Without A Paddle: Nature's Calling – Blu-ray Review

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Seth Green, Matthew Lillard, and Dax Shepard are all guys that have showed their comedy expertise and have been known to be quite funny in some of their performances before. Putting them together into a film seemed like a pretty decent idea because you just have to figure that three semi-talented guys such as Green, Lillard, and Shepard would surely pair well together and make for a hilarious production. If the film did well then it is almost expected that one sequel and quite possibly more would be on the way. Well, I have to ask one question when it comes to a sequel making its way to DVD/Blu-ray for Without A Paddle; how the hell do you justify making a sequel for a box-office bomb that made less then sixty million domestic?

Best friends for years, Zach and Ben are kind of opposites in that Zach is a partying nurse in an old folks’ home and Ben is a lawyer that hates his job. Together they get together to go on a trip to find the long-lost daughter of one of Zach’s patients before she passes away. The young girl, Heather, that they are attempting to find has not been seen since going into the Oregon woods years ago. Coming along for the ride is the patient’s grandson Nigel who is fresh in from London. Soon they find Heather who now goes by the environmentally loving name of Earthchild and is happy with where she is. Convincing is needed to get her back to see her grandmother and also to get Ben the girl of his dreams since Heather happens to be the one he’s loved since they were younger.

Yes, it is as bad as it sounds.

Wild antics and funny (?) one-liners are what fill up this film and they just don’t dare do the job. Remember my question earlier? Well, not only do I wonder how making a sequel for a film that grossed so little is possible, but then you don’t even bring back a single actor from it? Come on now and just lay off. Nature’s Calling is an abomination to film-making and even more so to Blu-ray. High definition of crap still makes it look like crap. Let me also throw in the fact that not only are a bunch of no-names filling up the casting sheet, but Jerry Rice makes random appearances in one of the stupidest roles ever. Oh yes, THE Jerry Rice. NFL legend and perhaps the greatest wide receiver of all time is here and he may have honestly tainted his entire football career with the less then ten minutes of screen time he got here.

The film is shown in 2.35:1 Anamorphic Widescreen format and it looks decent, but it’s like anyone should really care if this looks that good anyway. Colors are alright but sometimes things look a bit dull and the darker scenes even have a bit of a purplish tint to them.

The film is heard in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound and all can be heard just fine but nothing is overly impressive.

Up The Creek: The Making Of Without A Paddle: Nature’s Calling – Cast and crew share their thoughts on the film itself and also how it was to shoot it. They share short stories from on the set and that’s about it. (10:30)

Furious Nuts – Take a look at the CGI squirrels and the work the crew did on filming footage of real squirrels and all that. Boring. (7:00)

Treehouse Tales – The design and creation of the treehouse set is looked at here. Nothing interesting at all. (3:18)

Deleted Scenes – There are sixteen deleted scenes that are just as dull and worthless as the film itself. What bothers me about them though is that the back of the Blu-ray case actually calls them “Hilarious Deleted Scenes.” Really? You sure as hell could have fooled me.

Gag Reel – Some flubbing of lines, messed up props, and laughing going on but nothing that I found to be funny at all. (5:28)

Digital Copy – Only for Windows and not available for IPODs and other such devices.


Don’t do it. Just don’t even bother buying this, renting it, borrowing it, or having people giving you this as a gift. Nature’s Calling is boring, stupid, childish, and just dumb. The sad part is that some of those qualities usually make for some of the funniest films but this one can’t even be so stupid that it’s funny. I couldn’t care less about the special features because there is no point in watching extra material on a film that sucks horribly anyway. I’m done with this.

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Paramount presents Without A Paddle: Nature’s Calling. Directed by: Ellory Elkayem. Starring: Oliver James, Kristopher Turner, Rik Young, Jerry Rice. Written by: Jay Leggett & Mitch Rouse. Running time: 96 minutes. Rating: PG-13. Released on DVD: January 13, 2009. Available at Amazon.com

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