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Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby


Stars: Will Ferrell, Amy Adams, Sacha Baron Cohen

Director: Adam McKay

Ferrell returns to his comic roots, as a racing driver who loses his nerve after being out-manoeuvred by a French rival (Baron Cohen, taking a break from Borat and Ali G).

It takes his errant father (Gary Cole) and a friendly cougar to get Ricky Bobby back on track.

Supremely daft, and borderline offensive, the film has lots of funny ideas, but, thanks to Adam McKay's klutzy direction, not many of them actually make you laugh.

Adams, John C Reilly, Michael Clarke Duncan, Leslie Bibb and others pitch in with a will, though, and there are one or two priceless lines. 'How many more times,' asks an aggrieved wife, 'are you going to toss me the radio in the bathtub?.' Or: 'What can I get her? She's 88!' 'Get her a coffin.'

On this form, by the way, Baron Cohen would have made a better Clouseau than Steve Martin.

David Quinlan

USA 2006. UK Distributor: Sony/Columbia. Colour by De Luxe.
108 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 12A.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 0, Swearing 1.

Review date: 12 Sep 2006