The Other Guys

2010-10-15 11:28
 
 
What it's about:

The public heroes of the NYPD are a couple of overbearing and idiotic action guys who thrill in the chaos of unbelievably destructive high speed chases and gun battles. They live the live of celebrities as far as the city is concerned. Meanwhile, the rest of the detective branch of their precinct are simply paper pushers, grunt-workers - "the other guys" - none more so than Gamble and Hoitz (played by Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg), who are at the very bottom of the proverbial pile.

What we thought:

If there's a flaw to ascribe to The Other Guys, it's that the first two acts are actually too good, so that what should be the climax of the film just comes off as satisfactory. By that time we're so sore from chuckling or actually laughing out loud, it's just too much. 

Truth is, when an American mainstream comedy gets it mostly right, it is a thing of beauty. Ferrell/McKay's Anchorman is one example. The Other Guys is another.  And though both owe their longevity to clever scripts and witty one-liners, the ultimate proof, it seems, is in the casting.

The biggest win is the genius pairing of insanely-hyper-quirky Ferrell with the completely straight-playing Wahlberg. Well, straight in the sense that his Hoitz is as agressively cop-like as his Dignam in The Departed (2006), and the combination comes off like ten tons of TNT in every scene. 

Elsewhere, Dwayne Johnson and Samuel L. Jackson are terrific as the god-like Highsmith and Danson, who turn out to be not quite as god-like as they would like to believe. Michael Keaton makes an understated but effective return to comedy as the Captain. And Eva Mendes is astonishingly sexy as the unappreciated though irritatingly naïve and good-natured cop wife.

The film cleverly touches on and then brazenly molests more than a few cop-movie staples, from the rich bad guy (a better than usual Steve Coogan) to the douche bag colleagues. The uncredited narrative voice-over is even the Original Gangster Ice-T himself, which is a nice touch.

But in truth the film's magnanimous comedy lies in its dialogue (a lot of it may or may not be improvised) and its ridiculous delivery in ridiculous circumstances. It has the effect of parodying those ultra-serious but implausible cop movies, but making the best of its actors' recognised talents.

In one scene, after our two "heroes" have nearly been blown up, they lie writhing on the ground in pain. Gamble feels compelled to yell at the top of his voice: "Aaaahhhh!!!! How do they walk away in movies without flinching when it explodes behind them? There's no way! The movie industry's completely irresponsible for the way they portray explosions."

Easily a candidate for best comedy of the year.


Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg make a hilarious odd couple of detectives in a candidate for best comedy of the year.

K@sh 2010/10/05 11:56 AM
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i thought this was one of the most stupidist movies ive ever seen.. i laughed cos it was completely ridiculous... Reminds me of the Naked Gun movies..
lerato 2010/10/05 5:24 PM
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the film is mediocre, not worth the 50 bucks
lerato 2010/10/05 5:25 PM
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the film is mediocre, not worth the 50 bucks
c0ld 2010/10/08 3:13 PM
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I quite enjoyed the movie. Seems that many people didn't really "get" the intent behind the movie. It took all the usual "buddy cop movie" tropes we see from this kind of fare and took them to the Nth level. Perhaps it helped that I caught "Cop out" on dvd the same week I saw this.
easey 2010/10/20 2:59 PM
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Its silly funny, but not close to 4 out of 5. Maybe 3 out of 5... MAX!
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