Twentysomethings from 1991 can now revel in City Slickers‘ midlife catharsis, but will a new collector’s edition (PG-13, 114 mins.) make fans of this Billy Crystal-starring Western comedy ”happier than a puppy with two peters”?
The bare 2001 disc lacked even the basic English captioning many home viewers take for granted. As ice-cream baron Barry (Josh Mostel) would say, ”Scoop of chocolate, scoop of vanilla. Don’t waste my time.”
Crystal — who believes he was a cowboy in a former life! — proves to be an incorrigibly loquacious host. He’s reverent toward the late Bruno Kirby and Jack Palance (who won an Oscar playing a surly trail boss) in two making-ofs, and playful with director Ron Underwood and costar Daniel Stern in a joint commentary. And he’s a regular Mr. Saturday Night describing himself — ”You know, I have to say, I was handsome” — and 10-year-old Jake Gyllenhaal, who made his movie debut as Crystal’s son. ”He was always performing,” remembers Crystal. ”He would sing from South Pacific and we’d all go, ‘He’s gay, he’s going to be gay.’?” A deleted scene reveals an axed PETA-friendly finale, but at least the beloved bovine Norman (above, with Crystal) gets his very own featurette.
Pony up, cowboy. The improvement is Crystal clear.