Step Brothers

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step brothers
Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly team up for more fun.

The critics sure fought in the lobby after this. Half of us were laughing non-stop during the entire movie. The other half just sat there, with arms crossed, thinking we must be brain dead imbeciles to laugh at such a juvenile movie.

I’ve grown tired of Will Ferrell’s man-child character, but with John C. Reilly it worked in Talladega Nights, and with that director – Adam McKay – they created a movie that’s even funnier. Those actors also basically co-wrote the movie with some good adlibs. For laughing out loud, it will be the top comedy of the year.

It’s a Judd Apatow produced picture, which means it’s a hardcore R rating.

Ferrell and Reilly play Brennan and Dale (even the names crack me up). They watch a lot of TV, read dirty magazines, wear ‘70s T-shirts (Pablo Cruise), and haven’t grown up.

They are forced to live together when their parents get married. It was brilliant casting to have them played by Mary Steenburgen and Richard Jenkins. Since the family combines, these two end up sharing a bedroom. As they lay in bed resenting each other, we get lines like “I will punch you while you sleep, you curly haired f***!” I have no clue why that is hysterical to me, but it is. Maybe it’s because they both have curly hair. Reilly tells Ferrell he’s stupid, and “This is a house of learned doctors. My dad just married your mom because he felt sorry for her. And she’s kinda hot.”

Listening to Ferrell, as he slams his plate down at the wedding, scream “And I wanted chicken, not the salmon!” Haven’t we all been to the wedding where we thought that? Well, he yells it out, for all to hear.

It would be crazy to try and tell you the plot of the movie. It’s all just a vehicle for their shenanigans. I’ll give it a try, though. Brennan has a younger brother (the hysterically jerky Adam Scott). He scolds his young children for missing a note when they’re in the mini van singing Guns ‘N Roses. He convinces the parents they should sell their home, retire, and sail in their yacht (one of the guys wonders why you’d put the house on the market if it’s not haunted).

This gets the step brothers, who have since bonded over their mutual love of ninjas and dinosaurs, to plot against their parents.

Since the parents have been pressuring them to get jobs, they also sabotage all job interviews. Now, in case you haven’t figured it out – the film is totally unrealistic. It’s just crazy slapstick, balls-to-the-wall craziness. Yet it’s funny.

The interview with Seth Rogen is bizarre, but one with a woman named Pam had me in stitches. I wouldn’t even be able to describe it.

The brothers eventually start a production company called Prestige World Wide, which includes what may be the funniest rap song you’ll ever hear called Boats and ‘Hos.

The supporting characters in this are all great. The Daily Show’s Rob Riggle yelling “Pow! The Catalina Wine Mixer!” (okay, you have to be there to appreciate that).

Saturday Night Live’s Horatio Sanz as a Billy Joel tribute band singer (that specializes in the later stuff)…they all work so well with the craziness of Reilly and Ferrell. You can’t go into the movie hating Ferrell. I’m not that fond of Adam Sandler movies either, but liked Punch Drunk Love, and laughed enough in Billy Madison and Spanglish to consider them passable entertainment. Everybody loves Anchorman, and I can count the funny scenes from that on one hand. In this movie, I laughed out loud at least 25 times, and don’t think I ever stopped laughing the entire movie. It could be something as simple as a worn out Richard Jenkins muttering “I’m going to the Cheesecake Factor.” It could be the bunk-bed breaking (shown in the previews with different dialogue); the obsession Reilly has with his drum set and how Ferrell isn’t allowed to touch it. There’s a sleepwalking episode that kills me. One hysterical moment my friend didn’t even get. A woman is standing at a urinal, looking back at Reilly. She has the throw away line “Stay golden, Pony Boy.” (it’s from the corny 80s film The Outsiders).

It’s a crazy comedy, but it does what a comedy should – it makes you laugh.

I’m giving it a B+.

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