March 30, 2007, - 1:42 pm
By Debbie Schlussel
Of the two big box office releases this weekend, neither are that great. But the far more preferable one is, of course, the one starring the ever hilarious Will Ferrell:
* “Blades of Glory“–When it comes to Will Ferrell flicks, this is hardly his funniest, but it’ll do.
Ferrell plays semi-mullet-haired, cheesy Olympic ice skater, Chazz Michael Michaels, who gets into a brawl with his rival, effeminate skater, Jimmy MacElroy (Jon Heder). As a result, both get banned for life from skating. But in a rules loophole, they discover that nothing bans them from pairs skating. They return from being relegated to selling skates to kids and performing in cheap ice shows for kids to become the first male-male pairs skating team in world competition.
But they are competing against the underhanded, incestuous Van Waldenberg brother and sister team, who send their younger sister (Jenna Fischer–Pam, from TV’s “The Office”) to spy on them.
Michaels is a sex addict, and there is a lot of tasteless sex and bathroom humor in this movie. But it’s definitely funny to watch the non-stop parody of the easily-parodied ice-skating world, complete with cameos by many of the famous ice skaters we’ve come to know (Dorothy Hammill, Peggy Fleming, Nancy Kerrigan). They made a mistake not putting Tonya Harding in this movie.
The movie is not as funny as other Ferrell fare, like last year’s “Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby” (which I thought was last year’s funniest). And I expected more. I kept waiting for it to be more funny, but it wasn’t. Close enough, though, for a weekend escape from real life. The skating routines are very funny, and you’ll definitely laugh–just not as hard as you expected to.
Best on-ice routine: The Van Waldenbergs perform as John F. Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe (complete with pill-popping) on ice. If only we could see more of that kind of thing in real life pro and Olympic skating, both would be far more exciting.
* “The Lookout“–Truth in trailers sure doesn’t apply to this one. This movie looks like it’ll be exciting and thrilling. It’s neither. Just depressing and a waste of time.
A popular, rich, star high-school jock (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) in small town Kansas drives too daringly and gets in a major car accident. Some of his friends die, one is seriously injured, and he loses his short-term memory and ability to function in a normal life. He now lives with his blind roommate (Jeff Daniels) and relives his every day trying to remember his normal routine of waking up and showering.
In a bar, he meets a smooth-talking former schoolmate (who, strangely, in Kansas, has a New Jersey accent) and his good-looking female friends, including a former stripper (played by the annoying Sacha Baron Cohen’s Omani-born fiancee). The stripper comes on to him and the smooth-talking “friend” convinces him to take part in a bank robbery on the bank at which he works as a late-night janitor. At the last minute, he changes his mind, but his thuggish new friends–including a self-parodied “Uncle Bone”–don’t exactly let him. Predictable.
This movie is depressing and dreadful. Long and boring, you’ll feel empty afterward. Skip it. I warned you.
Tags: bank, bank robbery, Blades of Glory, car accident, Chazz Michael Michaels, cheesy Olympic ice skater, Debbie Schlussel, Dorothy Hammill, effeminate skater, janitor, Jeff Daniels, Jenna Fischer, Jimmy MacElroy, John F. Kennedy, Jon Heder, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Kansas, late-night janitor, Marilyn Monroe, Michael Michaels, Nancy Kerrigan, New Jersey, Olympic, Peggy Fleming, Ricky Bobby, Sacha Baron Cohen, Talladega Nights, The Lookout, Thriller, Tonya Harding, Van Waldenberg, Will Ferrell