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Blades of Glory

April 9, 2007

I know what you are thinking, and I know what you want to ask, so I’ll just ask it for you to save you time. Alex, why the hell did you see blades of glory? Because I love seeing movies, that’s why. I wasn’t expecting much at all, but fortunately this was a very funny movie whose problems dig deep. So deep in fact that they go unnoticed to everyone watching. The fortunate thing is that this is a good comedy flick and worth your time if you want some laughs. It may not be a memorable movie, and it won’t gain cult status like other related movies have, but it’s definitely a step up in both main actors careers, even if it doesn’t really show any promise.

The premise is everything you would have expected from a movie containing either main actor. Jon Heder plays a dumb but ultimately sweet pretty boy who has gained cult status as a flawless ice skater Jimmy MacElory, and Will Ferrell plays a half-skater half-sex idol Chazz Michael Michaels. Jimmy “still looks like a fifteen year old girl but not hot,” and Chazz’s personal philosophy is “clothing optional.” They are warring rivals in the competitive (and apparently completely ridiculous) world of figure skating, and they both get banned from the men’s singles division when they beat each other up when they tie during a competition. After three and a half years of vomiting and selling skating related products, they reunite to compete in the doubles competition. Together. With twin dongs. The plot is as always predictable and stupid, but this movie was never meant to be anything more than predictable and stupid, so it’s not really bad when the main characters fight over a girl who is equally as stupid as Jimmy, have to deal with an unbelievably cliche rival brother-sister pair who you always knew would end up making out with one another in the end, and building an awkward friendship despite their differences.

The noteworthy part of this movie is the humor and laughs that it delivers. Not on any sophisticated levels, but what were you expecting from a movie with these two people in it. Like Anchorman, this isn’t afraid to be obnoxious. And in a good way. It’s all lighthearted humor, but it’s not afraid to touch on the gay stuff. Which is good, because it’s the kind of humor that people appreciate in this day and age. Maybe not the people who may have gone to see Ricky Bobby, or perhaps more accurately not the people who were too offended by their “sport” being slammed to go see Ricky Bobby. In any case, only a certain niche of people will appreciate the two actors 69’ing on the ice while fireworks are exploding out of their feet, or for that matter anything in the semifinal which is by far the gayest ice skating performance you have ever seen. And no one won’t laugh when they see the historic North Korean ice skating footage. This movie is well written and funny, and half of the humor will most likely go past a thirteen year olds head.

Upon walking into the theater I had middle ground hopes that were surpassed. No question, this is Will Ferrell’s funniest movie since anchorman and Jon Heder’s funniest (well, only funny) movie since Napoleon Dynamite. And yes, Will Ferrell was at one point a funny actor, most notably in Zoolander and the Ladies Man, with a funny over the top style, and no, I don’t care what you contend. Anchorman is the obvious winner though, and I could probably watch that movie one hundred times and still laugh when Steve Carell harpoons the Spaniard on the horse. And yes, it’s true, I love Napoleon Dynamite. It may have been ludicrously milked by the constant ‘Vote For Pedro’ t-shirts and endless quotations, but it would be criminal to call it anything other than a well written comedy. It’s a cultural staple too, whether or not people like it. And I think the fact that I love both of those movies made watching Blades of Glory a little more subtly painful. These characters are not original. In fact, their personalities and actions almost completely mirror that of their previous films. Jon Heder is still, for all intents and purposes, the dumb teenager that he played in Napoleon Dynamite. He is awarded with blue skittles on numerous occasions, drinks juice boxes, plays gameboy, and does odd choreographed skating while dressed as a peacock. The good thing is most of these details are subtle and they build his character over time. Will Ferrell on the other hand is an obvious mesh of Ricky Bobby and Ron Burgundy, and we’ve seen his character one too many times.

Standing alone this movie is pretty damn good, but it’s unoriginal as all getout, even when it tries not to be, and I can only imagine the writers thinking to themselves how smart they are for milking characters that have already made millions. And not just the characters, but the styles of their preceding movies as well. Yes, it’s still funny when Will Ferrell tries to get Jimmy to “carve some ice with his weiner,” but that really doesn’t mean anything because no one is going anywhere. It’s the same humor as Anchorman and Napoleon Dynamite crammed into one movie, which might be what you’re looking for. I laughed when Jimmy tells Chazz he is stupid because night is dark for everyone, to which he responds “Not to be people in Alaska. Or dudes with night-vision goggles.” It’s an alright movie, and possibly a relevant movie in the careers of two otherwise completely irrelevant actors. My advice, if you think you have seen this before just skip it, it’s not rewarding and you won’t be too surprised, but if you are looking for a movie to see over the weekend and you grow tired of all the slasher flicks, this WILL make you giggle, however silly and stupid it is.

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