'Walking Tall: Special Edition' [Blu-ray]
(Dwayne Johnson, Johnny Knoxville, Neal Mcdonough, Kevin Durand, Ashley Scott, et al / Blu-ray / PG-13 / (2004) 2018 / MVD Visual)
Overview: A former U.S. soldier returns to his hometown to find it overrun by crime and corruption, which prompts him to clean house.
Blu-ray Verdict: Dwayne Johnson does what he does best here, kicking butt and taking no nonsense from anybody (yeah, had to tone down the language here). You know exactly what you will get from a movie like this, and the movie, story and actors all deliver exactly as you would expect.
That being said, then don't get me wrong. I am not saying that 'Walking Tall' is a boring movie, far from it actually. It is an entertaining movie for what it is; a straight forward, generic and predictable action movie. And the emphasis is on action here, because there is a lot of it throughout the entire movie. You just simply lean back and unhook your mind and enjoy the ride.
The story is about a former military guy named Chris (played by Dwayne Johnson) who returns to his hometown, only to find it very changed. The small town has fallen into a downward spiral fueled by drugs and gambling. Chris decides to take matters into his own hands and weed out the bad seeds.
Yet what makes this remake a little disappointing is that the emotional impact that made the original movie so popular during the '70s is entirely absent from this 2004 movie.
While the original movie effectively used disturbingly violent scenes and on-screen tragedy to incite the viewer to sympathize with the plight of Bufford Pussner, the remake - even with its own display of incessant violence - doesn't seem to generate the same effective emotional empathy with the Chris Vaughn character.
That said, this 'Walking Tall' actually does have some well-cast actors on the cast list, including Dwayne Johnson, Neal McDonough and Kevin Durand. Johnny Knoxville, well, sorry, but not so much (ever!)
As for the array of special features here, well, the Audio Commentary from Dwayne Johnson runs out of gas about halfway through, but the one from the trio of worker bee's (Director, Editor and Director of Photography is stellar, and so highly informative from moment number one! The Deleted Scenes, as always, we know why they were left out once we've seen them, but the Bloopers are a fun two minutes to get lost in!
So, if you enjoy a good action movie that is fast paced and can be watched even if severely hung over and just need something that your mind doesn't need to be present for, then 'Walking Tall' (2004) is a good choice. This is a Widescreen Presentation (2.35:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:
Audio Commentary by Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson
Audio Commentary by Director Kevin Bray, Editor Robert Ivison, and Director of Photography Glen MacPherson
"Fight the Good Fight" Stunts Featurette (SD)
Deleted Scenes (SD)
Alternate Ending (SD)
Original Theatrical Trailer (HD)