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Comedy Central Home Video presents
Roast of Denis Leary (Uncensored) (2003)

"Tonight we're not gonna be mean. Mean is easy. Mean is cheap. Anybody can be mean. You know who's mean? Denis Leary is mean."
- Host Jeff Garlin

Review By: Mark Zimmer   
Published: August 05, 2004

Stars: Denis Leary, Jeff Garlin
Other Stars: Nick DiPaolo, Conan O'Brien, Adam Ferrara, Joe Mantegna, Colin Quinn, Christopher Walken, Father Don Gavin, Gilbert Gottfried, Gena Gershon, Rene Russo, Mario Cantone, Michael J. Fox, Dr. Dre, Ed Lover, Dane Cook, Peter Gallagher, Lenny Clarke, Jon Stewart
Director: John Fortenberry

MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (extensive profanity, sexual references, extreme homophobia)
Run Time: 01h:01m:22s
Release Date: August 03, 2004
UPC: 097368776845
Genre: comedy


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
C D+A-B- C+

DVD Review

I was hesitant about taking this disc for review, since I despise Denis Leary. He reminds me of the smug, self-satisfied bully who has little to be smug about. I go so far as to refuse to buy any products that Leary is hawking. Quaker State, take notice. But then it occurred to me that in a roast Leary might be getting as good as he gives, so here we are.

Unfortunately, that's not quite the case, even though Leary's dismal career (when Operation Dumbo Drop is a career highlight, one really should rethink career goals) ought to provide plenty of fodder for insult. Most of the parade of D-list celebrities that wander through are clearly terrified of Leary and spend most of their time berating and insulting the other members of the panel rather than their angry subject. The ones toughest on him are prerecorded messages from Joe Mantegna and the funniest segment, featuring Gilbert Gottfried voicing Leary's wolfhound. After all, who knows you better than your dog? Gottfried can be extremely nasty and he really lets out the stops and manages to be funnier than usual in doing so, with a bitter venom that's right at home in a roast.

Mario Cantone, a disgrace to homosexuals everywhere with his gay Stepin Fetchit routine, manages to set back gay rights as much as RuPaul as the butt of nonstop "jokes" about his sexuality. Rene Russo turns up for a bizarre filmed episode that, despite the "uncensored" tag, is pixelated (though an uncensored still from it appears in the end credits, for the curious). Gena Gershon contributes a fairly lame song, though for prurient interest she is scantily clad as she performs high kicks. The sexual content is very high, with wall-to-wall foul language. Oddly enough, one of the funnier segments belongs to Leary's priest, who must be a hoot at mass.

As is standard for the roast format, Leary gets the last word, which fills the last quarter of the program. He's as merciless as the rest of the cast should have been, so if you enjoy seeing Leary do his thing, you'll get plenty of opportunity to see that. Quite a bit of his performance falls flat (even moreso in the uncut version in the special features). That's to be expected, since Leary acted as producer himself and seems to be in love with his own material.

On the whole, this is a typical lame roast, and as such is at most worth a rental. Besides the Gottfried bit, the other funny bits are from an ill-looking Michael J. Fox begging Leary to stop advocating for Parkinson's research and an extended bit as Dr. Dre and Ed Lover give each of Leary's movies a two-word review (such as, "Why, Denis?"). Replay value is pretty low. Don't be fooled: the bonus footage is counted in the 99-minute running time listed on the keepcase; the actual program runs only a hour.

Rating for Style: C
Rating for Substance: D+

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicno


Image Transfer Review: The picture is sharp and clear, as is to be expected for such a recent production. Even though it's filmed live, blacks are reasonably good and color values seem to be more or less accurate. I didn't notice any significant artifacting.

Image Transfer Grade: A-

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Englishno


Audio Transfer Review: The 2.0 Dolby Surround track is almost entirely center-oriented, with some music by Big Bad Voodoo Daddy and audience noise and applause leaking into the surrounds. It's not very immersing but adequate for what it is. The music has good range and depth, with solid bass.

Audio Transfer Grade: B-

 

Disc Extras

Static menu with music
Scene Access with 8 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English (closed captioning) with remote access
Packaging: generic plastic keepcase
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: Four deleted or cut-down segments are included as bonus material. The most substantial (22m:47s) is the uncut version of Leary's rebuttal. There are quite a few jokes here that go nowhere and were wisely edited out. There are two segments from the red carpet greeting featuring aimless interview segments with Cantone and Gottfried. The uncut section of the Dre/Lover movie review is also provided, adding a few titles skipped over in the main program. Finally, Patrice Oneal masquerades as Ruben Studdard in a bit that will be appreciated by the American Idol fanatics. While there is no subtitling, the closed captioning picks up all the profanity.

Extras Grade: C+

 

Final Comments

A typically unfunny roast that's way too soft on Leary. The transfer's fine, and there's some decent outtake footage, but worth a rental only.

 


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