New on DVD
'Semi-Pro: Two-Disc Unrated "Let's Get Sweaty" Edition'
Bonus features on the ABA score points for the flat comedy
As mentioned before, the discs offer three chances -- the original theatrical release, uncensored version and digital version -- to see Will Ferrell trotting up and down the court in his 1970s afro-ed glory. Jackie Moon (Ferrell) is the owner, coach and a player for Flint, Michigan's Tropics. This ragtag group that opts for shortcuts and over-the-top promotions over practice and plays is given the chance at a dream: If they finish as one of the top four teams at the end of the season, they'll survive to join the NBA when the merge between two basketball leagues occurs.
DVD Bonus Features:
The Good: "A Short History of the ABA" is a fascinating look at the impact that ABA culture had on the country -- ranging from their outrageous entertainments, the famous red, white and blue basketball, the three-point shot and the dunk, among others. "Re-creating the ABA" shows the lengths to which the cast and crew went to create the authentic '70s league that includes the era's style of playing basketball, the players' looks, the vintage auditorium seats and even the signature ball. Numerous scenes of the auditions and practices required to create believable ballplayers show just how much work went into the film's game scenes. "Bill Walton Visits the Set" features the former NBA ballplayer turned color commentator for his cameo in which he gets equipped with a wig and beard to approximate his appearance back in the day. He relates a story about the San Antonio Spurs that has an unexpected intersection with director Kent Alterman. "The Man Behind Semi-Pro" is the requisite "making of" featurette that goes into far more detail than necessary, but nevertheless gives insight into the behind-the-scenes action, including how they cast the parts and even a now-bittersweet focus on the wrestling bear. In addition, the "Where are they now?" alternate ending and improv scenes featuring Will Arnett, Andrew Daly, Amy Sedaris and Ferrell are worth a quick glance.
The Bad: As is often the case, deleted scenes are best left on the cutting room floor and they fall curiously flat without context. "Four Days in Flint" will be popular with the locals, but doesn't really show much of the city itself. The fake Dick Pepperfield "Flint Tropics Hot Talk" are forgettable, and although it's fun to learn that Ferrell had a big hand in creating the hook for "Love Me Sexy," there's really only so many times you want to hear the song, see the video or break down the lyrics.