Wild Things (Blu-ray) (1998)
Unrated Dir: John McNaughton | Sony | 115 min.

Review By: Matt Brighton | January 28th, 2012

Plot: What’s it about?

Blue Bay is one big country club, where the richies play on yachts and divorces out-number marriages. But greed, lust, and betrayal are very evident as well, and WIld Things takes a long, hard look at those elements. I won’t give too much away, as this movie’s sole reason for being is suprise plot turns, well, that and the sex scene between Denise Richards and Neve Campbell. So, to sum it up nice and neat, a popular school-teacher (Matt Dillon) is accused of rape by one of his students (Richards), and during the trial, another student (Campbell) gives a similar story. A investigator (Kevin Bacon) seems to think something is amiss with the whole thing, and gets personally involved in the mess. Campbell is an outcast with a bad reputation, and Richards is a well-thought-of rich girl, so Dillon does not discriminate by social class.

This movie was a pretty big success at the theatre, and it thrived because of hype about it’s shocking plot-twists. Now, had I not heard all the hype before-hand, I might have enjoyed this flick more. But, I went into it expecting a dog of a different color, a truly ground-breaking suspense thriller. While Wild Things is a decent movie, the hype killed this one, setting standards that the movie can’t live up to. Sure, the twists are kinda neat, but by no means that suprising, and after a while, the twists make the movie predictable. Every time things seem to be worked out, you know something’s gonna happen. Explanations are few and far between, but a few segments run during the credits, filling in some of the blanks. Don’t be fooled, this movie is not a no-brainer or anything, but it does not live up to all the press it got while on the big-screen. This new unrated version isn’t all that either, with only a few scant additions to mention. But even so, fans will without a doubt want to add this alternate edition to their collections.

Where this movie does deliver is decent enough acting, and the T&A factor. There is a car-wash scene with Richards and a friend which redefines wet t-shirt scenes, and sets a new standard for playful young twenty-somethings. The actresses do a tremendous job of keeping a youthful, playful tone to the sex scenes, and even the hardest scenes still seem playful and explorative. A movie with a thirty-year old acting seventeen sucks like nothing else, these girls, in their early 20’s, pull of the teen thing nicely. The sex scenes are what made this movie happen, as everyone I talked to about the film first spoke of the Campbell/Richards scene. So, if you are looking for a young T&A movie hiding out as a thriller, pick up WIld Things. It is more than a soft-core porno, just not much more. Also, there is a small role of Dillon’s lawyer, played by Bill Murray, which is a must see!

Video: How does it look?

“Wild Things” is shown in a 2.35:1 AVC HD transfer that looks on par with the standard DVD version. Of course, this version has a bit more in regards to detail (always pertinent when dealing with a threesome, mind you) and colors do seemed a bit improved. The color palette used is very warm and rich as we might expect when the film takes place in Miami. Fleshtones are a bit on the overcooked side, though I feel this is more a result of the filmmakers as opposed to the transfer. All in all, this leaves a bit to the imagination, but not much. A nice effort here.

Audio: How does it sound?

“Wild Things” was an early Blu-ray release and as such we get a PCM uncompressed 5.1 mix. Now there is a definite difference in regards to sound as it sounded much more clean. There’s a jungle montage that really gives a nice seperation of channels and therefore an emcompassing mix. Dialogue is rich and full as well. Surrounds aren’t used quite as much as I’d have liked, but your focus should be on the screen (remember we do have a Neve Campbell and Denise Richards “scene” of sorts, right?) All in all, it’s a nice mix and a noticeable improvement over the standard DVD offering.

Supplements: What are the extras?

This Blu-ray is about as bare as it comes with the movie only.

Disc Features
  • (2.35:1) Aspect Ratio
  • Video Codec: AVC
  • Audio: PCM
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Audio Commentary
  • Deleted Scene(s)
  • Featurette
  • Documentary
  • Digital Copy
  • 1 Disc Set
Wild Things (Blu-ray)