Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Have You Seen It? #2: The Other Guys (2010)

Originally Appears in Issue 5. Out Now on DVD.

The Other Guys is yet another solid instalment in the long running series of films where Will Ferrell has some amusing occupation. This one however is elevated beyond the Semi Pro’s of the world due to the presence of Mark Wahlberg. Both play detectives, Ferrell as a pencil-pushing desk jockey and Wahlberg as his tough-as-nails but emotionally fragile partner.

Playing the role 100% straight, Wahlburg acts as a perfect foil for Ferrell’s madcap antics, with many of the film’s comedic high points involving his general bewilderment towards his oafish partners actions. Add to this a supporting cast that features Samuel L. Jackson, Dwayne Johnson and a criminally underused Michael Keaton, and The Other Guys has all the ingredients in place. To its credit, the film succeeds for the first hour, with wall-to-wall one-liners and the usual Will Ferrell buffoonery to keep the fans appeased. There is some vague story behind the laughs which has something to do with Steve Coogan and money or something, but it’s just a tool to get our heroes into more turmoil

The director, Adam McKay who has directed several Ferrell hits, shows a surprising flair for action with several superb set pieces littered throughout the film. But his combination of action and comedy sadly falls short in the film’s second half, when it simply runs out of steam. It’s a shame, because everyone involved is on top form and the film, which could have been have been Anchorman good, just ends up being good. --Jesse Melia

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