Posts Tagged ‘Will Ferrell’

This week’s releases include: a bloody thriller; a hit man partnership; a new twist on a long-running franchise; a crime drama; a look at a life falling apart; a French fantasy; the rise of a young action star; a John Woo double feature; a movie about making a movie; a local murder mystery; a record of a hair artist; and a one-man show. (more…)

This week’s releases include: the implosion of an Aussie crime family; an historical epic told through the eyes of an unlikely character; a sketch comedy bonanza; a science fiction drama that takes alternate realities to the extreme; an epic gangster narrative that spans 35 years; countless bloody deaths caused by ancient fish; and an account of a creation that changed the world. (more…)

This week’s releases are from two ends of the spectrum: soon-to-be Fortune 500 soldiers fight to clear their names; a couple of cops try to prove they really are good at their jobs; and a son tries to ensure he’s the only man in his mother’s life. (more…)

This week’s releases spans a spectrum of genres: an early holiday issue with lots of extra goodies; an intriguing tale of murder and mystery; and an indie film about doing what’s right in life and love. (more…)

The buddy cop movie has been produced to great success many times, with the Lethal Weapon series being a prime example. There is a template that most follow and a short list of scenarios that show up in each. Writer/director Adam McKay was the man behind the widely popular Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy and Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby. However, in creating The Other Guys, McKay appears to have ignored most of the standards as well as his own recipe for funny.

NYPD Detectives Christopher Danson and P.K. Highsmith (Dwayne Johnson and Samuel L. Jackson) are the baddest and most beloved cops in New York City. Two desks over and one back, sit Detectives Allen Gamble (Will Ferrell) and Terry Hoitz (Mark Wahlberg). They’re not heroes – they’re “the Other Guys.” But every cop has his or her day and soon Gamble and Hoitz stumble onto a seemingly innocuous case no other detective wants to touch, but it could be New York City’s biggest crime.

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It began as a 12-minute skit on “Funny or Die” – Will Ferrell impersonating the 43rd president of the United States George W. Bush. It was so well-received, they decided to turn it into a full-length Broadway show. From there, all that was left was a live broadcast creating Ferrell’s first HBO special.

Josh Brolin eerily channelled Bush Jr. in Oliver Stone’s W.; conversely, Ferrell’s rendition is not an outright caricature, but rather a light-hearted parody that reminds us of all the little things that allowed us to laugh during his eight years of reign. Recently unemployed, Bush (Ferrell) takes viewers on a semi-sentimental journey through his life, donning various outfits to match his personalities, such as “cowboy,” “frat boy” and “fighter.” The fun never stops as Bush delivers his usual unfiltered dialogue and indulges in a sultry fantasy starring Condoleezza Rice.

The special features include: a behind the scenes look in “Road to Broadway;” “Bush on Bush Interview,” which resembles the infamous David Frost/Richard Nixon interview; and a true or false game about the Bush administration.

The guys who brought us Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby and Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy have teamed up once again for Step Brothers – the result of a brainstorming session between Will Ferrell, John C. Riley and director Adam McKay.

Brennan Huff (Ferrell) is a sensitive, periodically employed 39-year-old who lives with his mother, Nancy (Mary Steenburgen). Dale Doback (Riley) is a 40-year-old idea guy with no real work experience (he manages a fantasy baseball team) who lives with his father, Robert (Richard Jenkins). When Nancy and Robert get married, Brennan and Dale are forced to co-exist in the same house. Dale takes on the role of older, bullying brother but both react to most situations as adolescent boys. However, their immaturity and neediness threatens to break the newly formed family apart.

Ferrell and Riley are in top form. Their chemistry on-screen and ability to feed off of each other’s energy results in constant and consistent hilarity – even when they’re annoying, they’re funny. That said, watching two grown men act like spoiled children can be grating at times. Not surprisingly, Ferrell once again displays his singing abilities (among other things).

The parents are an integral part of the story’s humour and Jenkins and Steenburgen are irreplaceable; Jenkins is great as the exasperated father and Steenburgen can draw laughter simply by cursing. Adam Scott plays Brennan’s younger, more successful brother Derek. He is arrogant and never passes an opportunity to torment Brennan; Scott is perfectly smug in the role. His wife, Alice (Kathryn Hahn), is frustrated and ready to break-free of her oppressor, which manifests as comic, manic advances on another man. Together, their family destroys Guns ‘N’ Roses’ “Sweet Child o’ Mine.”

Although the characters are in similar situations, they are inherently different, which results in their initial dislike of each other as well as their eventual camaraderie. It also ensures audiences will not bore watching mirror reactions.

It would be simple to compose a list of all the hilarious scenes or dialogue; similarly, it would be easy to compile a list of the annoying bits. Luckily, the former would far outweigh the latter, which is mostly thanks to a very entertaining cast.