Police Academy On The Slopes

Ski Patrol never won any Academy Awards but its welcome PG brand of laughs lets it slide in quite nicely alongside raunchier fare like Ski School and Hot Dog… The Movie in the wacky ski lodge genre. Billed from the creator of Police Academy, the sophomoric comedy definitely styles itself after that beloved ‘80s franchise with some success.

Ski Patrol offers a strong ensemble cast of faces like character actors Ray Walston and Martin Mull, not to mention a very young George Lopez attempting an oddball Rodney Dangerfield impersonation. A guilty pleasure from the tail end of the 1980s, the VHS comedy staple falls shy of Police Academy’s lofty standards only due to the lesser talent involved.

Ski Patrol is a fun watch aided by a litany of likable veteran performers like Leslie Jordan and Ray Walston

The movie’s blend of surprisingly impressive skiing action, slapstick comedy, and genuine heart result in a shockingly kind and gentler experience. There’s nothing mean spirited or edgy in the humor for its day, deviating a wee bit from the usual gags. Even the villains, a bunch of preppy ski yuppies taking orders from a devious land developer played deliciously by Martin Mull, aren’t particularly threatening.

The lease on the Snowy Peaks ski lodge is coming up for renewal. Everyone loves its beloved owner Pops (Ray Walston). Its mountainous slopes are patrolled by Jerry (Roger Rose) and friends like Iceman (T.K. Carter). A land developer hires Jerry’s snooty rival Lance in an underhanded attempt to steal the lodge away from Pops.

Ski Patrol’s silly stunts and goofy antics help mesh the diverse ensemble nicely together. The guilty pleasure’s cast is a well-rounded group of misfits and genre stereotypes largely pulled from prior teen comedies. A bit of romance fills out their often hilariously awkward character development.

Jerry has a thing for the lodge’s ski instructor Ellen. Hopeless virgin Stanley romances foreign exchange student Tiana. Their hearts are in the right place, even wild characters like Suicide are endearing. Everyone comes together in the end to save the lodge for Pops. A feel-good comedy if I’ve ever seen one, a clean break from the harshness of reality.

Coming from a happy place, Ski Patrol is a fun watch aided by a litany of likable veteran performers like Leslie Jordan and Ray Walston. What you see is what you get, a simple and humorous film patterned after Police Academy’s winning comedic formula. The skiing action is staged extraordinarily well, a cut above most Hollywood stunt work.


MVD licenses Ski Patrol from MGM. The 1.85:1 presentation for the 1990 production is striking, offering inviting colors and excellent definition. Unfiltered detail and a rich contrast highlight the consistently fantastic clarity. The welcome palette and warm flesh-tones hint at a 2K transfer from the original camera negative, hardly touched since the 1990s.

The elements are in superb condition with no visible signs of wear. There’s no untoward processing in the transfer. Ski Patrol’s scenic cinematography on the slopes is often stunning, showcasing vast swaths of white snow and colorful skiing outfits. It’s packed with eye candy.

The main feature runs 92 minutes on a BD-25. The AVC encode is serviceable with passable grain reproduction. I am surprised no one had licensed this HD transfer from MGM before MVD finally grabbed it. This likely isn’t a brand-new transfer but it’s certainly capable 1080p video worth owning for fans. You are not going to see Ski Patrol look any better at this resolution.


The stereo theatrical soundtrack receives satisfactory 2.0 PCM audio. Clean dialogue passages and solid music fidelity make for a lively stereo mix with just enough low end for added presence. The comedy bits are helped out with funny effects, sticking out in the track. Ski Patrol’s satisfying sonics occasionally make for added entertainment.

Optional English subtitles play in an off-yellow font.


The comedy is #45 in MVD’s Rewind Collection line-up. It arrives on Blu-ray for the first time anywhere with a cool retro VHS slipcover and collectible mini-poster, not to mention reversible artwork on the cover. The only problem here is a decided lack of special features, boasting only a couple vintage trailers.

The disc is listed as Region A.

Ski Patrol Original Theatrical Trailer (01:58 in HD)

Ski Patrol VHS Trailer (01:35 in SD)

MVD Bonus Trailers:

Men At Work

Canadian Bacon

Vampire’s Kiss

Dirty Laundry

Full disclosure: This Blu-ray was provided by the label for review. This has not affected DoBlu’s editorial process. For information on how DoBlu handles all review material, please visit our about us page.

Ski Patrol
  • Video
  • Audio
  • Extras


A happy blend of action, heart, and humor patterned after the Police Academy films

User Review
4.5 (2 votes)

The following six screen shots serve as samples for our subscription-exclusive set of 44 full resolution, uncompressed HD screen shots grabbed directly from the Blu-ray:

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