Comic Book: The Movie

DVD Reviews | Mar 4th, 2005

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Starring Mark Hamill, Jess Harnell, Roger Rose, Billy West, Tom Kenny, Lori Alan, Daran Norris, Donna D’Erico and a bunch of cameos!
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Directed By: Mark Hamill
Studio: Miramax
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This movie was made for the fans by the fans of comic books. Mark Hamill directs and stars in this mockumentary film about comic books, their highly dedicated fans and what happens when movie studios get ahold of the rights to comics. Once I saw that this movie was coming out, I had to see it because it looked like a lot of fun. Many comic book readers will enjoy this and this is a perfect look into fandom and conventions.

The film is about comic book fan/high school teacher/documentary filmmaker Don Swan (Mark Hamill) going to the largest comic book convention in the United States and trying to sway movie studio execs (Roger Rose, Lori Alan) into making the original Commander Courage movie instead of the updated version called Codename: Courage. Swan calls up the grandson (Billy West) of the creator of Commander Courage to experience the Comic Con and try to get the movie execs to change their opinion on the old comic book. Filming the documentary is crazy stoner cameraman named Ricky (Jess Harnell) who’s really funny. While all this is happening, the studio execs are trying to get Don Swan off their backs and out of the picture.

Comic Book the Movie basically stars every voice over actor in the business today. Billy West being the biggest name, who has voiced Fry and other characters on Futurama, Looney Tunes, and of course Ren and Stimpy. Jess Harnell is another big voice over artist who has been in every cartoon you can think of. He was doing a dead on Ozzy impression in the documentary and he was super funny. Daran Norris was also another funny voice over actor, who dressed up at the Comic Con as Commander Courage. I was cracking up at the stuff he was doing. It’s great to see these people doing something else besides voice over acting and you get to see who’s behind all those voices. Other voice actors in the film are Tom Kenny (Spongebob), Roger Rose, Debi Derryberry, Jim Cummings (Winnie the Pooh), Maurice LaMarche, and Lori Alan. There was a ton of cameo appearances in the film like Bruce Campbell, Kevin Smith, Stan Lee, Hugh Hefner, Edd Hall, Matt Groening, Sid Caesar, Jonathan Winters and Ray Harryhausen. All of them played themselves because they were at the Comic Con and played along with Mark Hamill as Don Swan. Sid Caesar and Jonathan Winters appeared together for the first time since It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World.

There was a ton of great extras on here. The best one was “Behind the Voices” with the top voices in animation today and it was a panel at the Comic Con. Gary Owens (Space Ghost), Jim Cummings, Daran Norris, Billy West and the rest of the actors I said above were all there doing their voices and talking about the industry and how they got into the biz. I always wanted to get into Voice Overs and they say all you have to do is do your best impressions and put them on a tape and send it to an agency. That’s all I do all day long is do voices from TV Shows and movies, I should definitely try to get into the biz since I’m not doing anything with life now. But anyway, that was a great featurette to include with this DVD. There’s extended interviews with Bruce Campbell, Hugh Hefner, Stan Lee and Kevin Smith. There’s a Commander Courage radio show that Jim Cummings, Gary Owens, and others did at ComicCon in front of the audience that’s funny to listen to. There is plenty of deleted scenes on here and shows some abandoned story lines, more improv from Jess Harnell and other actors in the movie. The way the DVD is set up is cool because it’s like a comic book, and it’s easy to navigate through.

If you are curious about this mockumentary, then I’d say watch it because it’s a funny film like Best In Show and This Is Spinal Tap. The movie itself was fun to watch and so were the extras, and it will put a smile on Comic Geeks’ faces across the country!

n- Audio Commentary with Mark Hamill & Cast
n- “Four Color Frenzy”
n- The Making of Comic Book: The Movie
n- “Behind the Voices” Featurette with the Top Voices in Animation
n- Don Swan Inn-Depth with Kevin Smith
n- Commander Courage Radio Show
n- Stan Lee on Comic Book Movies
n- Don Swan’s Complete Bruce Campbell Interview
n- Hugh Hefner on Comics and Women
n- Deleted Scenes & Bloopers
n- Cast & Crew Biographies

ENGLISH: Dolby Digital 5.1 CC

Standard 1.33:1 Color


Favorite Scenes: Bruce Campbell interview, the guy playing Commander Courage at the Comic Con was funny, and I liked Roger Rose’s movie studio Executive character.
Rating: NR
Running Time: 107 minutes
Extras Rating:
Overall Rating: