That should have been my first clue.
Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story comes from the same people as Superbad, Knocked Up, The 40 Year-Old Virgin and Talledaga Nights. But unlike these films, Walk Hard – a would-be parody of Walk the Line – seems to fall exceedingly short.
This review should be short and sweet – the movie was already a waste of time.
THE SET UP? Young Dewey Cox, growing up in a provincial family in the country somewhere, accidently causes the death of his brother (he cuts him in half with a machete) and therefore goes through childhood trauma, but out of his despair he discovers a love and a gift of music. Will Dewey make it? Will Dewey go on drugs? Will Dewey leave his first wife for the far more attractive and supportive back up singer? If you’ve seen Walk the Line you’ll know the answers to these questions, and therefore the (very) rough plot of this film written by upcoming comic heavy weight Judd Apatow.
John C. Reilly is Dewey Cox. Up until fairly recently Reilly had successfully proven his ability to act well in film, however with some of his recent outings, namely this “film” and Talladega Nights I feel somewhat reminded of Andy Millman in When the Whistle Blows, an actor who is embarrassing himself for the purposes of fame. “Are you ‘aving a laugh?”
Jenna Fischer plays Darlene Madison, the Reese Witherspoon equivalent and second wife of Dewey Cox. As much as I love Fischer as Pam in the US Office it is becoming clear she is incapable of acting in anything else with any conviction. Harsh but true.
The only delight of Walk Hard comes from the endless stream of cameos throughout the film, the most memorable scene in the film is set in India with Cox and his band talking to the Beatles, played to parodic perfection by Paul Rudd, Jack Black, Jason Schwartsman and Justin Long. Now that was a good rip-off – easily the best written part of the film as well. These guys, all uncredited, knew how to embody their characters to actually be oddly and brilliantly convincing as Lennon, MacCartney, Ringo and Harrison (resp.) – unlike Reilly and Fischer who were just pretending to be these other people, as if knowing what they were doing was pointless.
A bit harsh I know. Moving on.
WHY SHOULD YOU SEE IT? Beats me. Maybe if you want a reasonably light hearted comedy, that doesn’t involve too much thinking, this is a film for you. It can be entertaining at times, but I left the theatre wondering “Now, why did I see that?”
WHO SHOULD YOU SEE IT WITH/ANY BITS? I’ll deal with these two questions together. If you go see it, see it with people who aren’t embarrassed by male and female nudity. On the plus side, equality, right? Swearing is minimal, could have done with more 😛
THIS FILM GETS 1.5 GOLD STARS (Paul Rudd took it from 1.0 – 1.5)