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Genre: Comedy
Starring: Seann William Scott, John C. Reilly, Jenna Fischer, Lili Taylor, Fred Armisen, Gil Bellows, Bobby Cannavale, Rick Gonzalez, Chris Conrad
Director: Steve Conrad
Rating: NC-16 (Coarse Language & Sexual Reference)
Year Made: 2008







Languages: English
Subtitles: English/Chinese
Aspect Ratio: 16x9
Sound: Dolby Digital
Running Time: 1 hr 23 mins
Region Code: 3
Distributor: Scorpio East
Official Website:




Seann William Scott and John C. Reilly star in this hilarious workplace comedy. Scott, a career assistant manager seems a shoo-in for the opportunity to run the chain's new store - that is until a Canadian transfer starts to compete for the job too. Fists fly in a no-holds barred battle as each man one-ups the other while their mortified wives and co-workers look on.


The Promotion is about doing what it takes to get ahead of the competition in your career, as neighborhood supermarket Donaldson’s two assistant managers Doug and Richard would have you know.

As played by comedy veterans Seann William Scott and John C. Reilly, they go head to head, mano a mano style, to slug it out for the coveted position of manager at a new store location. Each has his reasons for wanting and eventually needing the promotion: Doug stays with his wife in a small apartment that offers no privacy with a “banjo-playing” next door neighbour. They also subsequently invest almost all their savings on a non-refundable deposit for a house.

Richard, on the other hand, is a recovering alcoholic and drug addict, who is trying to do it right by his wife and newly born daughter. As Richard muses, their conflict is one of circumstance. “We’re all just out here to find some food,” he says, “sometimes we bump into each other.” Contrary to its billing, The Promotion is less a comedy than a social satire. Indeed, writer Steve Conrad, who gained cred for his work on “The Pursuit of Happiness”, fashions his directorial debut as “The Pursuit of the American Dream” and a movie that is subtle and human.

Conrad’s idea of comedy is never laugh out loud, irreverent, or boisterous. It is not that The Promotion does not have its funny moments, but they are designed to elicit a chuckle, not bowl you over. And that’s perfectly fine with me, because Conrad creates his characters real. They are people with concerns you can relate to, but Hollywood caricatures that you know belong in a movie.

It is in this light therefore that the performances of Seann William Scott and John C. Reilly should be seen in. While Reilly is known for his dramatic abilities, and more recently his comedic talents (see Step Brothers and Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story), Scott is better known for his roles in comedies such as the American Pie trilogy and The Dukes of Hazzard.

Scott’s much more subdued performance here is quite a revelation. Without any of the usual raunchy sexual innuendo-filled jokes he is often heard delivering, Scott imbues his character Doug with an earnestness and sincerity that endears.

The Promotion did not do well B.O.-wise in the States, and neither did it charm many critics. But this is less a fault of the movie than is it, I believe, of expectations. Sure, there are elements of comedy to be found, but the movie aspires to be a realistic portrayal of two everyday people’s pursuit of a better job, a higher wage, and ultimately, a more comfortable life. It is a human comedy therefore, with lots of heart for its characters and their predicaments, and that is what makes it stand out.


This Code 3 DVD contains no extra features.


The disc’s visual transfer is acceptable and the movie is presented in its original English dialogue.   



Review by Gabriel Chong

Posted on 29 May 2009


Other titles from Scorpio East:

. All The Boys Love Mandy Lane

. The Tripper

. Trailer Park Boys The Movie

. Jack & Jill Vs The World

. Disaster Movie

. Space Chimps

. The Haunting of Molly Hartley

. Stir of Echoes 2: The Homecoming

. Set Off

. Marigold

. Beast Stalker

. My Best Friend's Girl

. The Reef

. Connected

. Painted Skin

. 12 Lotus

. The Coffin

. The Luckiest Man

. Forget Me Not

. The Black Swindler

. Rule #1

. Dance of the Dragon

. Money No Enough 2

. Chaos

. Midnight Eagle

. The Leap Years

. Ancient Chinese Sports

. There Will Be Blood

. The Nanny Diaries

. The Magic Gourd

. Death Proof

. Dead Air

. A Tale of Mari and Her Puppies

. My Wife is a Gambling Maestro

. Fatal Move

. An Empress and the Warriors

. Ah Long Pte Ltd

. Talking Cock The Movie

. 2 Faces of My Girlfriend

. Lust Caution

. 881

. Brothers

. Ratatouille

. The Invisible

. The Lookout

. Alone

. Bar Paradise

. China Vampire

. Hooked On You

. Underdog

. Keeping Up With The Steins

. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End

. High School Musical 2: Extended Edition

. Pixar Short Films Volume One

. Who Slept With Her?

. The Jungle Book

. Disney Princess Enchanted Tales

. Meet The Robinsons

. Goal II: Living the Dream

. Hanna Montana

. Meet The Robinsons

. Wild Hogs

. Breaking And Entering

. Jump In

. Primeval

. Forest of Death

. The Fox and the Hound 2

. The Fox and the Hound

. Dumbo

. One Last Dance

. Protege

. The Curse of the Golden Flower

. A Battle Of Wits

. Rain Dogs

. Heavenly Mission

. Exiled

. Operation Undercover

. Diary

. Fatal Contact

. Singapore Dreaming

. Rob-B-Hood

. On The Edge

. The World's Fastest Indian

. Dragon Tiger Gate

. Unarmed Combat

. Crazy Stone

. Election 2

. We Are Family

. I Not Stupid Too

. The Shoe Fairy

. 2 Becomes 1

. 49 Days


. Dragon Eye Congee

. A Chinese Tall Story

. Perhaps Love


. Election

. The Myth

. Wait 'Til You're Older

. The Maid


This review is made possible with the kind support from Scorpio East


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