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Holy Ghost People

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04/15/2014 | Comments 0

No Holds Barred

RLJ Entertainment's new Blu-ray for No Holds Barred begins with what seems like dozens of trailers for movies starring pro wrestlers from the WWE talent pool. Each flick went direct to home video, but once upon a time — aka 1989 — one had to go to the multiplex to catch such a spectacle.
04/15/2014 | Comments 0

Knights of Badassdom

In 2008, the third act of the guy comedy Role Models used LARPing — live-action role-playing, that is — as a backdrop for our protagonists' lessons learned. Today, Knights of Badassdom extends that half-hour into a full feature, to the point where viewers are left not smiling, but exhausted. 
04/02/2014 | Comments 0

Switched on

Not everything on television has to appeal to mass audiences. In fact, with the further fractioning of viewership thanks to alternatives like Netflix and VOD, more series can afford to become more niche. Here are five examples of shows both past and present — and new to DVD and/or Blu-ray — that encompass some of the more outrageous ideas ever to go beyond boardroom discussion.
04/02/2014 | Comments 0

Confession of Murder

Seventeen years after slaying 10 women and getting away with it, the charismatic serial killer Du-sok (Park Si-hoo) comes clean with a Confession of Murder, in this 2012 South Korean crime thriller. He does so by publishing a book that dishes all the grisly details.
04/02/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Movies · Comedy · The Other Guys

The Other Guys

Rod Lott August 7th, 2010


Maybe decades from now, the director/star team of Adam McKay and Will Ferrell will be thought of as this generation's film-comedy equivalent of Billy Wilder and Jack Lemmon.

Hey, I said "maybe."

I'm someone who always looks forward to seeing Ferrell in a movie, but someone who really, really looks forward when said movie also carries McKay's credit. Arguably, he brings out the be(a)st in Ferrell: Witness "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy," "Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby," "Step Brothers" and now "The Other Guys."

Despite lukewarm trailers, "The Other Guys" delivers big. Oh, it won't be up for a single Oscar, but all a comedy need be judged on is the number of laughs it elicits. I wasn't counting, but if I were, I'd have lost track.

Ferrell is Allen Gamble, a New York City cop who is happy sitting behind a desk, doing nothing but paperwork. This irritates his partner, hotshot Terry Hoitz (Mark Wahlberg, "Date Night"), who's been demoted after shooting baseball star Derek Jeter.

Actually, everything about the milquetoast Allen irritates Terry: his face, the sound of his stream hitting the urinal, his predilection for the music of Little River Band, even his car. "This is literally like driving inside a vagina," Terry says of Allen's buttoned-up Prius.

Appearances, of course, can be deceiving. After arresting a corporate weasel (Steve Coogan, "Marmaduke") for minor permit violations (not knowing he's center stage of a massive Ponzi scheme), the two become immersed in a do-or-die situation that prompts their true selves to emerge.

It's not the plot that yields the yuks. In fact, one could excise practically all its scenes and not lose any of the standouts. A particularly good running gag involves Allen's inexplicable magnetism to hot women; his wife (Eva Mendes, "The Spirit") is so gorgeous that Terry thinks it's a prank, and Allen's equally curvy ex-girlfriend (Natalie Zea, TV's "Justified") only amps up the mystery.

Scenes like that give Wahlberg a lot of room to be funny. Although he's essentially the straight man of the buddy formula "” the Bud Abbott to Ferrell's Lou Costello "” he fits in quite nicely in a role that usually would be played by a comedian, which Wahlberg is not. At least not yet.

Some gags are so sly, you don't recognize them as such until after they've passed. Ferrell's brand of humor is painted on thick here, which means bouts of yelling, absurdist improv, general man-child behavior and Michael Keaton ("Batman" returns!) quoting TLC lyrics. In other words, vintage Ferrell, making for the funniest Hollywood comedy since ... oh, say, last summer's "The Hangover." Seriously. —”Rod Lott

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