Blades Of Glory

Blades Of Glory


Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray

Will Ferrell is Hollywood’s comedy store. He never stops working. Judging by box office receipts, audiences love him. And yet, for those like me who don’t get it, what’s funny?

After playing a moronic racing car driver in Talladega Nights, he’s scratching his crotch again as a mid-Western, long-haired, spandex-wrapped, foul-mouthed, sex-addicted figure skater. The idea is absurd, like a moose in Swan Lake – the ultimate victory of the vulgar.

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At the top of the skating firmament are two very different stars, Chazz Michael Michaels (Ferrell), who relishes his Guns N’ Roses image of excess, and Jimmy MacElroy (Jon Heder), the blond-mopped prodigy, whose virginal gaucheness is too girly to be gay. After sharing gold at an international competition, Chazz attacks Jimmy on the podium and an ugly brawl ensues, the result of which is a lifetime ban for both.

Work in a sports store and as a wicked wizard in a children’s ice show follows with predictable results before a conscientious coach (Craig T Nelson) discovers a loophole in the ruling. Chazz and Jimmy cannot compete in individual competition ever again, but there is nothing to stop them entering as a pair. Two men dancing on ice? Two men who hate each other? It’s never been done before.

The situation is ripe for farce and the stunts are good, but the humour remains below the waist, dominated by Ferrell’s overbearing machismo. This leaves Heder in the unenviable position of playing the female lead, while attempting to defend his masculinity. He does well, considering what he is up against, and manages to portray the emotionally retarded Jimmy as a competitive sportsman, rather than a camp victim of stereotyping.

The panto villains are the brother and sister Van Waldenbergs (Will Arnett and Amy Poehler), main rivals for gold at the Montreal Winter Olympics. They add a touch of Cruella De Vil to the proceedings, while hinting at forbidden desires – oh yes, it’s all going on!

Ferrill’s redneck ravings will appeal to his sexist admirers, but do nothing for the Jim Carrey fan club, who prefers comic bravura to dry humping and boobology. The skating’s the best part and if these actors learnt half of what they do before calling in the body doubles, they deserve respect.

What they don’t deserve is applause. Blame the script and Chazz’s jockstrap.

Reviewed on: 04 Apr 2007
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Blades Of Glory packshot
Rival male figure skaters who hate each other enter the Montreal Winter Olympics in the pairs section.
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Director: Josh Gordon, Will Speck

Writer: Jeff Cox, Craig Cox

Starring: Will Ferrell, Jon Heder, Will Arnett, Amy Poehler, Jenna Fischer, William Fichtner, Craig T Nelson, Romany Malco, Nick Swardson, Scott Hamilton, Andy Richter

Year: 2007

Runtime: 93 minutes

BBFC: 12A - Adult Supervision

Country: US


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