When I first heard of the film Accepted I immediately thought of Camp Nowhere. Both films have a similar plot – that of kids convincing their parents of a fake place that they’re all going to. Accepted is a modern version of the aforementioned film, but lacks the overall humor that Camp Nowhere gave us.
When Bartleby Gaines is turned down by every single college he applied to he decides to make up a sister school to Harmon College simply named South Harmon Institute of Technolog… (read S.H.I.T.). The college campus is located down the road from Harmon in an abandoned psychiatry ward. Everything seems to be running smoothly for Bartleby and his buddies. The parents have all handed them the first 10K semester tuition and the parties seemingly never end. Naturally something has to go wrong, right? Well it turns out that when Bartleby’s best friend Sherman designed the college website, he made the mistake of letting everyone who hit the ‘accepted’ button on the site actually become, um, accepted to the school. What on earth will Bartleby and his buddies do with the sudden influx of students? Why have an endless of amount of parties of course!
As I mentioned above, Accepted, besides the role from Lewis Black, lacks the overall humor that Camp Nowhere had. Sure some of the jokes were funny (most of them coming from Black/Hill), but too many relied on jokes that involved excretions or body parts. And don’t act all surprised that I didn’t find the amazingly unique joke of ‘Ask me about my wiener’ funny at all. The idea that someone would actually believe that it’s part of the history of the sorority to dress up in humiliating costumes is outrageously ridiculous.
The entire plot wasn’t a complete disaster. Some of the characters, particularly Jonah Hill as Sherman and Lewis Black as the Dean, were the two saving graces of the film. Both made the film slightly more entertaining than it could have ever been without the two. What about Justin ‘Mac’ Long you’re asking? His role as Bartleby was serviceable, but I never found myself believing in him. He got exactly what he deserved. He slacked in school, involved himself in next to nothing and was surprised that no school accepted him? Give me a break.
The film had way too many clichés, none of which helped the film. Why on earth would a girl who is going to a successful college suddenly throw away her life to go to S.H.I.T.? If you must watch Accepted, please do yourself the favor and shut off your brain before hand. Otherwise you’ll end up like me and find your head hurting afterward from trying to understand the film.
Arriving in a 1080p, VC-1 Encoded, 1:85:1 widescreen aspect ratio, Accepted, on a HD-30/DVD-9 disc, looks pretty damn good.
Having arrived in theaters less than 5 months ago, Accepted‘s print benefits from being so new. This results in little to no dirt or noticeable grain. Color usage was great with numerous sequences of robust red and bright yellows that certainly helped give the film’s locales a sharper look. Blacks were fantastic, especially in the sequence where the gang invades the psych ward.
Flesh tones were good enough, but I felt they lacked that overall naturalness. I figured with the numerous amounts of skin flying around, we might get a natural skin tone. Besides this little nitpick, Accepted looked amazing throughout. A fine job here Universal.
Presented with the standard Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 available in either English, French or Spanish, I didn’t expect this audio track to contain an overly superb experience; and that was exactly what I received.
Dialogue was fine with no real instance of unintelligible dialogue. Surround usage, while never becoming powerful, was good enough, but I felt that the film could have had a bit more overall ‘oomph’. The film’s soundstage, which never really became lively besides the obvious music sequences, seemed like it was never fully developed. I suppose I’m being overly critical here, but recent other comedy films like You, Me and Dupree and The Grinch had more of a enveloped soundstage that wrapped itself around my head.
Accepted sounds good enough, but could have sounded better. The sound is certainly the sour point of the disc.
We are awarded with a nice amount of features here, including Universal’s U-Control feature.
- Audio Commentary with Director Steve Pink and Actors Justin Long, Lewis Black, Jonah Hill, and Adam Herschman: The same commentary that is found on the HD DVD side of the disc was interesting throughout, especially the comments by Black and Hill (the two graces of the film). Director Steve Pink gives us a bit of insight into the casting and why he wanted to make the film.
- Reject Rejection: The Making of Accepted: In about 10 minutes, we get to see the standard making of fluff that most films have. The various cast members, including Long, interjected giving us a bit of thought here and there.
- Adam’s Accepted Chronicles: Now this was damn funny. In 10 minutes we get to see what it would have been like if the character of Glen, played by Adam Herschman, was accepted to colleges. Funny stuff.
- Deleted Scenes: Feel free to completely skip this one as ZERO of the scenes had any real substance. 90% of them were cut for length issues.
- The Guided Campus Tour: An interactive feature that showcases some of the various campus locations.
- Music Videos: Here we get 2 different music videos from the band The Ringer. The tracks are entitled Hangin’ on the Half Pipe and Keeping Your Heads Up.
- Gag Reel: The standard gag reel. For some reason, I can never find myself ever getting entertained by these. I suppose they would be funnier if I was actually present.
HD DVD Exclusives
Accepted tried to be funny and was decently funny here and there. If the film didn’t rely on such stupid jokes so often, it would have actually been funny. The HD DVD boasts exceptional video, decent audio, and some fine features. I’ll recommend this for fans of either the film, Lewis Black or Hill. The rest should be safe with a rental.
Special Features List
- Audio Commentary
- Reject Rejection: The Making of Accepted
- Adam’s Accepted Chronicles
- Deleted Scenes
- The Guided Campus Tour
- Music Videos
- Gag Reel