I figure I'd actually add something here now. Crazy, I know. Over the last year or so I've written a small handful of movie reviews, just trying my hand. I might as well post them, so I'll go in chronological order of when they were written. Warning: none of these, but especially the first three, are well written or edited. At all. They were written quite quickly, and I'm still refining what exactly I want my technique and voice to be. After a few, I decided to start inexpertly modeling the format of my reviews after those of James Berardinelli (of Reelviews.net), who is fantastic and I highly recommend. So here goes:
First Viewing 5 May, 2009
Rating: 6.5/10 Acceptable/Good.
Step Brothers, another Will Ferrell misadventure, is pretty much what one would expect. As Ferrell comedies go, it’s about average, better than a few (Semi-Pro, Kicking and Screaming), and worse than others (Elf, Talladega Nights, Anchorman).
This is the second film that pairs Farrell with Nights buddy John C. Reilly, and as they demonstrated in the previous movie, the two work well together. Some of the scenes that the two shares are genuinely hilarious, and as long as both are on screen the movie works well. Adam Scott has a nice comedic turn as Ferrell’s douchebag of a brother Derek, and Seth Rogen has a short but memorable cameo. As in all movies like this some of the jokes work better than other, but on the whole a high enough percentage hit their mark that you’ll be laughing more than enough to justify a viewing. Some of the better bits involve a character being buried alive and the epic bungling of bunking a bed. Importantly, Reilly and Farrell sell us on the prospect of two forty-year olds acting like five-year olds. This movie could be (more) ridiculous with lesser actors.
The movie is a bit uneven though, especially when one of Reilly or Ferrell is not on screen. In particular, a fling between Derek’s demented wife Alice and Reilly’s Dale does not work well, and some of the jokes are more uncomfortable than funny. The parents, Nancy and Robert, seem a bit out of place at times.
Ultimately, this is a Will Ferrell Movie™, no more or less. If you like his comedy, you’ll quite enjoy Step Brothers. If not, you won’t as much, although Reilly is good enough that it may be worth a watch anyway.