National Lampoon's Animal House: 30th Anniversary Edition 

1978

There's no denying "National Lampoon's Animal House" is a comedy classic. But have you seen it lately? It's not as funny as one remembered it to be upon numerous screenings in decades past, when the "National Lampoon" brand actually meant something. It's still funny "? the line "Thank you, God!" never fails to get me every time "? but its musical numbers bring the thing to a beer-soaked halt.

 

No matter. If you don't yet own it already on DVD, this "30th Anniversary Edition" is tough to resist "¦ provided you can get past its rather unwieldy, shelf-unfriendly packaging "? a cardboard monstrosity in the shape of the Deltas' frat house.

The bonus features on the collegiate comedy's two discs prove a mixed bag. While the feature-length  "Inside Story" documentary is a fun look back populated with talking-head interviews of principals both behind and in front of the camera, the "Where Are They Now?" short is, frankly, embarrassing. With director John Landis at its helm, the bit revisits the Delta alumni (and their gal pals) "? not the actors, mind you, but their characters. It's a fair enough idea, but the result has zero bite "? and (other than seeing how the actors have aged, largely well) pointless, considering the film's end credits provide all the update one really needs.

There's also a slim yearbook included, full of pictures for people who don't like to read about when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor.

"?Rod Lott

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