Clarkson the Italian Job DVD Review - www.impulsegamer.com -

Feature 6.5
Video 8.0
Audio 8.0
Special Features 4.0
Total 6.5
Distributor: BBC
Running Time: TBA
Classification:
 PG
Reviewer: Jamie Kirk

6.5


Clarkson the Italian Job

Over the years Top Gear has earned a loyal following for its combination of enthusiasm for really fast cars, racing said cars and the amiable chemistry between its three hosts. Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond trade barbs and practical jokes like any great comedy team and it is their presence that has made Top Gear essential viewing for even those that know absolutely nothing about cars. Clarkson Ė The Italian Job eschews much of the latter and focuses solely on Clarkson, as he strives to get fit for a race he is taking part in. Of course this fitness regime doesnít involve gruelling montages of him running up and down stairs, but test driving a bunch of his favourite cars and getting a trip to Italy out of it.

Clarkson starts by at least attempting his gym montage, making cracks about various pieces of gym equipment that bemuse him. However after this short trip it is down to business as he drives car after car, comparing speeds and how much fun they are to drive. The Italian Job falters here a little for non car enthusiasts. Clarkson is charismatic enough to imbue what he is doing with his trademark humour, but it doesnít really mask the fact that all he is doing is driving round an empty race track over and over again. Previous Top Gear specialís have included long road trips that break up the hardcore car stuff with funny segments of the hosts bickering at each other, but as this is just a Clarkson joint it is sorely lacking in that department. Thatís not to say people wonít get anything out of it. People who know about horsepower will get a huge kick out of the various cars Clarkson drives, such as the Porsche GT3, ,LP570-4 Superleggera, Lamborghini Gallardo  Mercedes SLS AMG, the Ariel Atom V8 and the Zonda R, which sends Clarkson into fits of joy when driving.

Clarkson certainly looks like he is having the time of his life, essentially being given the keys to an adult males toybox, and bits and pieces certainly are entertaining to watch. Witnessing Clarkson drive the Ariel is a sight to behold, as the windshield-less car contorts his face in ways that the face was not meant to be contorted. Likewise, the Zonda R sends Clarkson into unbridled fits of happiness as he screams of soiling himself with excitement. The rest though is all kind of similar, and lacks the entertainment value to appeal to a wider audience.

The last part of the DVD shows Clarkson entering the race, complete with troublesome car that has to be fixed right at the last minute. Itís fun to watch Clarkson joke about with the drivers and certainly interesting to see how he does in the race. However once again itís not edge of the seat sort of stuff, even though Clarkson is having the time of his life.

There is a second disc, which shows the making of this special, which is once again entertaining to a point. There is also a recap of car destruction, which has been featured on other DVDís but is bought here into a nice little package. The other feature is a stock standard photo gallery, which is good for a quick look but offers nothing substantial. The feature looks good, itís not really something that needs movie quality transfer in sound and audio. It does the job and it does it well.

Overall, Clarkson fans will enjoy this DVD. It has him doing what he does best, making sarcastic remarks, having the time of his life and driving really fast cars. There isnít too much to recommend here for casual viewers of Top Gear or people who arenít hardcore fans of cars. Those people are best off sticking with their Top Gear DVDís or reruns. However if you canít get enough Clarkson and cars, this DVD will offer mindless distraction for a little while






 
 



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