July 27, 2005
Warner Bros. Pictures, Village Roadshow Pictures
Cast: Johnny Knoxville, Seann William Scott, Willie Nelson, M.C. Gainey, Burt Reynolds
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The teaming of Johnny Knoxville (Jackass: The Movie) and Seann William Scott (Dude, Where’s My Car?) as well as the presence of the ’70s-flavored car chases that were a specialty of the TV series guarantees that The Dukes of Hazzard will be even more lowbrow than the CBS TV series (1979-85) that inspired it. However, this brain-damaging comedy is more “rehash” than “remake,” as good ol’ Georgiaboys Luke Duke (Knoxville) and his cousin Bo (Scott) are frequently upstaged bythe General Lee, the Confederate-flagged ’69 Charger that they drive, jump, race, and fly in as they smuggle moonshine for their Uncle Jesse (Willie Nelson). Meanwhile, cousin Daisy Duke (Jessica Simpson) is reliably available to model her short-shorts (aka “Daisy Dukes”) and awesome figure (and let’s face it, Simpson’s talents pretty much begin and end right there), while corrupt honcho Boss Hogg (Burt Reynolds, who should know better) recruits a local NASCAR star to advance his wily scheme of converting Hazzard County into a strip mine. Director Jay Chandrasekhar (Super Troopers) manages to mine some good-natured humor from the movie’s oval-track detour and a few colorful supporting players (notably Kevin Hefferman as the Duke’s pal Sheev). Otherwise, consider yourself warned: The Dukes of Hazzard is shameless Hollywood product at its most forgettable, trafficking in shameless white, rural Southern stereotypes. If you can make itto the end, there’s a blooper reel to reward your endurance. –Jeff Shannon
TRIVIA & FACTS
– Jessica Simpson, who plays Daisy Duke, beat out Britney Spears, Mandy Moore and Jessica Biel for the role.
– Jessica Simpson’s film feature debut.
– Dolly Parton was offered the role of Pauline (according to Jessica Simpson) but turned it down.
– Filming commenced on 8 November 2004, 26 years almost to the very day that shooting began for the original pilot, The Dukes of Hazzard: One Armed Bandits.
– While appearing on a Dutch TV talk show to help publicize her appearance as Daisy Duke in this movie, Jessica Simpson acted as a magician’s assistant when she was sawed in half by magician Hans Klok in an illusion called “Clearly Impossible”. In 1981, original Daisy Catherine Bach also took a turn at being a magician’s assistant when she was sawed into six by magician David Copperfield in his fourth “The Magic of” TV special.
Additional cast and credits. Plot summary and more.