Couples Retreat DVD Review
1 Disc Widescreen Edition (2009)
Gina from Haunted Flower reviews the movie “Couples Retreat”, directed by Peter Billingsley and starring Vince Vaughn, Malin Akerman, Jason Bateman, Jon Favreau, and a host of others making up four couples on a vacation retreat for couples counseling. The video consists of my original thoughts fresh from viewing the movie in the theater. Afterwards, I add on my thoughts to the actual DVD release.
Lots of extras on this one! First off, a feature commentary with Vince Vaughn and Peter Billingsley. They also have commentary on the alternate ending, deleted scenes, and extended scenes. Their mind set is that they hit a home run with this one (which I diagree with heartily) but I have to grudgingly admit their DVD sales were inexplicably high. They were outselling “Zombieland”, a FANTASTIC horror comedy. Most of their comments run along the lines of wanting to set up these characters in these positions to all have conflicts progressing along at the same speed even though they were different types and then having FIVE couples seeking resolution at the same time in the last scenes. They apparently had no concept at how ridiculous that sequence felt to me as an audience member jumping back and forth all over the crazy dance floor to these discussions. It’s not right, these are funny guys and I really enjoy a lot of their other movies, but this one was just toxic for me.
There is also a segment called “Paradise Found: Filming in Bora Bora” where they unrelentingly brag about how amazing the weather was there and how they felt “guilty” over getting to film in such a beautiful location since it was like a vacation. (Cough, cough, didn’t I say that this felt like a movie excuse for a vacation??) They have a feature on Tantric Yoga, explaining that it is a real practice (obviously) but that they took it a bit farther for comedy. The yoga scene probably was my favorite scene in the movie. The only laugh line in that movie that has stuck with me means I can turn to the person next to me and say “Boom” and crack up.
The gag reel is pretty funny showing line flubs, the inability to stop laughing and improv gone silly. The alternate ending showed them going home and they decided people wanted to see them have fun on the island since they went through the therapy and that was the correct choice. Most of the deleted/extended scenes clearly didn’t need to be there but I felt one where the guys accidentally ended up at a gay bar before the singles party had some funny moments if it had been edited down tighter for the laughs.
The best part of these extras is “Therapy’s Greatest Hits.” In this section, you get to see all kinds of extended takes with all the therapists where they get very VERY funny, especially Dr. Ken and Mr. Tone Rangers! I laughed more at them just riffing and making up stuff than this ENTIRE movie! Definitely, definitely check out this part of the DVD extras if you find yourself having to buy this film. As in my video though, I still recommend picking up “The Break-Up” instead if you haven’t seen it. It’s a much stronger comedy about the relationships between men and women.