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Columbia TriStar Home Video presents
Glory Daze (1996)

"The bitch about getting older, you know, you don't fling yourself into love and friendships the way you did before you got hurt. That's a damn shame."
- Jack (Ben Affleck)

Review By: Kevin Clemons   
Published: February 10, 2003

Stars: Ben Affleck, Sam Rockwell, Alyssa Milano
Other Stars: Matt Damon, Spaulding Gray, French Stewart, John Rhys Davies, Megan Ward, Matthew McConaughey, Brendan Fraser
Director: Rich Wilkes

Manufacturer: DVDL
MPAA Rating: R for language, nudity,
Run Time: 01h:39m:41s
Release Date: February 11, 2003
UPC: 043396085596
Genre: comedy


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
C+ BC+C+ B-

DVD Review

The problem with adulthood is that at some point it becomes something more than a spot on the horizon. For me, the thought of finishing college and thus being propelled into the real world with a job, family, and responsibilities is scary. And not "I can't find my keys" scary, but "there is no beer left in the fridge" scary. Oh well, life changes and sometimes it feels as if we were on a roller coaster with our hands in the air. For those who share my frightened outlook on life after college, you too may find solace and comfort in Glory Daze, a film with characters that have fears that make mine look tame in comparison.

Glory Daze tells the story of four roommates who are facing the end of their college lives, and unfortunately none of them have plans beyond graduation day. Jack (Affleck) is a party guy who, amidst numerous girlfriends and disappointed parents, is on track to graduate in two days. Dennis (Stewart) is a professional student and acts as a father figure to his roommates. Rob (Rockwell) is a ladies man with a permanent attachment in Joanie (Ward), while Slosh (Vien Hong) and Mickey (DeRamus) are outsiders looking for a way in. Add to this, parties, talks about prolonging their college lives as a way to avoid the real world, and the required fraternity party and you have Glory Daze.

In the pantheon of the "slackers hanging on for one last inch of college" genre films such as Reality Bites and Animal House, Glory Daze rests as simply a mediocre entry as it does nothing to improve upon what has already been done. Screenwriter/director Rich Wilkes has an ear for catchy dialogue; Jack, in particular, is given some truly terrific one-liners, but his grasp of human emotion and comedic situations is lacking severely. Another flaw of the film is that nothing happens that propels what shell there is of a plot along towards a satisfying conclusion.

The saving grace for Glory Daze is that college students and recent grads alike may well identify with the characters Wilkes has crafted. Giving the credit to the script is a tad unfair as it is in the performances by the terrific cast that the characters grow into something more than stereotypes. Affleck, who made the film before Chasing Amy and Good Will Hunting propelled him to superstardom, is wonderful as Jack, a likeable jerk he pulls off with aplomb. Stewart and Rockwell each match Affleck note for note with their performances and comedic timing. As a side note, I watched Glory Daze shortly after I viewed Confessions of a Dangerous Mind in theaters and I am comfortable in saying that if Rockwell does not at some point become a huge star there is simply no justice.

Look for surprising cameos from the likes of Brendan Fraser, Matt Damon, Matthew McConaughey, Alyssa Milano, Spaulding Gray, and John Rhys-Davies.



Rating for Style: C+
Rating for Substance: B

 

Image Transfer

 OneTwo
Aspect Ratio1.85:1 - Widescreen1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyesno
Anamorphicyesno


Image Transfer Review: The 1.85:1 anamorphic transfer for Glory Daze is hard to judge given the low budget for the film. Shot on what appears to be 16mm film stock, the transfer shows no real sharpness or detail to speak of and the colors fail to stand out from each other. The print that was used yields some flaws, and edge enhancement and moiring are evident in several scenes.

A slightly cropped 1.33:1 transfer is also available on this RSDL disc.

Image Transfer Grade: C+

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Englishyes


Audio Transfer Review: Though the packaging boasts a Dolby Digital 5.1 transfer, Glory Daze is in fact presented in a lackluster Dolby Surround mix. Dialogue sounds fine, though it was not as crisp and defined as I had hoped. The surround and left and right speakers are given little to do.

Audio Transfer Grade: C+

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 28 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English, French with remote access
3 Other Trailer(s) featuring Adaptation, Punch Drunk Love, and Stealing Harvard
Packaging: Alpha
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: RSDL

Extras Review: Trailers for Adaptation, Punch Drunk Love, and Stealing Harvard are offered in Dolby Digital 5.1 and anamorphic widescreen. The trailer section is worth visiting as it offers a glimpse at two of the smartest and funniest films of the past decade. No, the latter is not one of them.

Extras Grade: B-

 

Final Comments

The only thing that sets Glory Daze apart from the crowd of so many other films that milk the same jokes for unsatisfying results is the cast, who lend it a sort of unique charm. It is worth owning simply for the many stars of today that were then beginners. I wouldn't dare compare this film to American Graffiti in any respect, but hey, it is fun to look at just how Ben Affleck’s hair has progressed.

 


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