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Movie of the Day – Casa De Mi Padre

Posted on the 28 June 2013 by Plotdevice39 @PlotDevices

You know I think Will Ferrell has it fairly easy in getting comedy movies made.  He just has to come up with a premise, sports or generally weird in concept, and then basically say “and I am the star”.  I have to believe that this is the only reason why Will Ferrell got Casa de mi Padre made, it is a concept film that parodies/pay homage to Spanish Soap Operas or Telenovelas, while having Will Ferrell speak in Spanish the entire time.  You know what, I love me some telenovelas and I was pretty interested in seeing what a full blown, comedic concept like will pan out to be.

Casa 1b

Armando Alvarez (Will Ferrell) has lived and worked on his father’s ranch in Mexico his entire life. As the ranch encounters financial difficulties, Armando’s younger brother Raul (Diego Luna) shows up with his new fiancée, Sonia (Genesis Rodriguez). It seems that Raul’s success as an international businessman means the ranch’s troubles are over as he pledges to settle all debts his father has incurred. But when Armando falls for Sonia, and Raul’s business dealings turn out to be less than legit, all hell breaks loose as they find themselves in a war with Mexico’s most feared drug lord, the mighty Onza (Gael Garcia Bernal). — (C) Pantelion Films

I remember growing up and watching these Spanish soap opera at my respective grandparents house.  Telemundo and Univision were on constantly and while my grasp of the language was limited, there was still something captivating about watching these over dramatic soap operas.  It might have been because the Latin women were muy caliente, but it was the gorgeous overacting in a lot of the shows.  From absurd inflections of dialog that seemed over the top, to cat fights and outbursts of emotion, everything about telenovelas are just something to behold.  Funny, exciting and interesting to watch, I think they hit more comically in an unintentional way than anything else.  I certainly won’t forget that time in my life and I guess that is why I ended up liking this a lot more than most people.

Casa 1a

It’s a concept that is incredibly novel, more so to the point it feels like a Funny or Die skit that goes on and on.  Those were some of the complaints and I can sympathize with that assessment.  Having to wade through the idea of watching a tongue in cheek parody of Spanish soap operas for longer than like 30 minutes might be a long stretch to go through.  For me I enjoy the concept and the comedy that is derived from the material they are parodying.  Ferrell does his best with Spanish, making just these very English tinged Spanish speaking seem a bit more comical than it should.  The jokes are made perfectly in the realm of telenovelas which I think you have to have watched those in order to get some of the jokes or situational references.

The concept of a Spanish speaking Will Ferrell in a completely Spanish language film is a great idea, hell one that I really enjoyed despite the length.  It does work against you, but I applaud the interesting attempt at doing something a bit weird and different.  The comedy might get a bit lost in translation to some viewers, but if you grew up watching the soap operas or even familiar with them, you will end up enjoying something different from Ferrell.

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