The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Studio and Year: Entertainment One - 2013
MPAA Rating: R
Feature running time: 86 minutes
Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio
Subtitles: English, English SDH
Starring: Ryan Kwanten, Peter Dinklage, Steve Zahn, Summer Glau, Margarita Levieva, Jimmi Simpson
Directed by: Joe Lynch
Music by: Bear McCreary
Written by: Kevin Dreyfuss & Matt Wall
Region Code: A,B,C
Blu-ray Disc release Date: April 4, 2014
Fantasy and reality collide on the fields of Evermore when a group of Live Action Role Players inadvertently summon a blood-lusting succubus from the pits of hell. Now three best friends and one incredibly hot babe must prove the are more than just make-believe warriors and become true “Knights of Badassdom”.
Knights of Badassdom follows three best friends (Dinklage, Zahn and Kwanten) and dedicated LARPers (Live Action Role Players) as they take to the woods to reenact a dungeons and dragons-like scenario fresh out of the Middle Ages. Trouble arises after they unwittingly conjure up some serious evil in the form of a blood-lusting Succubus from the pits of hell. And as fantasy and reality collide on the Fields of Evermore in an all-out epic battle of make-believe wizards, demons and assorted mythical creatures, their courage and friendship is put to the test as they attempt to vanquish the evil they have summoned. Will the group prove to simply be foam sword-wielding LARPers or true "Knights of Badassdom?" Art thou ready to find out?
When I read the press release for Knights of Badassdom I chuckled aloud and decided that it had to worth checking out if for nothing else than to see my man Peter Dinklage in a comedic role. I loved him in “Death at a funeral” and his presence along with Steve Zahn and Ryna Kwantan had to be enough to make this fun. Based on the synopsis it should be evident that this isn’t high brow filmmaking nor is it intended to be. It’s a small production built around a shallow premise and minimally developed characters derived from a basic horror/comedy theme. There is a decidedly B-Movie feel to the elements of horror while the laughs are facilitated by the goofy tomfoolery of the three pals who bite off way more than they can chew after inadvertently conjuring up the demon.
Knights of Badassdom isn’t a literal genre film but rather seeks to be the opposite as it offers little explanation and exists on an uneven plane that requires a face value approach. Looking at it in that light may make it more palatable to those that enjoy off handed slapstick and satirical folly. Going into a film like this with expectations of anything more will yield disappointment. I tried to keep it all in perspective and didn’t mind it but truth be told it’s not an especially good film. There are a few chuckles, the throw back type horror is kind of fun and Dinklage doesn’t disappoint. At the end of the day it succeeds at its attempt at low key, frivolous entertainment that would best be viewed when the mood is right perhaps when the gang is over for a few beers.
The rating is for horror violence, language throughout, some drug use and sexuality.
AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65
**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
- Low frequency effects:
- Surround Sound presentation:
- Dialogue Reproduction:
- *Low frequency extension (non-rated element): NA
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
- Black level/Shadow detail:
- Color reproduction:
Knights of Badassdom comes to Blu-ray Disc from Entertainment One featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 28 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 1.7 Mbps.
This video presentation delivered satisfactory overall quality that included appreciable refinement and subtle degrees of delineation that resulted in a gratifying high definition viewing experience. Colors and fleshtones appear natural with ample saturation and vivid textures. Black levels are respectable and depth of field/delineation during low light sequences is rarely a problem. I didn’t detect any noteworthy anomalies or artifacts.
The lossless audio presentation had no trouble conveying the predominantly front loaded elements present in the soundtrack recording. Dialogue reproduction was very good with clear intonation and fair room penetration. The mix did a nice job of handling the various directional cues associated with the camera’s perspective and near field simulation. There is some atmosphere creating sounds mixed to various points in the sound field and the effect is done well. Dynamic range and clarity is fine while low frequency support remains in the upper registers. All in all this made for a very decent audio/video presentation.
- (HD) Peter Dinklage interview
- (HD) Summer Glau hottie montage
- (HD) Steve Zahn interview
- (HD) Dorr-O-Medy 1
- (HD) Dorr-O-Medy 2
- Director Joe Lynch interview
- (HD) San Diego Comic-con panel
- (HD) Theatrical trailer
Knights of Badassdom is a low brow and seemingly haphazard horror comedy that upon closer look may have a bit more to offer in its depiction of D&D LARPer’s and their inadvertent release of an ancient evil. How well it comes across may be entirely dependent upon your tolerance for it’s off handed slapstick and satirical folly. It comes to Blu-ray Disc from Entertainment One featuring solid high definition audio/video quality and a serviceable supplemental offering that is highlighted by a 48 minute Comic-Con panel discussion. Knights of Badassdom can be hit or miss which makes it tough to recommend. I would say that if you’re generally open to films of its type that a rental may just bear fruit.
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