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Reviews of The Other Guys
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I don’t like Will Ferrell movies. Almost without exception I don’t like them. I usually avoid them. I do like Mark Wahlberg, though, and know he has good comic timing and delivery so … what the hell. I liked it. Will Ferrell rarely became annoying as an actor and was only appropriately annoying as the character. Wahlberg delivered a comic performance beyond even what I expected. There was some fine stuntwork and plenty of good supporting performances. Not a great movie, but well worth seeing.
Its a simple buddy cop movie formula: take Mark Wahlberg and Will Ferrell, make Mark Wahlberg the cagey insecure one, Will Ferrell the quiet conservative, add one hell of a funny Michael Keaton, stir and enjoy.
Like all Will Ferrell movies, The Other Guys is just an onslaught of funny, hilarious and quotable scenes and lines that, unlike all Will Ferrell movies, successfully keeps you laughing throughout. Besides the horribly underused Steve Coogan, who was also not very funny at all, all cast were consistently funny and kept the movie at a great pace for an action comedy.
This movie also achieves the impossible by making Mark Wahlberg lovable again, with the bulk of the quotable lines and hilarious scenes with Will Ferrell; he seemed to land his comedic timing perfectly. But, Michael Keaton kills it, when his character comes on screen, he always stole the show.
My loathsome attitude to ‘full-blown’ Will Ferrell is common knowledge with those who have been reading my reviews the past few years. He just has a knack to go too far and regress into a large, blithering child. It used to work with small supporting roles or comic relief parts such as in Old School, but once the American public grabbed hold, the joke wore thin when needing to sustain itself for a two-hour duration. But then something happened a couple years ago with Step Brothers. BFF, director, and production partner Adam McKay and he did the unthinkable—Ferrell scaled back on the obnoxious and let his surrounding cast pick up some of the slack. The result was a delightfully absurd romp alongside John C. Reilly, bringing many more laughs than headshaking. But no matter how surprised I was to find one Gary Sanchez film worthwhile, nothing prepared me to experience a second so quickly; yet here it is. The Other Guys—at least the first two-thirds—is belly laugh funny.
It’s interesting to note that a guy like Mark Wahlberg, full of confidence and stage presence while lacking an impressive amount of pure acting talent, can seem so unnatural when attempting a serious role devoid of gunplay or street talk and so fluid in overt comedy. You hear it all the time, how comedy is in fact the toughest duty of a thespian, to have the timing and attitude to pull it off when forlorn and depressed can be found at will. Wahlberg simply has what it takes to bring a laugh. Maybe it’s because he’s not the greatest actor and we can laugh with him, but I have to give the guy more credit than that. He really knows the beats and expressions necessary to get the job done and this role ranks up there with I Heart Huckabees as my favorites of his. He may be the tough, skilled, and brash half of the Hoitz and Gamble team, but somehow McKay and co-writer Chris Henchy got the script to make him the funny man. Ferrell’s Allen—bland, doltish, and ripe for ridicule—becomes the straight man, sitting back as Wahlberg’s glares and insults fall flat. In fact, they may both be the straight man, the tension between them standing in as the joke.
For completion of review: http://www.jaredmobarak.com/2010/08/03/the-other-guys/