Posted August 25, 2012 by Mikael Angelo Francisco in Movies/TV

MOVIE REVIEW: The Campaign

Note: This review is spoiler-free, unless you count screencaps and information from trailers as “spoilers”.

Warner Brothers Pictures
Philippine Release: August 22, 2012
Rated R-13
85 minutes

Check out the trailer here!

Politicians – we hate the crazy and downright shameless things they do with a passion, and yet we can’t live without them.

No, I don’t mean that they’re absolutely essential to our existence, and neither am I implying that deep inside, we DO adore the congressman whose stupid smiling face occupies about two-thirds of a pamphlet advertising free medical treatment for children (in size 8 font, no less), or that we actually enjoy looking at poorly-edited pictures of blandly-drawn superhero bodies with famous political faces hastily slapped on top of them. What I mean is, it’s impossible to live without them, because these guys are damn near impossible to avoid. Hell, I can’t even walk two blocks around my neighborhood without getting forcefully reminded that I can always count on the local councilor who took the Green Lantern logo and put a freaking HEART inside it.

Photobucket“That’s the NINETEENTH poster I’ve seen today. Where do these people even GET the money to- oh wait, nevermind.”

Needless to say, when I first heard about The Campaign, I didn’t have any high expectations for it. I mean, sure, Anchorman and Blades of Glory were funny, and I totally loved The Hangover and The Hangover 2, but I wasn’t really sure about just how well Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis would work together. Besides, it’s a movie about politicians; it’s not like I don’t already get enough of that crap on a daily basis.

The Campaign is your typical Will Ferrell comedy flick with a heavy dose of political satire. For some reason, though, I found most of the jokes here to be unfunny and rather flat. I laughed through Anchorman, and so I’m wondering whether my nonchalance about this film means that my sense of humor has finally matured (it hasn’t) or that there was a problem with the writing (most likely). The people seated in the first three rows of the cinema were practically roaring their guts out though; were we seeing a different movie? Am I a political prude, a comedy casual, or even a (gasp!) humorless hooligan for not finding nip slips and excessive cursing funny? Am I really the same person who thoroughly enjoyed American Reunion, or was I secretly replaced with a clone lacking a funny bone prior to seeing this film?

Photobucket“This is Cam Brady, and I disapprove of this review. RON BURGUNDY PUNCH!”

The ending was also a bit off. It’s too predictable, too typical-Hollywood-movie-ending, if you get what I mean. Seriously, come on. This is a movie that makes fun of politics and calls it out for being the crazy circus that it is; I’m pretty sure that things don’t get resolved in a neat little bow as easily in real life as they did here. There are some things to appreciate about it, though. It’s actually quite intelligently-written for a comedy flick. Also, to its credit, it tries to achieve a little variety by showing the campaign advertisements for the candidates, as well as using the first-person camera POV at one point in the film.

There’s really not much to say about this film, to be honest. If you’re a fan of Will Ferrell or Zach Galifianakis, you’ll probably enjoy this film. Otherwise, manage your expectations.

Thanks to Warner Bros. Philippines for the invites to the special screening of The Campaign!

Mikael Angelo Francisco