Angry Boys (Blu-ray) (2011)
Menu Animation & Audio
Featurette-Behind The Scenes
Music Video-S.mouse music videos
Music Video-S.mouse live in concert
Trailer-Summer Heights High, We Can Be Heroes, and Angry Boys
|Year Of Production||2011|
|Running Time||992:53 (Case: 712)|
|RSDL / Flipper||
Multi Disc Set (4)
|Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||
Roadshow Home Entertainment
Kristin Dione Metoyer
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||English DTS HD Master Audio 5.1 (2304Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.78:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Following on from the highly successful Summer Heights High and We Can be Heroes was always going to be a difficult task for creator, writer and actor Chris Lilley. With expectations so high after a number of cleverly released teasers, Lilley had to deliver and deliver quickly. From the first episode of this "fly on the wall" mockumentary however it was clear that this outing was not going to be a quickly rewarding and easily digestible comedy, but something that was either going to build momentum, or crash badly. Having an unusually extended run of twelve episodes however might have given us a clue that Lilley had something more substantial in mind – something that earlier successes and subsequent funding confidence allowed.
Initial critical and popular reviews were mixed, with an underlying negative tone mostly relating to the rather dark, crude but subtle, and often very politically incorrect humour. In a break from traditional TV premieres Lilley also structured the earlier episodes to gradually introduce his main characters of twins Nathan and Daniel (former We Can Be Heroes characters), Gran, S.mouse, Blake, and Jen. This plot decision enabled a more substantial initial exploration of the characters, however also polarised opinion in that many viewers wanted to experience a taste of all the characters quickly. Worst of all, many found the initial episodes just not funny enough to warrant persevering with. In my opinion those who dropped off made a big mistake, and really should have another look at the message that Lilley was delivering. Although Summer Heights High had levels of social consciousness, it was primarily written for laughs. Angry Boys however had a converse motive - to tackle a serious social phenomena and to hopefully make you think about yourself and the characters you might recognise. If you found it funny as well then that was a bonus. For what it's worth I found much of the material hilarious – in a perverted kind of way.
Episode One (28:20)
Nathan and Daniel Sims (Chris Lilley) reprise their role from We Can Be Heroes as the bored bogan twins from Dunt in country South Australia. Nathan is virtually deaf and his condition is getting worse which leads to much frustration in the household. The boys' father died some years ago and Daniel and Nathan's dream is to take over the family farm in their father's stead when old enough. Kerry (Deborah Jones) is a patient and tolerant mother to the boys and their younger siblings, but tensions rise when her boyfriend Steve (Greg Fairall) moves in. Steve is a decent bloke but can't replace the boys' father, and they resent him for it. Best mate to the two lads is "Black" Daniel (Thomas Baxter), a local indigenous boy. It is telling that despite all the outwardly racist banter Daniel is not offended & is like another brother to the two Sims. Nathan and Daniel are proud of their "wall of legends" in the bedroom where pictures of their father, Ruth Sims (Gran - the boys' grandmother), S.mouse (black US rapper) and Blake Oakfield (former surf champ) hang in pride of place.
Gran (Chris Lilley) is an officer at the Garingal Juvenile Justice Centre. Although a mother figure to the boys in detention, she is foul mouthed and has idiosyncrasies that could be considered cruel and racist. For example she organises a soccer game between the light skins and dark skins and plays a "gotcha" game by tricking an inmate into believing he is about to be released. Gran lives at the detention centre with fellow warder Penny (Alison Roy) and her much loved pet guinea-pigs.
Episode Two (28:18)
American rapper S.mouse (Chris Lilley) is living under house arrest with his affluent father on the proceeds from his first hit single. Life is pretty plush for S.mouse with a luxurious mansion and upsized SUV. Despite his privileged background S.mouse models himself as the "voice of his generation". His father Shwayne Senior (Richard Lawson) however is less than impressed with his son's latest efforts, faux gangster attitude, and his layabout lifestyle with friend Danthony (Clyde Boraine). A video film clip of his single Poo On You where S.mouse defecates on a police car had left the rapper in trouble and is the reason for the two month house arrest.
Meanwhile back in Dunt Nathan is recommended to a deaf school in Adelaide, hundreds of miles away from his family. Although the two fight relentlessly Daniel is upset at the potential loss of his brother.
At Garingal new inmate Talib (Jake Glass) has been incarcerated for interfering with a dog. This results in merciless bullying however Gran intervenes and takes him under her wing. Probably due to past traumas Talib doesn't speak at all although he is not physically mute.
