Friday, August 13, 2010

The Other Guys

Ah, it's August once again and the summer is almost over. Every year it seems to go by faster and faster and for some it couldn't go fast enough. This has to be the most lukewarm summer at the box office in recent memory. But I found myself liking a good deal of the films that didn't do so well like the A-Team, Robin Hood, Knight and Day, Predators and Get Him to the Greek. They were flawed sure but they were sure fun. This is what's so great about the Other Guys it has that same element of fun and humor. Add to that a really interesting premise for an action film or a comedy for that matter. The main villain here, and trust me this is not a real spoiler, is a hedge fund. That's right, the filmmakers are making a timely comedy about douche bags like Bernie Madoff and giant bastard companies like Goldman Sachs. Throw in odd couple partners Mark Wahlberg and Will Farrell and mix in director Adam McKay's signature bizarre comedic elements and you have yourself a strange but funny summer flick.
Detective Terry Hoitz (Mark Wahlberg) and Detective Allen Gamble (Will Farrell) are two desk jockey cops who live in the shadow of two super cops, Highsmith (Samuel L. Jackson) and Danson (The Rock). Terry is chained to his desk because as a patrol officer he accidentally shot Yankees star Derek Jeter during game 7 of the World Series granting him eternal infamy with the city of New York and within the department. His soft and prissy partner Gamble is smart and efficient but doesn't seem to have a desire to walk the beat. After a strange turn of events the two are thrust into an investigation that puts these two ill-equipped cops up against a shady corporation and puts them at odds with their superiors.
In many ways this was not a run of the mill flick. This is a comedy without a true straight man. Both Hoitz and Gamble are a pair of wacky crazy guys. In fact after viewing the whole movie, I would have to say, if there was a straight man, it would be Will Farrell's Gamble. He's the smart one, even though he says whatever strange shit that happens to come out of his mouth, and he sometimes reverts to his hidden personality, a pimp named Gator. (Some of the funniest bits by the way) But other than that he's the guy pushing the investigation, meanwhile, Terry is good at kicking ass but he seems to be about as dumb as a post. He has serious anger issues which always seems to make the situation worse. You've got some great back up support from veteran comedians like Michael Keaton who plays the chief. It's really great to see him back in a solid comedy again, especially where he doesn't have to play multiples of himself or voice a creepy looking snowman. I also really liked Steve Coogan as a shameless Wall Street crook, he was pretty hilarious addition as they try to protect him from his superiors and even from himself. And Eva Mendes, who knew she could be funny. She's certainly hot but I was really surprised to see her hold her own with Will Farrell.
Overall it was a solid comedy with some timely satire. The duo here was solid, I would really like to see Mark Wahlberg do some more comedies, I never realized how funny he could be. And most importantly I really dug watching the both of them, Farrell and Wahlberg, together. So I'm game for a sequel if those guys are. I really enjoyed the change of pace of villain and if you stay through the credits you'll enjoy a history lesson of the past few years how the large corporations have fucked America up the ass. It's a charming scroll of information and if you can contain yourself enough to watch the whole thing you actually walk away with some interesting information. So if you don't go to see the Expendables then you should definitely check this one out. The action is fun the comedy is fucking hilarious and it gives you a little satisfaction that the fat cats can go to jail sometimes too.
Grade 3 Buckets

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