Click here to return to the main site.

Blu-ray Review

DVD cover

Bachelor Party (1984)
(2018 Reissue)


Starring: Tom Hanks, Adrian Zmed, William Tepper and Tawny Kitaen
Distributor: Fabulous Films Ltd / Fremantle Media Enterprises
RRP: £14.99


Certificate: 18
Release Date: 06 August 2018

Rick Grassko finally decides to settle down and marry his girlfriend, Debbie. From her family and ex-boyfriend, the news comes as an unlooked-for shock given that he drives a school bus and she is from a wealthy family. His friends are also shocked, but decide to throw him a bachelor party to end all parties, let the mayhem commence…

Bachelor Party (1984. 1 hr 45 min 31 sec) is a comedy film directed by Neal Israel, who co-wrote the script with Pat Proft,

I have always believed I have never seen a Tom Hanks film which I didn’t like, from his original geeky male ingenue roles, through his romantic comedies onto his horrific experiences of war and having to suffer an unnatural relationship with a ball which started his dramatic stage. Bachelor Party comes very close to ruining that feeling.

I do not have a problem with the film aiming for the lowest common denominator, with gags about penises in buns, smuggling out a dead donkey from a hotel, or all the references to prostitutes and pornography, it is on balance the bachelor party to end them all. I did have a problem with the fact that few of the gags dropped well enough to make me laugh.

Hanks is the one real redeeming aspect of the film. His character is not so much the innocent abroad, he is quite happy to watch porn and have hookers and drugs at his party, but he remains apart from all of this, maintaining his Hanksian air of being a fundamentally good guy, the sort you should be happy to introduce to the parents.

Unfortunately, he is not well served by the supporting actors, some of whom are just awful and some who do not understand the subtleties of humour, however broad it may be, appearing to want to go full Bluto regardless of the set up. They mostly come over as characters with a pathological desire to react in an extreme way not consistent with the scene they are playing.

There is also a sub plot with Debbie’s ex who does everything he can to stop the intended wedding - from trying to bribe Rick, to sending the hookers hired for the bachelor party to Debbie’s house, which could have been removed from the film in its entirety. Ok, that did make me laugh, as did the dick in the bun, but two laughs in almost two hours do not a classic comedy make.

The film has been released on Blu-ray and the print has some grain from the original film stock, the colours are good and there is no apparent print damage. There are a couple of extras on the disc.

Behind the Scenes (3 min, 10 sec) which is more of a promo for the show and looks like it has been taken from a VHS. An American Tradition (2 min, 51 sec) its another promo with shots from the film and some contributions from Hanks. Tom Hanks Interviews (2 min, 44 sec) which are three shorts of Hanks talking about acting and Bachelor Party.

While the Men Play (1 min, 43 sec) with Tawney Kitaen and the director discussing the girl’s side of the film, in another promo. Lastly you get the Original Theatrical Trailer (2 min, 07 sec) which funnily is almost as long as most of the other extras.

The film came out in the same year as Splash (1984) and while neither could be termed classics, the latter is the superior film. If not for Hanks’s performance this would not have been as watchable as it turned out to be.


Charles Packer