Episode Three (27:33)
Nathan is due to leave for the deaf school so Daniel decides to host a farewell party in his honour. Gran is asked to invite to the party "legends" S.mouse, Blake, and Emily Chase (hot pin-up girl). Blake Oakfield (Chris Lilley) is a former champion surfer from Narmucca Bay where he now spends his time as leader of the surf gang he founded when kids - the "Mucca Mad Boys". Blake lost a testicle in a gang fight with the "Mucca Boys" beach rivals - the "Fennel Hell Men". This lead to his retirement from the surfing circuit and current sedentary lifestyle. His pregnant wife Kareena (Sarah Sutherland) does all of the work including looking after two kids while Blake lazes around, only stirring to defend Narmucca beach against occasional skirmishes from the "Fennels".
S.mouse decides that he needs to get edgier to regain street credibility so releases an online music video called Grandmother F*cker. This angers Shwayne Senior no end and also causes S.mouse's record company to drop him due to complaints from the public. S.mouse's girlfriend Lasquisha (Kristin Dione Metoyer) announces that their relationship is one of convenience with which S.mouse agrees.
Episode Four (27:13)
Nathan has been downloading internet porn and masturbating obsessively so Daniel comes up with a novel solution involving plastic bottles. One of Nathan's objects of desire, Emily Chase, can't make the farewell party so Gran is asked to invite Japanese skateboard champion Tim Okazaki (Jordan Dang) instead.
Tim is renowned as the world's first gay skateboard champion and is a huge star in Japan. His mother Jen (Chris Lilley) is his manager and totally devoted to his career – at the expense of the rest of the family including his two siblings. Although moving to America when Tim was a child, Jen decides that Tim's career will advance better on return to Tokyo if marketed as Japanese and gay – even though Tim actually speaks with an American accent and likes girls, not boys. Jen also runs a successful business centred around Tim called "GayStyle Enterprises" which manufactures various p****-shaped household objects and everyday items.
Episode Five (27:33)
S.mouse is working on a new album while on house arrest in his home studio with Danthony as album producer. His new single is to be titled Big Black Balls with backing vocals by Rihanna. Lasquisha however wants to provide backing vocals herself and subsequently makes S.mouse an offer he can't refuse.
A deaf family visits the Sims to help Nathan in his transition to the deaf school. Nathan uses this diversion as an opportunity to prank Daniel whose attempts at revenge fail miserably.
Meanwhile Jen obsessively makes Tim do fitness training which just exacerbates his fatigue and depression.
Episode Six (27:37)
Blake has been getting justifiably nagged by Kareena to do some work and so in response decides to start a surf school for fat kids with his mate Hunter (Paul Pearson).
Back in Dunt Daniel is left in charge of the kids while mum and Steve take a well-deserved weekend away from home. During an impromptu party at the house Nathan gets stuck in a drainpipe which requires the return of mum and Steve to cut him out. The boys also learn to their dismay that the pair are now engaged to be married.
Back at Garingal Talib continues to be the butt of continuous bullying and has remained mute since arrival. Gran tries to draw the boy out of his depression by encouraging him to sing at the weekly song night and letting him feed her guinea pigs. After losing patience with Talib Gran gets angry and is later forced to apologize. This seems to crack the wall in Talib's emotions and he speaks for the first time since in detention.
Episode Seven (27:20)
Tim's depression and tiredness are worrying Jen because his skateboarding performances are slipping. Jen decides a "gay dog" will cheer him up and also add to the franchise value. Who could resist a cute gay Japanese skateboarder with a gay dog who can also skate?
S.mouse is reduced to playing for little kids and so tries out his new material including Slap My Elbow. The preschoolers are monumentally disinterested and S.mouse is mightily discouraged. After checking his popularity at a nearby mall and finding that it has reduced to nil, S.mouse realises that something needs to change. As a response to skipping house arrest for the day S.mouse is fitted with an electronic ankle monitor that will electrocute him if he exits the house gates.
Daniel is forced by mum to spend a day with the local homosexual kid Henry in response to his continuous use of the term "fag". This is meant to be a learning experience for Daniel who is none too happy with the arrangement. After hanging out together Daniel finds, much to his surprise, that he and Henry actually get along pretty well. What's more Henry (being gay) has access to all the good looking girls at school which impresses Daniel's other mates who suddenly take a shine to their new chum.
Episode Eight (28:07)
It's family day at Garingal however Talib's mother doesn't turn up and he has no visitors. Talib confides to Gran that his mother hates him, and Gran has her own fears revealed.
Blake's old mate Ashley (Christian Stack) has been released from prison and takes up an offer to stay at Blake's place. Ashley borrows Blake's van with the intension of getting revenge on the Fennels with the outcome leaving a Fennel gang member in intensive care after being shot. The police have Blake as the top suspect as his van was seen at the scene even though he was at home at the time.
Nathan's success with the girls leads Daniel to try and impersonate him while asking out the local video shop assistant. His ruse fails hopelessly however.
