Review Written by: Estefan Ellison
Directed by: Chris Rock
Written by: Chris Rock and Ali LeRoi
Produced by: Chris Rock, Ali LeRoi and Michael Rotenberg
Starring: Chris Rock, Bernie Mac, Dylan Baker, Lynn Whitfield, Nick Searcy, James Rebhorn, Tracey Morgan
Buy it!, Buy it, rent it or skip it: Rent it
So far, every American President has been a white man of Christian faith. Frankly, I'm tired of this repetition and would like so either a female, Jewish or black President. Apparently, comedian Chris Rock has the same opinions as I do on this subject. I usually agree with him on most subjects, which is probably why I enjoy his comedy so much. He has never really been that big of a success on film than on stage, though. He just needs to pick better projects than Pootie Tang
and I'm pretty sure that he will be big. Head of State
represents his directing debut and it's a very funny film, despite it's PG-13 rating barring him from going into some of his usual foul-mouthed jokes.
When a presidential candidate dies on Air Force One, his party has to now choose a new candidate to run against the other candidate, Brian Lewis (Nick Searcy). They choose Mays Gilliam (Chris Rock), a black alderman living in the ghetto. The reason being is, even though he will easily lose, the party will gain the vote of the minority in the next election. Some funny occurances happen including Mays doing a speech in the form of a Chris Rock stand-up act and his ex-girlfriend (Robin Givens) trying many times to get back together with him. Mays also brings in his brother, a bale bondsman (Bernie Mac) to help him out.
As mentioned two paragraphs before, the PG-13 rating keeps Rock from making some of the jokes that make his stand-up comedy so great, but Head of State
is still very fun to watch. Chris Rock looks to be a good comedy director and while I don't see him joining the ranks of Mel Brooks, he still has a good directing career out of him. Mays Gilliam is pretty much Rock if he was running for President of the United States, but we do cheer for him to win the election. The supporting cast also do really good jobs. I don't much care for Bernie Mac, but he is very funny in Head of State
and the bale bondsman is probably my favourite character in the film. He sometimes gets better material than Rock. Watch the interview about NATO for proof of that. This isn't a big-budget film, but I found the colour somewhat off while watching the film, especially in night-time scenes. Nonetheless, it's a fine transfer. The sound is also good and they both get a "B+."
Moving on to special features, we begin with an audio commentary from Chris Rock. He gives a very entertaining commentary and gives a lot of information on making the film, writing it and working with the actors. Rock is very fun here and it is definitely worth a listen. We also get a great short documentary on the making of the film. What is great about it is that it is not at all promotional and gives a look at the inspiration for the film. It's very informative and like the commentary, it should be watched. We also treated to some deleted scenes, which are good that they were deleted, because they're not very good and just slows the film down.
The disc finally ends off with production notes, cast and crew biographies and previews for Walk the Talk
and Biker Boys
. The extras are nice, but don't there could have been more and get a "B" rating. Head of State
is a funny film, but doesn't go beyond that. The commentary is great, but DreamWorks could have added more to the disc which I recommend just renting.