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Overall Rating

Awesome: 9.46%
Worth A Look: 39.19%
Pretty Bad: 2.7%
Total Crap: 4.05%

8 reviews, 26 user ratings

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Blades of Glory
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by Erik Childress

"No Legends. No Ballads. Just Good, Solid Laughs."
4 stars

I suppose thereís a day when Will Ferrellís shtick will get old. But I donít foresee the day when Iíll stop laughing at it. Jon Heder, on the other hand, was old by the time they filmed the extended theatrical ending for Napoleon Dynamite. A fire-and-ice combination if there ever was one. Could Ferrell elevate Hederís preening, forced mug to a tolerable level or would his partner drag him down faster than a piece of direction by Todd Phillips? Fortunately for them the film doesnít rely solely on their efforts as directors Josh Gordon and Will Speck spread the laughs around (perhaps a bit thin given the deep cast of comic pros) and deliver more than enough hardy ones to make Blades of Glory not quite Anchorman or Talladega Nights but a good enough entry to round out Ferrellís humbled arrogance trilogy.

Adding to that resume of Ron Burgundy and Ricky Bobby, Ferrell gives us Chazz Michael Michaels. Every sport these days needs a bad boy and Chazz is that to figure skating. Described as ďsex on iceĒ, Chazz doesnít so much skate as he does distract the crowd with his antics and play to the ladies. His polar opposite is the more traditional portrait of male figure skating, Jimmy McElroy (Heder), who was plucked from his orphanage at a young age by a wealthy opportunist (William Fichtner) who figured he could breed a skating champion just as he has with thoroughbreds. When the two ice rivals trade blows over a shared gold medal, they are banned from menís singles until Jimmy recognizes a loophole in the system just in time for the next Winter Games.

Jimmy and Chazz can team up for doubles, a category dominated by the brother/sister team of Stranz & Fairchild Van Waldenberg (Will Arnett & Amy Poehler). After the expected animosity begins to simmer down, Jimmyís ex-coach (Craig T. Nelson) develops their routine with a little grace, a lot of homoerotic imagery and enough enthusiasm for him to reattempt the most dangerous finishing move in all of skating (a demonstration of which earns maybe the filmís biggest laugh.) The Van Walderbergís will do anything to prevent this freakshow from taking their spotlight, going so far as to pimp their younger sister, Katie (Jenna Fischer), whom they constantly guilt trip as the cause of their parentís death, to come between the two.

Ferrell can get half his laughs just entering a room (a fact I wouldnít be surprised to find Iíve expressed in previous reviews) but he always has a few new areas to wet his feet. Chazzís sex addict mentality (an affliction he proudly and frequently refers to) is a nice counter to Jimmyís more effeminate mannerisms. Itís a shame Gordon & Speck didnít find more to do with this angle, just as they miss a greater satiric slant on the sport itself, but they supplement it with many individual scenes and oddities that work independent of every overlooked opportunity. Jimmy & Katie getting awkwardly sexualized advice during a phone conversation and, perhaps, the first foot chase ever conducted on ice skates are standouts to take away the bitter taste of seeing Nick Swardson sucking the comic vibe out of every frame heís in as a crazed stalker of Jimmyís.

(In the interest of full disclosure, Swardson has picked numerous fights with the writers of this website. But not with me and I hold no ill-will towards him Ė especially when he makes me laugh on Reno 911. But he is so out of the league of the other comic performers here and I donít know why the filmmakers chose to forego the atypical outtakes and blunders during the end credits and instead go with an extended sequence of nothing but Swardson playing with dolls. Itís not funny. He already hasnít inspired one laugh during the film and this epilogue may be just enough for less forgiving comic fans on the fence of recommending this film to go the other way.)

I apologize to everyone else associated with Blades for that aside, because I was truly laughing very hard throughout most of the film. Without spoiling the finale, the song choice for the climactic routine between Chazz & Jimmy is such an inspired bit that I wish the routine itself matched the lunacy of their qualifying run, for which Gordon & Speck actually film with great authority. Therein is the cross to bear for Blades of Glory. It has the potential for gold at times and settles for a solid silver. Fichtner & Nelson get their licks in but are vastly underused as is The 40 Year-Old Virginís Romany Malco as a dance instructor. Jenna Fischer parlays her role from TVís The Office into line readings so subtly refined in their discomfort that only a gifted comic actress as herself could pull them off and make a delayed reaction on our part doubly enjoyable. And then thereís Ferrell, whom Iím going to continue to let into the door, even with the humbled arrogance hat on. Cause one Anchorman or Talladega Nights is worth sitting through two or three more films as amusing as Blades of Glory.

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originally posted: 03/30/07 14:00:00
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User Comments

6/28/13 raouljohn Good entertainment from all involved. 5 stars
12/05/11 Pamela White a diasater 1 stars
7/18/10 Ron Will Ferrell isn't even funny accidently 1 stars
5/31/08 Doug Laughed so hard I cried during their first pair skating event. Not great, but good movie. 4 stars
4/12/08 John Millheim I LMAO, it was real funny. very good comedy 5 stars
1/22/08 Phil M. Aficionado From hilarious to stupid & back a few times; inspired silliness. Laughs? More than a few. 4 stars
1/22/08 gcc Slows down a bit in the 2nd half, but Will Farrell... always hilarious 4 stars
9/29/07 David Cohen I thought the previews looked really dumb, but the movie turned out to be pretty good 4 stars
9/03/07 Melissa i was ROFLMAO. funny! 5 stars
9/03/07 DUSTIN P. I WILL MARRY THIS MOVIE!!! 5 stars
9/02/07 orpy Love Wil Ferrell but this was BAAADDDD, sucked! 2 stars
8/24/07 edmond leung Oh, my god. I couldn't stop laughing 4 stars
7/03/07 William Goss Funnier than expected, with Ferrell kept on the perfect length leash. Solid silly fun. 4 stars
6/27/07 Randoo So many things were just wrong, but a funny movie none the less 4 stars
4/19/07 MP Bartley The chase scene is a thing of genius. The rest of the film however... 3 stars
4/17/07 Brittany it deserves and oscar. 5 stars
4/14/07 Corey Z SWARDSON RULES 3 stars
4/14/07 Danny Ferrell back to his stupid best, after the awful talledega. 4 stars
4/11/07 mikeconcho I thought the movie was way better than Talledega but just under Anchorman. 5 stars
4/10/07 Dan Worse than Talledega, can't touch Anchorman's greatness. Needed a better supporting cast. 2 stars
4/10/07 Darren Shea Not horrible,but unable to reach its full potential.+1 star if you REALLY like Will Ferrell 3 stars
4/04/07 cybrwolf A little predictable but filled with funny gay jokes and will ferrell being will ferrell 5 stars
4/04/07 Summersweet207 I love Will Ferrell, I think he is so funny, in this movie it was so stupid but yet funny. 4 stars
4/02/07 Quigley One of the biggest wastes of time to hit theaters ever. I hope it will be forgotten forever 1 stars
4/01/07 Leo Appropriately ridiculous. 4 stars
4/01/07 Ole Man Bourbon Dazzling and stupid. 4 stars
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  30-Mar-2007 (PG-13)
  DVD: 28-Aug-2007

  06-Apr-2007 (12A)
  DVD: 06-Aug-2007


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