Episode Nine (26:59)
Tim has had enough of Jen's interference and spits the dummy during filming for a commercial. Jen is furious when she finds out that Tim has been secretly dating a girl thereby destroying his image as a gay skater.
Blake has been in custody after the shooting incident but is released on bail only to find that Kareena has had enough of his lazy habits and useless friends. She finally leaves home with the children and moves to Sydney. Blake is devastated by this and so Hunter organises a Mucca boys party to cheer him up. Kareena's leaving seems to jolt Blake into realising that he has to change his ways or lose everything and so he decides to re-enter the surfing tour and also undergo a testicle transplant.
Daniel finds that Nathan has run away from home and in a panic enlists Black Daniel to use his tracking skills to find his brother. When the trail leads to a lake Daniel assumes the worst. Nathan in fact doesn't want to leave home and go to the deaf school and so has been hiding at the house. As per usual Nathan gets the last laugh on Daniel with a particularly amusing prank.
Episode Ten (27:53)
Daniel and Black Daniel try to entice S.mouse to come to their party by sending him a fictitious story about an Aboriginal kid called Wally who got crushed by a truck. Mum and Steve get married at the Sims home with Daniel and Nathan and mates providing the entertainment. Nathan again shows his pranking ability at the reception.
S.mouse is caught on film by a paparazzi helicopter during the filming of promotions for his new album The Real Me. His shirtless image is subsequently uploaded online where he is accused of becoming fat. Lasquisha won't be associated with a fat rapper and so dumps him. The e-mail from Daniel about Wally the fictitious accident victim reaches S.mouse and Danthony.
Talib is accused of killing Gran's favourite guinea pig Kerri-Ann and, after a fight with another inmate, is placed in isolation. After another inmate in isolation attempts suicide using sheets provided by Gran, Talib is removed from isolation. The number of avoidable incidents involving Gran seems to be increasing so the head officer suggests that Gran may have to retire.
Episode Eleven (27:34)
Gran is forced to retire from Garingal on medical grounds and is farewelled with a surprise party thrown by the inmates. Leaving Talib and her special friend Penny is difficult for Gran, but moving in with the Sims at Dunt is a positive outcome. Preparations are in progress for Nathan's farewell party but then the boys learn that Gran had forgotten to send the invitations to the boys "legends".
Following Tim's blow-up with Jen and the announcement that he is not really gay, sales of GayStyle merchandise have plummeted and his Ooishi Cola advertising contract has been cancelled. Jen leaves home and tries to blackmail Tim into renouncing his new straight lifestyle. Tim calls her bluff however and announces that she has been sacked as manager.
S.mouse's new album is not well received and he has the sudden realisation that The Real Me is in fact a fabrication, as he is faking the rapper attitude, poor background, and ghetto lifestyle. In response he writes a non-rap song about Wally the aborigine called Squashed Nigga.
Episode Twelve (28:03)
S.mouse decides to change his image and name back to Shwayne Jnr. His home arrest is now over and Shwayne Snr declares it's time for S.mouse to stop acting as a ghetto black but get out and work a real job. On hearing Squashed Nigga on the radio Shwayne Snr is for the first time pleased with what his son has achieved.
Blake is finally cleared from the shooting charges and has his testicle transplant. With his confidence restored the Fat Boys Surf school is reopened and he is determined to go back on the surfing tour. Kareena is also now back home with the kids and their new baby.
Tim and the Okazakas have returned to California with separate living arrangements for Tim - away from Jen and the rest of the family. His skating has moved ahead since dumping Jen as manager, and now Jen is devoting her time to raising her second son as the next Tiger Woods.
Nathan is soon to leave home so Daniel takes him on a final tour of Dunt, including visiting a tree that has special meaning for the boys. Because of Gran's forgetfulness it seems that the farewell party won't have any "legends" attending and so the party starts on a sombre note. The boys are interrupted from burning their plans for running the farm by some late party visitors.
Angry Boys - Special Edition Blu-ray includes two discs containing the twelve episodes with some extras, and a further two discs of extras.
The video is presented in MPEG-4 AVC high definition 1080p 1.78:1 widescreen. Being filmed in a pseudo documentary style for TV meant that the overall quality is not on a par with big studio productions, nevertheless there is nothing to complain about here with clean and vibrant colours and good blacks. Skin tones are accurate although S.mouse's colour (intentionally I think) looks obviously fake. There were no significant artefacts that I noticed with the only issues being in dimly lit scenes such as S.mouse in the nightclub. Given the nature of the material this is a very good presentation overall.
