Set in a North Caroline district, long-time Congressman Cam Brady (Will Ferrell) has to defend his seat against a plot to unseat him by evil CEOs and new-comer Marty Huggins (Zach Galifianakis).
The plot to unseat him unfolds as Huggins is picked for his innocence, really. He just doesn’t know politics and comes off as an in-closet gay man stuck with wife and kids who want to believe in the American dream. He truly believes he can do some good for the people of his district.
Ferrell’s character is a slick politician who has risen to power unopposed and has stayed there doing nothing for the good of the people. In true Ferrell fashion, he plays Cam Brady to the hilt, making him larger than life with wide-eyed stupidity.
Pitted against Galifianakis’ Huggins passion for the people and do-gooding, Ferrell’s Cam Brady takes the role of political villain to new levels of funny.
However, as the film unfolds and the campaign gets dirty, Marty Huggins must make sacrifices to his personal agenda in order to continue. Enter Tim Wattley (Dylan McDermott), a super-cool Bond kind of guy that becomes an advisor and campaign manager to Marty.
Wattley changes everything about how Marty looks: his house, his image in the community, his wife and kids’ hairstyles, even the kind of dogs he has (pugs are from China and not allowed).
Brady jumps on the wagon of change and uses everything he has to discredit his opponent, until the two comes to blows, a baby gets punched (funniest scene in the movie), and Marty’s marriage begins to unravel (with a little help from Brady and a slipped home sex video).
I watched this movie during the Presidential campaign and it was the perfect timing. These things do go on: public image is very important, so important that the lives of those running become a lie. Nothing like exaggerated comedy to bring the reality of our lives to light.
But you don’t have to be involved in the dregs of an actual campaign to enjoy and appreciate this movie. The flow of comedy is non-stop, and it doesn’t drag. Ferrell is at the top of his comedic game here (think Anchorman running for Congress) and won’t disappoint.
Much of the comedy is added to by the wives: Katherine LaNasa plays Rose Brady, an overly ambitious person that is probably worse than Cam, and Sarah Baker plays Mitzi Huggins, whose wide-eyed innocence is a perfect match for Marty’s old world ideals.
We as the audience buy into the stupidity of the candidates. We also see that the voters are just as dumb. Part of the fun is seeing ourselves in this movie. One of my favorite scenes was the old man voter yelling at Marty that he wouldn’t vote for him because his dogs were from China (Chinese pugs).
Highly recommended for a laughing good time, The Campaign delivers on what it promises: laughs and lots of them.
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