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Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star
Reviewed by: Linsey Milillo
Genre: Comedy
Video: 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen
Audio: English Dolby Digital 5.1, French Dolby Digital 5.1
Languages English, French, Spanish
Subtitles Spanish, French
Length 98 min
Rating PG-13
Release Date 02/17/2004
Studio Paramount Home Video
Commentary: Yes (one with director Sam Weisman, one with writers David Spade and Fred Wolf
Documentaries: None
Featurettes: “The True Hollywood Story”, “Pencil Dickie: Writing the Story”, “Behind Child Stars on Your Television” “Comedy Central’s Comedy Reel”
Filmography/Biography: None
Interviews: None
Trailers/TV Spots: Yes
Alternate/Deleted Scenes: Yes 9 deleted scenes
Music Video: Yes
Other: None
Cast and Crew: David Spade, Alyssa Milano, Jon Lovitz, Rob Reiner
Written By: David Spade and Fred Wolf
Produced By: Sam Weisman
Directed By: Blair Breard, Adam Sandler, Tom McNulty, Jack Giarraputo, Fred Wolf
Music: Christophe Beck, Waddy Wachtel, Marc Ellis
The Review:

I will always miss David Spade’s antic with deceased actor Chris Farley; however, Spade is really starting to come into his own as a writer/actor. His latest film, Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star, is definitely worth a watch. As usual with these types of comedic films, I was a little apprehensive when I began to watch it. I was hoping that it would not turn into a crude and just plain silly comedy like Spade’s previous effort, Joe Dirt. I was pleasantly surprised.***

This film follows the rise and fall of former child actor, Dickie Roberts. Roberts’ career has never been the same since his childhood sitcom has been cancelled. He is out of work and money, desperately seeking the film that will lead to his career comeback. The opportunity finally presents itself with a new film by Rob Reiner; however, before Roberts can snag the part he must find a family and experience a “normal” childhood.***

I loved all of the cameos in this film. Many real life former child stars such as Corey Feldman, Dustin Diamond (Saved by the Bell’s Screech) and Barry Williams (a.k.a. Greg Brady) make memorable appearances. Other stars such as Brendan Fraser and Tom Arnold also take part in the film. Despite these cameos and Spade’s comedic moments, the film ends up having another purpose, helping Roberts find his way, learn to help others, and eventually to establish a family of his own.

Image and Sound: The DVD formatting is clear, enhancing the film’s color and other special feature packaging. The deleted scenes are a bit grainy at times. The DVD’s sound is good and clear, noting that dialogue and music (when used) is undisturbed.
The Extras: This DVD is packed with extras. There are 9 deleted scenes; all are worth a viewing. One of the highlights of these extras is the former child stars music video. If you can think of a child star, he/she is probably in there. There is also a feature of the making of this video, very funny and entertaining. “Pencil Dickie” gives the viewer more insight into the creation of this character, aspiring comedic writers should check this out. One aspect of the film I enjoyed and that is extended here in the extras is the “True Hollywood Story” of Dickie Roberts. I enjoy watching E! and this feature captures the magic of the THS and gives it a new spin a la Spade style.
Commentary: There are two different commentaries. The first is with director Sam Weisman; the second is with writer/actor David Spade and writer/producer Fred Wolf. I enjoyed watching these because the viewer is able to get more background about the making of the film and its creative inspiration. I prefer the second commentary with the writers. I was interested to learn more about the writing inspiration and how it came to fruition to me made into this entertaining film.
Final Words: This film is a keeper. I really enjoyed watching it and I think other viewers will too. It is a light hearted, fun filled movie with a deeper meaning. Spade and the rest of the cast are hysterical. The extras are great and enhance the DVD. I especially recommend the music video of former child stars. It’s a hoot.

 

 
 
 
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