” and “Mother Teresa.”