What's the Worst That Could Happen? (2001)

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Released 12-Feb-2002

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Comedy Main Menu Audio & Animation
Audio Commentary-Sam Weisman (Director) & Producer)
Audio Commentary-Cast
Theatrical Trailer
Music Video-Music-Eric Sermon featuring Marvin Gaye
Deleted Scenes-10
Alternate Ending
Featurette-Scene Stealers
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2001
Running Time 94:24
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (63:53) Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Sam Weisman

Twentieth Century Fox
Starring Martin Lawrence
Danny DeVito
Case ?
RPI $34.95 Music Marc Shaiman

Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.85:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.85:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
English for the Hearing Impaired
Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement Yes, for a hotel chain
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    Anyone who read my recent review of Too Smooth might recall my reference to the movie critic Simon Rose. Mr. Rose devised a list of rules, based on his years as a reviewer, to warn other reviewers about movies based solely on their titles. Here's another one of his rules: 'The longer the title, the worse the film'. While there are some notable exceptions to this rule, What's The Worst Than Can Happen? is not one of them.

    This movie is an example of what can happen in Hollywood. Producers hire a cast of great comedians, and just expect that the movie will be funny. Movies don't make themselves, and weak direction by the inexperienced Sam Weisman, and a very poor script by Matthew Chapman (whose other screenwriting credit is Color Of Night -- say no more), really let the cast down.

    The story is simple: Cat burglar Kevin (Martin Lawrence) gets caught robbing the house of a ruthlessly rich businessman, Max (Danny DeVito). Max ends up robbing Kevin. Kevin, assisted by his friends (including John Leguizamo, Bernie Mac, and Ana Gasteyer), then sets about trying to get even. A battle of egos follows. While Kevin tries to placate his girlfriend Amber (Carmen Ejogo), Max juggles his own wife (Nora Dunn) and girlfriend (Sascha Knopf).

    The movie seems much longer than an hour and a half, and I found myself glancing at my watch a few times. It is laboured, slow and thoroughly disappointing when one considers the talented cast gathered for this production.

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Transfer Quality


    Overall, the quality of the image is a little grainy, but very good. There are a few problems with the source material, as some of the scenes are not properly lit. For example, this poor lighting is evident at 45:47, where the scene has a back-lit appearance.

    The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.85:1 and is 16x9 enhanced.

    The image is beautifully sharp, except for a few scenes, such as the murky shot of Kevin at 67:32. The black level and shadow detail are good, as evidenced by the car interior at 55:56. There is only a hint of edge enhancement occasionally, such as at 76:05.

    The colour is a little dark at times, but overall is very good. Great examples of the beautifully saturated colour include the shiny red Mustang at 8:05, and the colourful shirt at 49:25.

    There are no MPEG artefacts to complain of. Aliasing never became a problem, and there is only the very slightest shimmer on some objects and patterns occasionally. Film artefacts appear infrequently, and mainly take the form of tiny white flecks. Examples can be seen at 18:54 and 43:21.

    There are two sets of English subtitles present on this DVD, and both are accurate.

    This is a RSDL disc, with the layer change placed between Chapters 23 and 24, at 63:53. While it is noticeable, I did not find it disruptive.

Video Ratings Summary
Shadow Detail
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts


    There are three English audio tracks on this DVD: Dolby Digital 5.1, and two audio commentary tracks in Dolby Digital 2.0 surround-encoded audio.

    The dialogue quality and audio sync are good on the default English Dolby Digital 5.1 audio track.

    The musical score is credited to Marc Shaiman and is competent enough. The score has some music themed around the characters, such as Tango music themed around the character Tardio, and some Hip-Hop urban music themed around Kevin.

    Considering that this is a dialogue-based comedy, it did not surprise me to find that the surround sound mix is very front-heavy. The rear speakers are used very subtly for ambience, and are only rarely called upon for serious surround activity. One example of this was when a boat is crashing through some waves at 83:37.

    The subwoofer is also utilised very subtly, but it did add some punch to some of the Hip-Hop music, and to the sound effects, such as the gun shots at 57:55.

Audio Ratings Summary
Audio Sync
Surround Channel Use


    There are plenty of extras.


    An animated menu, presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1, 16x9 enhanced, with Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo audio.

Theatrical Trailer (2:20)

    Fairly standard trailer, presented in an aspect ratio of 1.85:1, 16x9 enhanced, with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio.

Audio Commentary 1

    Director Sam Weisman and Executive Producer David Hoberman provide a fairly competent commentary track.

Audio Commentary 2

    A few of the cast members discuss their characters, and provide some anecdotes. The participants include Danny DeVito, William Fichtner, Bernie Mac, Carmen Ejogo, Sascha Knopf, Nora Dunn, Siobhan Fallon and Glenne Headly.

Music Video

    'Music' by Erick Sermon, and featuring the voice of Marvin Gaye, is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1, non-16x9 enhanced, with Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo audio.

Deleted Scenes

    There are ten deleted and/or extended scenes from the movie. None add anything of substance to the story, and appear to be cut for length -- except for two scenes which include the gorgeous Miss September (Sascha Knopf) topless. As there is no nudity in the final movie, I assume these scenes were cut to get a more family friendly rating. They are all presented in an aspect ratio of 1.85:1, non-16x9 enhanced, with Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo audio.

Alternate Ending

    It is obvious why this one wasn't used.

Outtakes (2:50)

    A few non-funny outtakes presented in an aspect ratio of 1.85:1, non-16x9 enhanced, with Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo audio.

Scene Stealers (23:03)

    Standard making-of advertorial presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1, with Dolby Digital stereo audio.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    This title is to be released on DVD in Region 1 in June 2002.

    The Region 4 DVD misses out on:

    The Region 1 DVD misses out on:

    I would call it even, but personally, I would favour the local release for its affordability, and most importantly, its superior PAL image.


    This movie was a flop at the box-office for good reason. It is a slow and weak comedy, and it is for Martin Lawrence fans only. With so many great titles to choose from on the DVD rental shelves, I imagine that this movie will soon be forgotten.

    The video quality is very good.

    The audio quality is good albeit quite front-heavy.

    The extras are good.

Ratings (out of 5)


© Brandon Robert Vogt (warning: bio hazard)
Wednesday, April 03, 2002
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-535, using S-Video output
DisplayGrundig Elegance 82-2101 (82cm, 16x9). Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationSony STR DE-545
SpeakersSony SS-V315 x5; Sony SA-WMS315 subwoofer

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