Discs Are Rated
Click above to purchase "Coyote Ugly" at amazon.com
review by Ren C.
Running Time: 101 minutes
Starring Piper Perabo, John Goodman, Adam Garcia
Written by Gina Wendkos
Directed by David McNally
Retail Price: $22.99
Features: Audio Commentary with "The Coyotes",
Selected Scenes Commentaries with Producer Jerry Bruckheimer
and director David McNally, "Search For The Stars"
featurette, "Inside The Songs" featurette, "Coyote 101"
featurette, Additional Scenes, Action Overload, Leann Rimes
Music Video, Theatrical Trailer, Bonus Trailers
Specs: 2.35:1 Anamorphic Widescreen, English Dolby
Digital 5.1, English DTS 5.1, French Dolby Digital 5.1,
English Closed Captions, English Captions, Spanish
Subtitles, Chapter Selection
"Something that you may not know about Jerry Bruckheimer
is that he makes movies with very strong female leads."
This quote comes from Maria Bello on the commentary of
"Coyote Ugly." Thinking about her words, I realize that she
is right. Bruckheimer is the man responsible, good or bad,
for bringing the world both "Dangerous Minds" and
"Flashdance", both of which reflected females in a very
positive light. Despite the advertising campaign that may
have portrayed otherwise, "Coyote Ugly" does exactly the
The movie revolves around Violet Sanford (Piper Perabo),
who has decided to leave her roots in New Jersey and follow
her dream of becoming a big-time singer in New York. In New
York, she discovers pretty quickly that life isn't going to
be as easy as she thought it was. She tries several places
to submit her demo tape, only to be rejected each time. She
finally gives her demo tape to a man she meets in a bar, who
she is convinced is a record executive. Actually, he is an
employee of the bar named Kevin O'Donnell (Adam Garcia). He
listens to the tape several times, and eventually tells
Violet that he is not an executive. One thing leads to
another, and the two fall for each other.
At the same time, Violet is searching desperately for a
job, and she finds one in the strangest of places. She gets
a job at a bar called Coyote Ugly, owned by a very tough,
very feisty woman named Lil (Maria Bello). Violet is
overwhelmed when she first sees the bar, and meets the other
"coyotes", including Cammie (Izabella Miko), and Rachel
(Bridget Moynahan). Over time, she starts to fit in at the
bar, but the real question becomes, will she ever find her
While this isn't necessarily isn't a movie that has an
intricate, twisting plot, it is definitely a movie that
makes a point, and an uplifting one at that. Each of the
actresses defines her role and stakes out a personality of
her own. In addition, there aren't excessive amounts of
superfluous scenes that bog down the plot. Even Violet's
interactions with her father William (John Goodman) always
work within the context of the plot. The film is definitely
not the T&A extravaganza it was made out to be in the
advertising campaign, and is actually a fairly motivational
film. Overall, this stands up as one of the best
female-driven movies in recent memory.
The video here looks quite good, with the very rich color
palate coming through well. Colors are bright and vibrant,
and blacks are, for the most part, deep and rich. There was
no grain evident, although I couldn't help but notice a lot
of shimmering effects at various points throughout the
movie. Aside from these, this was an overall pleasing
Dolby Digital 5.1 and DTS tracks have both been provided
here and are quite good. Both tracks make the most of the
numerous musical selections in the movie, at times making it
sound like the bar is in the room with the viewer. Dialogue
comes through crisply and clearly and ambient sounds,
especially those present in the bar, further enhance the
listening experience. I actually slightly preferred the
Dolby track, although in this case, the tracks are nearly
the same and it is just a matter of personal preference.
Have you ever gotten a really small present in a really
big box? That is the best way to describe the features of
"Coyote Ugly". While the features themselves fill two menu
screens, the majority of them are very short and seem almost
to cheat the viewer out of any more in-depth information.
Most of these features could have, and should have, been
combined to form one longer documentary, as they look to
have been culled from the same footage.
The first of these is Search For the Stars. This
is split into three segments, the first of which is "The
Dreamer", detailing the search for someone to play the part
of Violet Sanford, eventually filled by Piper Perabo. Some
slightly interesting footage here, including a portion of
Perabo's screen test. The next segment, "Coyotes" deals
with filling the roles of, appropriately enough, the
Coyotes. Nothing groundbreaking here, just some interviews
with the actresses in the roles, along with producer Jerry
Bruckheimer. The final segment in this part is "Mr.
O'Donnell", describing the search for the actor that would
finally be Adam Garcia. Again, nothing particularly
The next featurette, Inside the Songs, describes
the writing of the songs for the movie, and their
incorporation. Included here is an interview with
everyone's favorite songwriter, Diane Warren, who is
responsible for some of the schmalziest pop to come out of
the music industry in the last twenty years. The odds are,
if there was a sappy ballad in a movie, it was written by
Diane Warren. Also included here is a short interview
segment with Leann Rimes, who became the singing voice for
Perabo in the movie.
Moving on to the final portion of the documentary, we
find Coyote 101, which is also broken up into three
segments, "A Place To Get Ugly", "Calling The Shots", and
"Shakin' It". In contrast to "Search for the Stars", where
the segments seemed to go a bit too long, these segments
seemed to end just as they were getting interesting. In
order, these detail what the bar is, how the actresses
trained to tend bar, and how they trained for the dance
Next is a series of five Additional Scenes, all of
which are fairly short and most likely were cut for time.
None of the scenes were terribly vital, and most deal with
Violet and her hometown friends. Had these been included,
they more than likely would have bogged the movie down.
Also included is a full-length Audio Commentary
from the Coyotes' themselves, which is very enjoyable as it
is both obvious that they have a good rapport, and they also
provide a lot of information about the making of the movie.
Selected scene Commentaries are also included from
producer Jerry Bruckheimer and director David McNally.
Bruckheimer comments on five scenes, McNally on six, and
both seem as though they were audio clips taken from
interviews done at another time, and they were not screen
specific. Neither was particularly fascinating, but nice to
Action Overload is a very bizarre montage of dance
scenes from the movie that lasts about forty-five seconds.
I'm not sure what this was used for or why, but it's nice to
have here, I guess. The Music Video for Leann Rimes'
"Can't Fight the Moonlight" is also included, and it is the
standard video from a movie, with clips from the movie and
artist's performance spliced together.
Wrapping up the special features is the theatrical
trailer, along with Sneak Peeks for "Gone in 60
Seconds" and "Shanghai Noon". Note that these "Sneak Peeks"
are also forced trailers before the movie, although pressing
the menu button will get you past them.
This is a very fun, very enjoyable movie. While it is
certainly not a cerebral movie, it is definitely one that
you can go back to and get enjoyment from each time. The
audio and video are very good, and while the features are
not stellar, they're good for what they are. The price is a
little bit steep, but if you're a fan of the movie, it's
worth it. Overall, recommended.
(4/5 - NOT included in
NOT an average)