Movie Review: Wild Hogs – Starring John Travolta, William H. Macy, Tim Allen & Martin Lawrence

Watch Wild Hogs via Amazon Instant VideoMovie: Wild Hogs (PG-13)
Released: March 2nd, 2007
Runtime: 1 hr. 39 min.
Ticket Price: $5.00 Early Matinee
Refreshments: Swedish Fish
Starring: John Travolta, William H. Macy, Tim Allen and Martin Lawrence
Director: Walt Becker

Rating: Worth a Rental –

Synopsis: Four middle-aged guys leave their mundane, stuck-in-a-rut lives and seek freedom and adventure out on the open road. They take cross-country motorcycle trip and along the way have a run-in with group of badass bikers. Comedy ensues.

Review: Wild Hogs is by no means a great movie. It’s not even a great comedy. What it is though, is a fun ride. Wild Hogs is the story of four suburban guys who have stopped having fun and have gotten used to the way things are. In an attempt to change things up they head out on the open road.

We have Doug, played by Tim Allen (Christmas with the Kranks, TV’s Home Improvement), who is a family man. He has the understanding wife, the boring job as a Dentist and a son he can’t relate to. Next, there is Woody, played by John Travolta (Be Cool, Swordfish), who has been living it up. He married a supermodel, was living in a big house and had a thriving business. Unfortunately, he has lost them all and is flat broke. He doesn’t tell his buddies, but instead throws out the idea of a road trip. Then there is Bobby, played by Martin Lawrence (Big Momma’s House, Bad Boys), who is a plumber that has taken a year off to write a book. His wife wears the pants in the family. His year is up and she wants him to go back to work. She even goes so far as to get him his job back. Lastly we have Dudley, played by William H. Macy (Seabiscuit, The Cooler), who is a computer geek that can’t talk to women.

Woody wants to just get away. Dudley is all for a road trip, as long as they stop at some wi-fi hotspots. Bobby is scared to ask his wife, so he tells her he is at a plumbing convention. After a panic attack Doug’s wife thinks he needs to go with the guys. They have a few problems while camping out, but mostly they are having fun until they get mixed up with a real gang of bikers called the Del Fuegos. The leader of this band of reprobates is Jack, played by Ray Liotta (Smokin’ Aces, Narc). He doesn’t like wannabe bikers and goes about taking Dudley’s bike and sending the group on their way. Woody has had it and goes back for the bike. He loosens the fuel lines on a few of their bikes in the process and when the biker gang goes after them, they inadvertently blow up their bar. Then the chase is on to find the Wild Hogs. Woody neglects to tell his pals what he did and makes up a story of how he got the bike back.

There are a lot of funny parts along the way and some creepy ones, as well. Many of them weren’t in the trailer, which is always a good thing. The audience I saw it with seemed to be having a good time, as did I. One funny part is a small cameo by the American Chopper guys, the Teutuls. Another is the scene where Bobby goes back to his first plumbing job at a convenience store restroom. The counter clerk has some pretty good lines. Also, stick around during the credits, as one of the funniest bits is the spoof that plays while the credits roll.

On the negative side of things was how the movie resolved things at the end. I was sitting there wondering how they were going to tie things up. Obviously, they didn’t have a good ending in mind and pulled something off the Hollywood ending cheat sheet and voila, alls well that ends well. Also, I could have done without the flashes of William H. Macy’s ass.

Wild Hogs sports a tremendous cast that includes: Travolta, Macy, Allen, Lawrence, Liotta, Marisa Tomei (Alfie, My Cousin Vinny), Jill Hennessy (TV’s Crossing Jordan), Stephen Tobolowsky, John C. McGinley (TV’s Scrubs), Kyle Gass (Jack Black’s Tenacious D counterpart) and Peter Fonda (Ghost Rider, Easy Rider). You would expect more from a movie with that much star power. Overall, Wild Hogs is worth waiting for the rental. Sitting at home watching this with a couple of friends and a big bowl of sanely priced popcorn, it will give you a few laughs and all will have a good time.

Have you seen Wild Hogs? What did you think?

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Jason of New Movie Friday
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