"The Other Guys" is the latest collaboration of Will Ferrell and Adam McKay, who created other recent comedy classics such as Talledega Nights and Anchorman. This movie has a great combination of insider police humor and current hot button issues in New York City, namely white collar crime. It crosses a few genres, equal parts buddy cop movie, with a comedic take on action flicks, as well as investigations of corporate corruption. It is in the same vein as Kevin Smith's "Copout" which was also released in 2010 and follows the exploits of eccentric cops battling crime in New York.
McKay directed and cowrote this movie, which really has some solid and intricate writing, which is counterbalanced by the antics of Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg's characters, Terry Hoight and Allan Gamble. The opening scene is an obvious ribbing of cliche driven cop action flicks, played to perfection by the team of Samuel L. Jackson and The Rock, whose fate shows a touch of reality and provides a counterpoint to the duo of Ferrell and Wahlberg, whose identity is created as being known only for their mediocrity and incompetence, hence they are "the other guys." Ferrell is an accountant desk cop, who is goaded into discharging his weapon in a "desk pop" in order to fit in with his coworkers. Even though he seems like the "office geek," his development throughout the movie shows a hilariously dark past and an instant magnestism with women, which baffles Wahlberg's character, dubbed the "Yankee Clipper," an action hungry self proclaimed "peacock", who is in the doghouse for accidentaly shooting a baseball player while on a ballpark security detail. They are relagated to being the butt of every joke from their fellow officers, yet when they stumble upon the malfeasance of a multi national coroporation, the odd couple take on the treachery of Wall Street's dark side. Given that this movie was filmed in 2009, just a year after the stock market crash and during the bailout controversy, McKay proves to be as socially conscious as he is hilarious.
There is quite a cast in this movie, aside from the great preformance of Ferrell and Wahlberg. Eva Mendes plays Ferrell's wife, who dumbfounds Wahlberg as to how Ferrell could marry a woman of her stature. Michael Keaton is the duo's captain, who trys to be lenient despite their bumbling, as he works a demeaning side job at Bed, Bath and Beyond to finance his son's NYU education, where he allegedly "explores his bi-sexuality and DJing skills." Rob Riggle, of Daily show fame (as well as the tazer cop in "The Hangover") teams up with Daymon Wayans to replace the recently fallen Jackson and Rock as the top dogs, who become the new self promoting glory hounds of the NYC media. Steve Coogan plays Ershon, the bunko businessman who's scams range from Nigeria to Chechnya, with a penchant for bribing with pairs of tickets to the Jersey Boys and Mama Mia and Ray Stevenson rounds out the cast as the neo-conservative security expert who plays the foil to the heroic other guys. The undercover informant at the end also hints at a new case "the other guys" have a lead on; a sequel is likely in the offing.