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Sony Music presents
The Offspring: Huck It (2000)

"Day after day/Your whole life's a wreck/The powers that be/Just breathe down your neck"
- The Offspring, All I Want

Review By: Dale Dobson   
Published: February 26, 2001

Stars: The Offspring: Dexter Holland, Noodles, Greg K, Ron Welty
Other Stars: Jim Rippey, Noah Johnson
Director: Paul Cobb

Manufacturer: DVSS
MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (language)
Run Time: 00h:39m:13s
Release Date: December 12, 2000
UPC: 074645024097
Genre: alternative


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

DVD Review

Columbia Music Video (in association with Sony Music) brings a popular punk/thrash/grunge band to DVD with the release of The Offspring: Huck It, a look at the band and its members Dexter Holland, Noodles, Greg K and Ron Welty.

These guys are having a lot of fun, bringing a Nirvana-like sense of melodic structure into the beat-driven world of punk music. Their lyrics are angry but not irresponsibly so, and they come up with a few inspired rhymes in their successful efforts to carry on the grand tradition of head-banging social criticism. Musically, The Offspring are a lot sharper and more disciplined than many punk bands current and past, and that is saying something in this case.

Unfortunately, the Huck It DVD doesn't do much to enhance one's appreciation of the band. It consists of a number of energetic live concert clips, interspersed with "Meet ..." segments purporting to introduce us to the members of the group. The visual presentation features key elements of the cover art from the albums Conspiracy of One and Americana, but it's rife with music video clichés including fisheye lenses, scratchy animated text, time-lapse cloud footage, negative images and color manipulation. There's almost no attention devoted to the group's history, philosophy or working process; instead, we're treated to extensive footage of the band members engaging in extreme sports: snowboarding, parachuting, slicing golf balls indoors, drinking and reciting poetry, BMX power-assisted jumping, and other dangerous stunts. I don't mean to suggest that the guys shouldn't indulge in these kinds of activities, but the emphasis here tends to reduce the band's instrumental tracks to something like videogame background music. This is not a good thing (notwithstanding the band's effective soundtrack contribution to Sega's coin-op hit "Crazy Taxi") and it tends to make the disc much less interesting to watch than it might have been.

So I'm pointing the finger at the DVD-Video presentation itself as the ultimate shortcoming here—while the disc contains a number of solid tracks by The Offspring, the visual accompaniment is eye candy at best with little of substance to recommend it. Given that the disc lacks comprehensive song chapter-stops, I have to suggest that one's interest in The Offspring would be better served by an old-fashioned CD or two.

Rating for Style: D+
Rating for Substance: C-

 

Image Transfer

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


Image Transfer Review: The Offspring: Huck It is presented in its original made-for-video 1.33:1 full-frame aspect ratio. Grain, noise and a general softness are evident in many segments, with some material shot on film but transferred to video for editing, and black level is generally on the light side, though color is solid. Fairly typical video-originated material, mastered cleanly enough on DVD.

Image Transfer Grade: C+

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
Dolby Digital
5.1
Englishyes
PCMEnglishyes


Audio Transfer Review: The DVD features two soundtracks, a linear PCM 48k stereo track and a Dolby Digital 5.1 mix. The PCM track is louder, a bit cleaner, and preferable in many ways to the 5.1 track, which features minimal live concert ambience and is marred by gimmicky surround usage. Bass and frequency range are solid and the audio is well-engineered overall, but there are no DVD-specific advantages over the band's CD recordings.

Audio Transfer Grade: B

 

Disc Extras

Animated menu with music
Scene Access with 12 cues and remote access
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extra Extras:
  1. Bonus Track: The Kids Aren't Alright
  2. Meet the Crew
  3. Random Outtakes
Extras Review: The Offspring: Huck It on DVD features 12 chapter-stops (individual song stops aren't really provided, contrary to packaging claims), nicely animated menus with music, and about fifteen minutes' worth of extra video features:

Bonus Track: The Kids Aren't Alright:

An extra live performance clip, unused for some reason in the main presentation.

Meet the Crew:

This loosely-structured introduction to a few of The Offspring's roadies, technicians and fans is the most genuinely entertaining segment on this disc—goofball concertgoers and crew members alike seem to be having a good time.

Random Outtakes:

As advertised, a selection of extended scenes and bits of extra footage, most oriented around the extreme stunts performed by the band members. Mildly interesting at best.

Extras Grade: D+

 

Final Comments

The Offspring: Huck It features the grunge/thrash band in a variety of settings but doesn't convey much information about the group or the music. The DVD is presented well enough, but the content isn't compelling. For The Offspring completists only.

 


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