A DTS Master Audio 5.1 audio track encoded at around 2,000 Kb/s is the only offering but is a very acceptable effort for this type of presentation. All the dialogue is clear and synchronised with the video. The surrounds weren't used extensively - but then they weren't necessary either as the sound is very dialogue orientated. The subwoofer was only evident during the S.mouse musical interludes where it produced a nice doof doof. The English subtitles appear accurate and are easy to read. Given the pseudo-documentary style of presentation and the emphasis on dialogue this audio track is suitably clear and problem free.
|Surround Channel Use|
The menu on both episode discs includes episode navigation which displays clips from the series and a short text synopsis of the episode. Very nicely done. The two extras discs are similar in style and navigation.
1.78:1 aspect ratio with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio at 256 kb/s. Twelve behind the scenes clips showing scene set-ups, filming decisions, post production, and discussion with cast and production team including Lilley out of character. A must watch.
1.78:1 aspect ratio with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio at 256 kb/s. Twelve behind the scenes clips of a similar style to those included in disc one. Again a must watch.
1.78:1 aspect ratio with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio at 256 kb/s. Forty three (yes that's right) deleted scenes featuring Daniel and Nathan. There is a play all option.
1.78:1 aspect ratio with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio at 256 kb/s. Fifty six (!) deleted scenes featuring Gran. There is a play all option.
1.78:1 aspect ratio with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio at 256 kb/s. Forty two deleted scenes featuring S.mouse. There is a play all option.
1.78:1 aspect ratio with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio at 256 kb/s. Twenty nine deleted scenes featuring Blake. There is a play all option
1.78:1 aspect ratio with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio at 256 kb/s. Twenty nine deleted scenes featuring Jen. There is a play all option
1.78:1 aspect ratio with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio at 256 kb/s. Video clips of Slap My Elbow, Animal Zoo, Poo On You, Grandmother F*cker, Squashed Nigga. Hilarious.
1.78:1 aspect ratio with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio at 256 kb/s. Live promotional concert starring S.mouse. Shows more talent than many current music "artists" with no dubbing or auto tune. Very grainy video but well worth a look.
1.78:1 aspect ratio with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio at 256 kb/s. Extended trailers for Summer Heights High, We Can Be Heroes, and Angry Boys.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
Angry Boys Blu-ray has not been released in the U.S. however there are three disc DVD versions available locally and in region 1 and region 2. The region B four disc Blu-ray available in Europe appears to be the same as the local version.
The strength of Angry Boys is in the depth of emotion that lies underneath the surface. Although hinted at earlier it's in the last few episodes that the fractured relationships that have made the boys angry are laid bare. On the surface these characters are foul mouthed, racist, homophobic, lazy, deluded, good for nothing wastrels. Underneath they are despairing, unhappy, and desperately lost boys who have yet to become real men. Along with the boys we also have Gran who has a shared secret and a hidden ailment which could mean the end of her career. She is mother to a host of angry boys and treats them all equally with firm love, and sometimes misplaced humour. It is for practical, not racist reasons that she separates the footy team into dark and light skins. To her they are all just boys – not blacks or whites. Nathan and Daniel prank each other mercilessly but it takes the possibility of Nathan leaving to illuminate the realisation that they need each other, and each in turn fills the void left by their dead father. Blake is convinced that losing a testicle has taken away his manhood, and uses that as an excuse for never leaving childhood and assuming adult responsibility. S.mouse enjoys a privileged lifestyle and yet tries to portray a poverty ridden ghetto image – much to his father's contempt. We have the skater Tim whose identity has been manufactured by an overbearing mother, and the bullied inmate Talib who only has Gran that cares about him. I don't think that it's a coincidence that none of the angry boys have a strong and supportive father figure in their lives.
Angry Boys has heart and soul which cannot be appreciated through casual viewing. Each episode builds on to the next until the final climax where, thankfully, hopes for a better future appear. Those viewers tempted by the slick promotions and looking for easy laughs should look elsewhere. Although often hilarious the subject matter, dialogue and themes are confronting and sometimes uneasy viewing. That Lilley could pull this all together is a triumph of his perception, writing and acting skills – although others might disagree. Fortunately the supporting cast are also excellent although perhaps some of the younger members who are mostly amateurs are a bit wooden at times. Extras are extensive although an audio commentary from Chris Lilley would be highly desirable for future releases. Overall Angry Boys is highly recommended for those who like their comedy with a bit of grit and substance.
The video quality is very good.
The audio quality is very good.
The extras are very good.
|DVD||Denon DVD-3910 and Panasonic BD-35, using HDMI output|
|Display||Panasonic TH-58PZ850A. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL).|
|Amplification||denon AVR-4311 pre-out to Elektra Theatron 7 channel amp|
|Speakers||B&W LCR600 centre and 603s3 mains, Niles in ceiling surrounds, SVS PC-Ultra Sub, Definitive Technology Supercube II Sub|