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May 28, 2007

DVD Journal: "Talladega Nights"

Michael Blowhard writes:

Dear Blowhards --

Talladega Nights. For the first 20 minutes of this NASCAR-themed comedy hit I was in agony. The filmmaking was so flimsy, cheap, and hectic that watching it was like being trapped in a big-box store on kiddie-special day. But then the improv-style comedy grew wilder, the ideas revealed barbs and fangs, and -- what the heck -- I gave over and had myself a good time.

This was my first Will Ferrell movie, so I could be completely wrong in my view of him. But he struck me as midway between Adam Sandler and Jim Carrey, goofily wholesome as well as unstoppably bullish -- he's likable, but he's a little frightening too. The inspired weisenheimers who make up the rest of the film's cast include John C. Reilly as Ferrell's worhipful / resentful best buddy and second banana; Gary Cole as Ferrell's never-to- be-tamed rapscallion dad; Leslie Bibb as a redneck honey whose eyes and chest always find their way to where the money is; and the weird Sacha Baron-Cohen as a gay Frenchman who conquers NASCAR -- he amuses himself behind the wheel reading Camus' "L'Etranger" as he suavely whips the uncouth Americans at their own game.



posted by Michael at May 28, 2007


You should watch Ferrell's more 'serious' Stranger Than Fiction, it's weird, kinda arty, with a really hot tattooed Maggie Gyllenhaal, and I'm positive you'd enjoy it. Perfect representation of auditors as well.

Posted by: omar on May 28, 2007 6:41 AM

Do you know there is a Bollywood Nascar movie, shot on I think some of the same racetracks? It's called Ta Ra Rum Pum, I think. Hilarious.

*Haven't seen the movie, but 'More Cowbell' endears Will Ferrell to me, like, forever.

Posted by: MD on May 28, 2007 6:26 PM

Talladega Nights was the first Ferrell movie I'd seen -- and I really enjoyed it. Good goofy stupid humor that does exactly what it sets out to do. An especially memorable bit is the explanation for why Ricky Bobby choses to pray to the Baby Jesus even though Jesus did grow up...

Stranger than Fiction is completely different -- but it is a wonderful film, one I plan to rewatch some day.

Posted by: Paul Worthington on May 29, 2007 12:13 PM

I loved "Talladega Nights" and I'm not really a fan of Ferrell. Very entertaining stuff. The "recovery" movement is completely at a stage of self-parody isn't it?

Posted by: jult52 on June 2, 2007 8:06 AM

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