August 4, 2006, - 9:42 am
By Debbie Schlussel
This weekend at the box office:
* “Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby“: Hands down, the funniest movie of the year. You’ll laugh your butt off. If you like Will Ferrell, you’ll love this one–which is, by far, his best display of silver screen silly fun. Much better than “Anchorman,” this is what summer movies are supposed to be about–funny, light, escapist, and a good time.
Ricky Bobby (Ferrell) is the fictional NASCAR race-car driver with two first names. The movie is the hilarious story of his rise to NASCAR fame, fall from it, and comeback. It makes fun of NASCAR, NASCAR drivers, and NASCAR drivers’ wives and groupies, but not in a way that makes fun of Middle America (as snooty, sneering Hollywood often does). NASCAR fans, on the other hand, are not ridiculed. Done with the full cooperation of the real-life NASCAR.
You gotta love a movie that makes relentless fun of the French. And this one does. Sacha Baron Cohen, of “Ali G” and “Borat” fame, plays gay French race car driver, Jean Girard. His exaggerated French accent is reminiscent of Peter Seller’s “Inspector Clouseau,” only far more hilarious.
Don’t leave when you think the movie is over. The hilarious out-takes are as funny as the rest of the movie and worth staying for.
We didn’t need the PC Halliburton dig, but other than that, the movie was very enjoyable. Because of sexual and bathroom-style jokes, it’s probably not for young kids. But it’s rated PG and suitable for young teens and up.
* “The Night Listener“: Easily the most bizarre, creepy movie of the year, this one was reminiscent of “Misery” (only not as good). Robin Williams plays a maudlin gay national radio host who falls for a book written by a tragic young boy dying of AIDS and the boy’s adopted mother. Or is there such a boy at all?
Although the in-your-face gay agenda of this movie was jarring and extremely annoying, it is redeeming because it shows the uber-gullibility of activists for left-wing causes and the ability of scam artists to easily exploit them. Frequently, the PC crowd is so naive and agenda-focused, all reason, instinct, and intuition goes out the window–as William’s character so blatantly displays.
Tags: ) and Creepiest (, Anchorman, Clouseau, Debbie Schlussel, Hands down, Inspector, Jean Girard, Misery, race car driver, Ricky Bobby, Ricky Bobby (Ferrell), Robin Williams, Sacha Baron Cohen, Talladega Nights, The Night Listener, Will Ferrell