September Blind Spot Review: Stranger Than Fiction (2006)

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“The only way to find out what story you’re in is to determine what stories you’re not in.”
– Professor Jules Hilbert

SYNOPSIS: An I.R.S. auditor suddenly finds himself the subject of narration only he can hear: narration that begins to affect his entire life, from his work, to his love-interest, to his death. – via IMDB

I have always heard that Stranger Than Fiction is a solid movie and that Ferrell is excellent in it (this reason is always cited when I say I am not a huge Ferrell fan) and I have always said I will get to it at some stage and then I never do, which is how it ended up on y 2018 Blind Spot list. I needed to cross it off my list.

Right off, I didn’t know what to expect from this movie when I started it. Was it going to be one of Ferrell’s ridiculous movies, would it be different, what was going to come from it? Well, let me tell you, Ferrell rocked this one. Completely. It was a more contained performance than I am used to seeing from him, and the humour landed for me from him now more than ever. I feel he is sometimes just too OTT and not my cup of tea. I think the cast all worked well together in this to deliver a pretty good comedy drama, and I enjoyed it.

The pacing was good, and I was sold on seeing what, exactly, Harold’s life was all about, because it was super bland, doing the same thing day in and day out. Emma Thompson as writer and narrator fit the role perfectly, and it was entertaining to watch her whenever she was on screen. Maggie Gyllenhaal’s insistence on being a kind anarchist is sweet, too, and Ferrell’s lonely Harold is quite sad. Dustin Hoffman, too, as the weird and quirky writing expert is quite fun, and just to see how all the characters interact and pull together to change the initially drab story is a satisfying experience.

The humour is rather sharp and low key in this, not forceful or over the top or anything like that, and it just worked completely for the story being told. I liked how the story paced itself, never too slow to be boring, never too fast to be confusing. I found myself delighted with Stranger Than Fiction coming to life, as a reader and a moviegoer, there was plenty that worked so well.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed Stranger Than Fiction, and I might very well check it out again someday. Ferrell did not irritate, and it had enough quirk to keep it fun and sweet but not grating or excessively cheesy and with a cast that worked well together, and I can highly recommend it.

March Blind Spot Review: Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004)

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“There was a time, a time before cable. When the local anchorman reigned supreme. When people believed everything they heard on TV. This was an age when only men were allowed to read the news.”
– Bill Lawson

SYNOPSIS: Ron Burgundy is San Diego’s top-rated newsman in the male-dominated broadcasting of the 1970s, but that’s all about to change for Ron and his cronies when an ambitious woman is hired as a new anchor. – via IMDB

Alrighty, putting it out there right now, ripping the band-aid off super fast: NO. Just NO. I did not like this :/

Okay, now that it has been said and I can be called a heathen, I can move on. Since this damn movie came out I have heard how I have to watch it, how it is super hilarious and quotable as all hell, and I have never really had the desire to watch it. Not even the beloved Paul Rudd could tempt me. But it has always been in the corner of my mind, that I should check it out despite not liking the majority of the cast, if for nothing more than to see what the cult status is about.

Well, I don’t get it. Anchorman is painfully stupid. My husband sat through this with me and is usually way more forgiving about movies than I am, and he said this was soul crushing. I have to agree with him. There were like two gems in this movie (Baxter? Bark twice if you’re in Milwaukee) and:

Other than that, this movie is not quotable. It is painful to sit through, and has some completely braindead humour. No, it is not funny if you think about it, and no, it is not funny even if you check your brain at the door (which I consciously bloody well did).

That’s it. Done.