Saturday, August 11, 2012

The Campaign

Starring Will Ferrell, Zach Galifianakis, Dylan McDermott, Jason Sudeikis, Brian Cox, John Lithgow, and Dan Aykroyd

Directed by Jay Roach

Release Date: August 10th, 2012

Cam Brady has run unopposed for Congress four times in North Carolina's 14th district. Brady's public image is a morally upright, faithful Christian man who the voters love. However, his high popularity takes a nose-dive when Brady exposes himself to an affair with a supporter. Then, Brady has an opponent, town "weirdo" Marty Huggins. Now, it's a battle to see who will go to D.C.

Some people don't like Ferrell or Galifianakis. Maybe it's their comedic style, their raunchy jokes....or the fact that many of  the roles they play blend together. Yeah, I'm gonna go with door number 3. Too often, these two comedians get into a groove and just never try to do better. Still, does that make them bad comedians? I'm gonna say that while they're two very funny actors, Ferrell and Galifianakis can do so much more.

As a comedy, The Campaign is very funny. There are a ton of really funny jokes and scenes involving the two leads. One of my favorites has to do with Ferrell's Brady being involved with a snake-handling church and being bitten by snakes. That, and the funniest character is Tim Whatley, played by Dylan McDermott. Whatley is a mysterious and foul-mouthed campaign manager with a habit of vanishing a la Batman. Also, how awesome is it to see Dan Aykroyd and John Lithgow in a movie again? Sure, they're just playing supporting parts, but they're great comedic actors and I'm glad to see them on the big screen again.

However, as a film, The Campaign is very mediocre. It's fairly predictable and the plot is fairly standard. Also, they waste Jason Sudeikis as a straight man to Ferrell. He really gets nothing to do and that's a shame. I had a thought about how the movie could have been better. Perhaps instead of a traditional three-act story, the filmmakers could have used a "mockumentary" style that follows the candidates during the campaign. I feel that would have been more interesting than just "keep the town from being bought by shady businessmen". I feel that while the scenes involving mocking politics are the strongest, the ones involving the story are the weakest.

Final Thoughts: A funny movie, but nothing memorable.

Rating: 3. 5 out of 5

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