Archive for March, 2011

The Other Guys

I have to say, I’m not a big fan of Will Ferrell.  Up until today, I would usually say that I hate Will Ferrell.  Last night, my kids decided to watch The Other Guys.  I could hear them all cackling hysterically (including my wife, who until yesterday also hated Will Ferrell) all the way down in the basement.

So … after their rave reviews, I decided to give it a chance … and I’m very glad I did.

I no longer hate Will Ferrell.  I still can’t say that I like him as a comedian (except for his take on Alex Trebek in SNL’s Jeopardy! skits).  I certainly did not laugh out loud anywhere nearly as much as I expected based on what I heard from my familiy last night, but The Other Guys is quite simply the most brilliant thing I’ve ever seen Will Ferrell do.  It’s a spot-on biting satire of Michael Bay style cop buddy movies with a surprisingly intelligent script and an amazingly good cast.  The moment I heard Ice-T narrating it I was hooked, and my only disappointment was in not seeing cameo appearances by Fin & Munch.

There’s more I’d love to say about it, but I don’t want to spoil anything.  If you haven’t seen it yet, watch it.  I’m really sorry I missed this on the big screen.

Three Ken Burns Biographies: Thomas Jefferson, Mark Twain, Frank Lloyd Wright

Three fascinating portraits of three fascinating Americans, spread across three fascinating time periods.  I learnt much more than I expected to about Twain and Wright.  Both of those pieces were far more engaging than I anticipated.  The piece on Jefferson, however, left me wanting more, especially regarding Jefferson’s early years … but perhaps that is because I had already done a fair amount of research on Jefferson’s life whilst watching HBO’s abysmal John Adams miniseries back in 2008.

I’m embarassed to admit that these are the first Ken Burns documentaries that I’ve watched in their entirety.  I’ve seen bits and pieces of his better-known ones, but I’ve never made the time to sit down and watch them all the way through.  Until now.  I think I’m well overdue to take an in-depth look at his depiction of the Civil War.  Time for me to track that down.