Movie Review: Semi-Pro – Starring Will Ferrell & Woody Harrelson

by Jason of New Movie Friday on February 29, 2008

in Movie Reviews

Semi-Pro - SoundtrackMovie: Semi-Pro (R)
Released: February 29th, 2008
Runtime: 1 hr. 30 min.
Ticket Price: $7.50 Matinee
Refreshments: None
Starring: Will Ferrell, Woody Harrelson, André Benjamin, Will Arnett & Rob Corddry
Director: Kent Alterman

Rating: Check it Out When it Hits the Likes of HBO or Showtime

Synopsis: Jackie Moon had one hit song in the 1970s and used the money he made from that to become the owner-coach-player of the Flint Michigan Tropics of the ABA. He finds out that the ABA and NBA are going to merge, but only four teams will be making the move to the other league. The rest will fold. He gets them to agree to the best four teams in the league being the teams that make the move and tries to motivate his team to shoot for fourth-place and a chance at the NBA.

Review: Semi-Pro isn’t even semi-funny. While it isn’t as bad as the terrible Strange Wilderness from a few weeks ago, it isn’t much better. If it weren’t for the great costuming and the occasional humorous bit, it would be much the same, as it is as poorly put together as that was.

If you are looking to laugh, keep looking. Better yet, if you are looking to laugh at Will Ferrell, go rent Anchorman or last year’s Blades of Glory. Those bring enough of the funny to go along with the bits that bomb big-time. Semi-Pro only seems to have the latter and not very much of the former.

This is Will Ferrell’s worst movie to date, and remember, he starred in Bewitched. Maybe his shtick is wearing thin. He plays roughly the same character in every movie. As per usual, some of his funnier stuff is what they used in the commercials and trailers to entice you into the theater, so you have already seen it and it isn’t funny anymore. Usually, you just need to wind him up and let him go, but here he doesn’t go anywhere, well at least not any place funny.

There are a lot of funny people that pop up throughout, like Will Arnett (TV’s Arrested Development), Rob Corddry (TV’s The Daily Show), Ed Helms (TV’s The Office) Tim Meadows (TV’s Saturday Night Live), Andy Richter (TV’s Quintuplets), Jason Sudeikis, (TV’s Saturday Night Live), Kristen Wiig (TV’s Saturday Night Live), but unfortunately, none of them are all that funny either. Well, the exception might be Arnett, as one of the TV commentators, who has a few good lines.

You should wait to check Semi-Pro out one day when it hits the likes of HBO or Showtime. Seeing this at a theater is a waste of your hard earned cash. Will Ferrell and his compatriots should have to actually try and not just coast on their past accomplishments.

Well, what did you think of Semi-Pro?

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Bibble March 4, 2008 at 7:35 am

Unless you think stereotyping working class cities and people is funny, you won’t like Semi- Pro. Will Ferrell, ABA basketball, the 70s, humor, all take a back seat to the real story line and exhausting punch-line: people from blue-collar backgrounds with ambitions and aspirations beyond the world they are suppose to know are foolish idiots for thinking their hopes and dreams are tenable.

It’s so bad, you can’t help wondering how and why this movie got green-lighted. It’s almost as if Hollywood studio execs got together after Michael Moore’s famous Oscar acceptance speech to draw straws to determine which studio would sacrifice its reputation in order to undermine and discredit Moore’s upbringing and world-view once and for all. Then it was simply a matter of employing the most sinister and subversive weapon in their arsenal: frat- boy comedy aimed at 18- to 35-year old suburban white males.

It’s not like we’re ever going to see an action-packed historical epic about the Flint Sit-Down Strikes coming out of Hollywood. No no. Can’t have working class pride getting in the way of the upper crust’s efforts to justify their false superiority and the manner in which they treat the people who actually do the work that generates the wealth that butters their bread.

For all intents and purposes, everyone who worked on Semi-Pro is a Semi-Scab.

2 Steve March 20, 2008 at 1:29 am

Wow, this is a comedy people. It wasn’t my favorite of all time, but it was still entertaining and made me (and most of the rest of the theatre) laugh. Yea, it wasn’t as good as Old School or Anchorman, but trying to say that they are making fun of the blue collar worker is ridiculous. There’s no way they were thinking that deep, I think the joke was more that they are called the Tropics, but play in Detroit.

3 Jason of New Movie Friday March 23, 2008 at 8:17 pm

Steve, I would disagree with you calling this a comedy, as comedies are funny and this was not. Maybe, I should have seen it at your theater, because practically nobody was doing much laughing at the theater I saw it in. On the other hand, I do agree that Bibble is way over-thinking things.

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