Thursday, September 14, 2006

DVD DIGEST: Herbie: Fully Loaded

Today’s DVDs are packed to the gills with commentaries and production information, but who other than unemployed Film Comment subscribers have the time to wade through all that crap? Instead, let us do it for you. We’ll check out a new release, listen to all the commentaries (even the one that’s just the gaffers, insect wranglers, and stunt butts), view the documentaries, and boil the information down to only the most interesting tidbits.

This week’s DVD release: Herbie: Fully Loaded

Commentary Nuggets:
  • The car was the hardest role to cast. When the casting director finally found one “with a mind of its own,” everyone was initally excited. However, after Brecken Myer was slaughtered in a seatbelt accident, it became clear that the car was possessed by a demonic force, and the production was only saved when a couple of 1950’s teens managed to crush it with a forklift.
  • Special effects wizards used a computer to simultaneously shrink Lindsay Lohan’s breast size and the audience for the film.
  • “Herbie” shared many racy stories spanning the length of his Hollywood career, including one about a three-way with Dean Martin and Don Knotts, on the set of 1977’s Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo.
  • Director Angela Robinson fell in love with the project because she felt it was an inspiration to other young women who might be struggling with the issues of entering the Daytona 500 and owning a magical car.
  • In an inspiring display of devotion to her craft, Lindsay Lohan spent much of the shoot “fully loaded” herself.
  • Michael Keaton is just happy to be in any movie where he’s not playing a living snowman.
Deleted Scenes:
  • An entire Antarctic subplot was cut from the film. It was later released as the documentary March of the Penguins.
  • Matt Dillon’s character originally had a hobby: taking pictures of crash victims, digitally manipulating the images so the survivors appeared to be engaged in deviant sexual acts, and posting the pictures online. All scenes devoted to this hobby were cut, as it was thought to make his character seem “too unsympathetic.”
Hidden “Easter Egg”:
  • Click on Herbie’s headlamps in the main menu, and see a picture of Lindsay Lohan back when she was a cute, shapely, redheaded young actress, and not a too-much-sunless-suntan-wearing, anorexic, bleach-blonde young cokehead. Then cry.

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