Another film adaptation of a television series…another disappointment. The “good ole boys” who never mean no harm get a modern makeover, but, unfortunately, sleazy content and bad character adaptations ruin the experience. The popular television series of the same name serves as the source for this below average movie, which is full of stale stereotypes and a paper-thin story. The story has no tension, which keeps the tone light for the audience. It’s too bad moviemakers don’t take full advantage of the tone.
Most of the situations are not very funny (racially motivated jokes about the confederate flag, “black face” and “Appalachian Americans”) or entertaining except for the closing credit bloopers and top-notch stunt work. The climactic car race and police chase in Atlanta reinforce the reasoning for an Oscar® category for stunt work (it would be the only chance this movie has at winning an Academy Award, that’s for sure).
Johnny Knoxville (TV’s Jackass) and Seann William Scott (American Pie) play Luke and Bo Duke as bumbling idiots/thrill seeking daredevils, instead resourceful, well-meaning outlaws defending their family farm, owned by Uncle Jeese, played by Willie Nelson. Boss Hogg, played by Burt Reynolds, doesn’t resemble much of the original character and his sheriff Roscoe is a much more menacing character.
Jessica Simpson reduces Daisy to a one-dimensional character (even admitting it in her dialogue) who uses her sex appeal as a distraction to conveniently help her cousins throughout the story. Cooter and Sheev also help the Duke boys as Cletus helps Boss Hogg, but has absolutely no defining personality. The Dukes’ car, The General Lee (completely updated with a “hemee” engine), has more personality than many of the characters.
Overall, another disappointing TV adaptation that goes a bit too far with references and innuendos (that’s why there’s also an unrated version available). Not recommended (* out of four stars) and rated PG-13 for sexual references, language, action violence, drug references and crude humor.
Copyright © Michael Siebenaler