DVD Review: The Full Monty: The Fully Exposed Edition.

The Full Monty: The Fully Exposed Edition
Fox Home Entertainment

I spent the evening with six blue collar guys who are willing to take it all off. How’s that for an intro?

The Full Monty is set in scruffy Sheffield, England; and features six unemployed steel workers, each one desparate for a steady paycheck and a better life. There’s Gaz (Robert Carlyle), a divorced father unable to meet his child support payments; his best mate Dave (Mark Addy), a teddy bear of a man who is convinced his wife would prefer sharing a bed with Mr. Universe; Gerald (Tom Wilkinson), once a mill foreman, who can’t bring himself to tell his well-heeled wife he’s been ot of work for six months; and Lomper (Steve Huison), a suicidal fellow who cares for his sickly mother and plays in a brass band. With nothing much to lose, this group of average Joes are inspired by a touring Chippendales-style show to create a one-night-only striptease act of their own, whip the ladies into a frenzy, and rake in some easy cash…which naturally turns out to be not-so-easy cash. Horse (Paul Barber)–a middle aged gentleman who can do the funky chicken and the bump, and Guy (Hugo Speer)–whose audition consists of dropping his pants, to reveal his sizable “talent”–are added to the lineup; mayhem, scandal, and hilarity ensue.

The Full Monty was recognized with a Best Picture Oscar nomination in 1998, an unusual feat for a dark comedy. The ensemble cast is excellent, the humor is refreshingly bleak (and fart-joke free!), and the g-strings are utterly appalling…all in all, it is impossible to imagine a more charming film that culminates in six somewhat ungainly men getting naked. There is much here to make the ladies smile, and to assure the men we like ’em just the way they are. (I’d certainly choose any of these chaps over some silly, chest-waxing Chippendale, if it came down to that…for I am happily married, and posting this on my husband’s blog site. Hi, dear!)

Bonus features include two commentaries, deleted scenes, featurettes, trailers, and the ability to skip to your favorite musical numbers. I spent a good half-hour transfixed by multiple outtakes from the final shot, where the actors keep getting their tear-away g-strings caught on their police hats (yup, police hats!). Delightful! (I mean, educational… about the inconsistency of velcro when affixed to shiny red spandex…that’s it.) Well worth the price of admission.

Jill Lynch