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Shallow Hal (2001)

Jason Alexander , Kyle Gass , Bobby Farrelly , Peter Farrelly  |  PG-13 |  DVD
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (297 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Jason Alexander, Kyle Gass, Daniel Greene, Nan Martin, Bruce McGill
  • Directors: Bobby Farrelly, Peter Farrelly
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, DTS Surround Sound, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: July 2, 2002
  • Run Time: 114 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (297 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005JKLQ
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #167,830 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Shallow Hal" on IMDb

Special Features

  • 11 deleted scenes
  • Four Featurettes:
  • -"HBO Special"
  • -"Reel Comedy TV Special"
  • -"Seeing Throught the Layers"
  • -"In the Deep End With Shallow Hal"
  • Music video "Wall in Your Heart" - by Shelby Lynne

Editorial Reviews

A hypnotized playboy (Jack Black) who can only see "inner beauty" doesn't realize that his gorgeous girlfriend (Gwyneth Paltrow) is actually a 300-pound-not-so-hottie. "Heartwarming and hilarious" (WFLD-TV), it's the BIGGEST love story ever told!

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
46 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars some misconceptions July 13, 2002
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
I've perused some of the less favorable reviews of this film and I believe there are some misconceptions about its humor and message. One misconception is that the movie makes fun of fat people. It doesn't. There isn't one scene where we ever find ourselves laughing AT Gwyneth Paltrow. What we laugh at are the reactions of Jack Black to what she does. For example, when she downs the milk shake she shares with Black, it's not the gulping of the shake that makes us laugh but Black's incredulity when he turns around and sees an empty cup. And when we see the two in the canoe, it's not the canoe we chuckle at, but the sight of the befuddled Black paddling air. So the laughs don't come at Paltrow's expense; they come at Black's.
Yes, the movie relies on typical fat-type jokes - ie, overeating and crumpled funiture. But there is a subtle point in these hackneyed images that distinguishes them from your usual fat fare. Paltrow only seems to overeat by the standards society imposes on women. Like Black says, many women when they go out just order "water and a crumppette"; they deny themselves to satisfy society's expectations. But if they were to eat what THEY wanted, how many do you think wouldn't love to order that pizza burger with the fries and milk shake? Or take more than a "little" slice of cake? We all would! That is, we would if we weren't so concerned about what other people would think. Paltrow eats the way she does NOT because she's fat, but because she feels FREE to eat what she wants. Eating less makes no difference so she has no reason not to do what she wants - which is what the rest of us would also do if we were less uptight.
And as for the crumpled chairs and the poor little car's suspension, there's a subtle point here, too.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Bigger The Better! July 4, 2002
Format:DVD
Being that I am a heavyset person myself, I was able to put that fact aside and appreciate this movie for what it really is. Truthfully, I didn't find this movie funny but I did find a strong message. This movie goes to show that size doesn't have anything to do with the person on the inside. Gwyneth Paltrow's character Rosemary goes to show how underneath all that excess flesh that there is still a person. I think "Shallow Hal" is a movie that helps demolish discrimination against heavyset people. This movie didn't only give examples of heavyset people but of people who were skinny and just not physically attractive to that of one's expectations. Hal is a very shallow character and he is an example of all those people who discriminate against heavyset men and women and people who are not attractive. Like Hal in the movie, people can change and widen their horizons for something more beautiful. "Shallow Hal" is less of a comedy and more of a motivational, moving story about life. I think this is a family friendly movie, something that kids would like as long as the situation is explained to them. Let this movie touch you on several different levels and check it out.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly sensitive; feel-good DVD! July 9, 2002
Format:DVD
Okay, I sheepishly confess that I watched this DVD expecting to see some patented Farrelly brothers humor: crude, insensitive, and in-your-face. WOW, was I surprised.
This movie is definitely humorous (we laughed out loud at times) but when it's over, you come away with a heightened sense of sensitivity for those people society categorizes as "ugly", "fat" or "undesirable." And if you're not careful, you may just approach life a bit differently once you've watched this excellent movie.
Hal (portrayed wonderfully by Jack Black), and his best friend Mauricio (Jason Alexander) are a couple of obnoxious, shallow guys who make no apologies for their fixation on dating ONLY young, beautiful women. This is tough for both of them, as neither one is particularly good-looking. But, they drive on doggedly in their pursuit of women who are consistently "out of their league."
Everything changes when Hal is stuck in an elevator with a self-motivational guru, who gives Hal a "gift". In fact, Hal is hypnotized; now, he sees a person's inner beauty, not their outward physical appearance. Unattractive or obese women look like supermodels to Hal; and when he approaches them, genuinely attracted to their true beauty, they respond. After years of being unable to connect with beautiful women, suddenly Hal has an unprecedented run of success...only, the women are really not physically attractive, and this is evident to Mauricio, and everyone else...except Hal. In short order, Hal hooks up with Rosemary (Gwyneth Paltrow), who is smart, funny, caring, and to Hal, stunningly beautiful. One problem: to the rest of the world, Rosemary is a 350-pound behemoth who breaks restaurant furniture simply by sitting on it.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 'Hal' pleasantly shallow October 18, 2004
Format:DVD
First published Stanford Daily, Nov 2001.

The Farrelly brothers have done it again. From the makers of such outré comedies as "There's Something About Mary" and "Me, Myself and Irene" comes "Shallow Hal," a comedy with a conscience. Known for movies that feature imperfect men lusting after gorgeous girls with a few laughs thrown in for good measure, the brothers delve a bit deeper this time, seeking to convince us that fat is fun. Jack Black (the crazy music store employee in "High Fidelity") is Hal, a shallow male (if you'll pardon the redundancy) of modest looks, besotted with breasts and waiflike figures. He prefers a girl with just one large breast to one with half a brain. Needless to say, in the true Farrelly tradition, Hal is a loser when it comes to girls.

Hal's messiah is Tony Robbins, the self-help guru who achieves the impossible and makes him see inner beauty. Ergo, Hal moves in a haze, stripping fat women of the excess padding, glossing over manly moustaches etc., to visualize them as the epitome of pulchritude. One such beneficiary of Hal's x-ray vision is Rosemary (Gwyneth Paltrow), who trades her corsets from "Shakespeare in Love" and "Emma" for a fat suit. Despite being well over 300 pounds and gluttonously devouring any source of fat within range, Hal can only see her as the nubile nymphet of his dreams. His consternation at being in a minority of one in his admiration is palpable. Eventually the blinkers fall off, courtesy his shallower pal, the meddling Mauricio (Jason Alexander). The crux of the film lies in how Hal confronts the fat in his femme fatale.

Black's virtuoso performance as Hal makes us squirm. Rosemary, with the fat suit, is ponderously poignant.
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