Blu-ray Review: Strong Comedy Ensemble Can’t Answer When ‘Nature Calls’

Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly versionE-mail page to friendE-mail page to friendPDF versionPDF version
No votes yet

CHICAGO – There are some undeniable comic talents in Todd Rohal’s “Nature Calls,” including two of the best stand-up comedians of the last decade—Patton Oswalt and the late, great Patrice O’Neal. Rob Riggle and Johnny Knoxville can work in the right material. This wasn’t the right material for any of the four as it’s just a mediocre, generally unfunny comedy that leads one to question what the cast saw in it in the first place. Blu-ray rating: 2.0/5.0
Rating: 2.0/5.0

My guess is that an incredibly smart actor like Oswalt thought this could be something like “The Bad News Bears” in the way that film used a talented cast of young actors and didn’t treat them like your typical movie kids. Oswalt would lead his own version of the “Bears” on a journey that proved that there is an old-fashioned sense of adventure that has been lost in a generation of Boy Scouts more concerned with iPhones than how to make a fire. Sadly, for that movie to work, Rohal needed to actually develop the kids. Instead, he spends way too much time with the bad behavior of the adults, including way too many bits of physical comedy and a final act that gets INSANELY dark, including the permanent scarring of a major character. Tonally imbalanced and just not that funny, “Nature Calls” is a movie that just barely registers at all. It’s not bad enough to mar the reputation of anyone who made it. Just forgettable. And if it makes anyone go back and appreciate the absolute genius of Patrice O’Neal’s stand-up comedy, I suppose it will have done some good.

Nature Calls was released on Blu-ray and DVD on January 22, 2013
Nature Calls was released on Blu-ray and DVD on January 22, 2013
Photo credit: Magnolia

Determined to honor his father’s scouting legacy and mount one last comeback for his dwindling troop, Assistant Scoutmaster Randy Stevens (Patton Oswalt) pays a visit to his business-minded brother Kirk (Johnny Knoxville), who is throwing a television-themed slumber party for his newly adopted 10-year-old son at his McMansion. Randy pressures the boys to secretly ditch the party and join him on a weekend scout trip. Pursued by Kirk and his security guard (Rob Riggle), the adventure lands the crew in trouble at every turn, pits them against angry parents and park rangers, yet ultimately turns the group of sheltered kids into a troop to be reckoned with.

Special Features:
o Nature Calls Behind The Scenes
o AXS TV: A Look At Nature Calls
o Outtakes
o Theatrical Trailer

“Nature Calls” stars Patton Oswalt, Johnny Knoxville, Rob Riggle, Patrice O’Neal, and Darrell Hammond. It was written and directed by Todd Rohal and released on Blu-ray and DVD on January 22, 2013. content director Brian Tallerico

Content Director

User Login

Free Giveaway Mailing


  • Yellowstone, Season 5

    CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of audio streaming series review for “Yellowstone,” the popular Western series set in modern Montana … in Season 5. Available to stream on the Paramount Network and through Video On Demand beginning November 13th.

  • Paranormal Activity: The Ultimate Chills Collection

    CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of appears on Eddie Volkman Show with Hannah B on Star 96.7 WSSR-FM (Joliet, IL) reviewing the new Paramount Pictures Blu-Ray Collection of “Paranormal Activity: The Ultimate Chills Collection,” containing all seven films in the series plus a documentary.

Advertisement on Twitter

archive Top Ten Discussions