Posted in: Disc Reviews by David Annandale on June 28th, 2005
Hilary Duff plays a good-hearted by scatterbrained teenager. Her happy existence in NYC is disrupted (how many Disney teens has this happened to?) when her stepfather starts his new job as head of a military academy, and she is enrolled, willy-nilly. She has trouble fitting in, initially having as nemesis her Captain Christy Carlson Romano, but eventually both she and the institution adapt to each other.
It’s Legally Blonde meets Private Benjamin in this sorry exercis…. What with the ongoing inconvenience in Iraq, the US Army is having trouble meeting its recruitment goals. Disney has stepped in to the rescue with this paen to discipline and duty and the joys of stifling your individuality to do what you’re told. Join up now, kids, at least all that training will spare you from having to watch such painful made-for-TV pap as this.
This is 5.1? Yup, and a pretty boring track it is. The rear speaker volume is very low, even when it comes to the inevitable soundtrack pop ditties, which come across as a bit thin in consequence. The environmental effects are close to non-existent. The sound is clear enough, but one should expect more.
The picture is even worse, in that it isn’t even as decently clear. The grain goes from irritating to terrible, the colours have a tendency to shimmer (and aren’t as stable as they might be), and the image is soft. A poor television transfer.
Sorry Duff fans, she is not on the commentary track. You have to make do with supporting cast members Romano and Aimee Garcia pointing out the obvious. Duff does show up in the “Learning the Drills” featurette, which is all about how the cast had to learn proper military marching and the like. The “Drill Team Challenge” is a physical activity game (teams race to jump to position at Reveille and the like) that is more than a little insidious. Finally, along with the trailers there’s a party planner as a DVD-ROM feature. The menu is scored.
Blechhh. Looks ugly, sounds boring, and is a total (and reprehensible) waste of time.
Special Features List
- Audio Commentary
- Making-of Featurette
- Drill Team Challenge
- DVD-ROM Party Planner