Sandra Bullock is a frumpy FBI agent who glams for an undercover gig at the Miss America pageant in Miss Congeniality (2001). Sadly, while Bullock has great comedy instincts, this flick only "briefly shows signs of life". Critics were less than dazzled, but big box office takings ensured a sequel. So, as Miss Congeniality 2 primps its hair in readiness, the folks at Warner Bros are releasing this so-called "Deluxe" edition DVD.
Bratt And Ball
A CD soundtrack for Miss Congeniality 2 is the big selling point for this DVD, but if you're not into the vocal stylings of Liza Minelli and Spiderbait there's not much else to grab your attention.
Two behind-the-scenes featurettes are billed as documentaries yet each runs at just over five minutes long and are mostly made up of soundbites. For instance, director Donald Petrie pitches the film as "Dirty Harriet goes to the prom" while Bullock reveals that the toughest part of the job is "to walk and talk with breasts that aren't mine". A few outtakes are thrown in to liven things up a bit and, if we're honest, it's difficult not to laugh when Benjamin Bratt gets wrestled to the ground by Bullock, wailing, "She smashed one of my testicles!"
Less amusing are three deleted scenes for which Petrie gives brief introductions. Each plays like a minor entry in Bridget Jones Diary except with Bullock doing some bad hip-hop dancing shtick and getting questioned about her sexual orientation at a family wedding. No need for incontinence pants here.
Bullock shares a commentary with co-writer and long-time collaborator Marc Lawrence, but don't expect anything in the way of insights into story or character. It seems Bullock and Lawrence are just having too much of a good time to bother with such trifling matters (see Two Weeks Notice and Forces Of Nature for further proof). Tragically Lawrence thinks he's hilarious, throwing out lame punchlines like, "Sandy did all of her own eating for this movie." Thankfully Bullock doesn't take herself too seriously, adding, "Yeah, this is a nice double chin shot."
Meanwhile Petrie is unintentionally funny in a separate commentary track. Between long pauses - where you begin to suspect he might have keeled over and died of boredom - he springs back to life and attempts to re-ignite interest with mindless trivia such as, "You may notice that Candice Bergen's hair is two inches longer in this shot than the last shot." If you're reading this, Candice, it's time to take out that restraining order.
Besides 'spot the haircut' with Petrie, you have the option of playing Do You Have What It Takes To Be A Beauty Queen? hosted by William Shatner. Actually Captain Kirk brings a great sense of fun to this multiple-choice questionnaire, which tackles matters ranging from eradicating worry lines to achieving world peace. Unfortunately it's not enough to warrant the Deluxe label on this package. It really is true what they say: never judge a DVD by its cover.