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|Index||115 reviews in total|
I liked this movie. Sometimes a 'simple' movie can be colourful enough,
and entertaining enough, without having to be great or artsy. 'Kicking
and Screaming' was very formulaic. I actually found myself predicting
each step and outcome as the plot unfolded--- the adult abused child,
his dad, and his son, and the three generations colliding. The re-play
of the overbearing father thing, the adult man vowing to never be like
his father, but then getting accidentally caught up in the same dynamic
himself. then the sports movie redemption, etc., etc.
It sounds like a cliché, and it is--- but, oddly, I found myself more surprised than annoyed as each cliché denouement surfaced. I kept thinking, as the cliché loomed--- 'Nahhhh... they wouldn't do that. There must be some slick tricky twist coming up.' Nope. No twists, no tricks--- all the clichés play through exactly like you expected them to. But there was a certain courage and honesty about that, which I greatly admired. They had a simple, straight-forward, no-nonsense formula story, which they played out exactly as that. It was very honest.
Robert Duvall--- always great. Will Ferrell, always funny. Mike Ditka, as an actor--- he's a great football coach.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Will Ferrell has had a pretty decent film career after leaving Saturday Night Live much better than some of his contemporaries. His first effort, "Old School," was hilarious and was followed up by "Elf," which was even funnier. Later, he made "Anchorman" and most recently had the best role in Woody Allen's uneven "Melinda & Melinda." Now it's back to family comedy with the tale of a frustrated, milktoast father, Phil Weston (Ferrell), the owner of a vitamin store, who decides to coach a soccer team so his son can get in some playing time. Ironically, his son, Sam, was dumped from his grandfather Buck's (Robert Duval) squad, the champion Gladiators. Utilizing his father's worst enemy (and neighbor), former Chicago Bears coach Mike Ditka as his assistant, as well as two extremely talented Italian players (Francesco Liotti and Alessandro Ruggiero), Phil's Tigers go on a "Bad News Bears"-type winning streak. Of course, this is a family film, so when the gentle Phil goes crazy with the intense competition (and his new found addiction to coffee), he has to humble himself before his team and his son and finally do the right thing when the Tigers meet the Gladiator's for the title. Ferrell excels playing the goofy, sensitive man-child, who finds himself becoming like his father, a sporting goods mogul. Sure, there are the typical over-the-top SNL-like pratfalls (he gets stomped by Buck in a violent tether ball game, beaten up by a group of kids, spills scalding hot coffee on himself, etc.), but the message is sweet, the children cute and the 90 minutes, for the most part, very entertaining.
Kicking and Screaming was decent. Will Ferrel plays the son of a dad
who WILL NOT lose to ANYONE (Robert Duvall). He takes over coaching his
son's Little League soccer team and goes nuts trying to win at all
Kicking & Screaming seemed like it wanted to be the Anchorman of kid's movies, but it just lost me. There were some really funny parts, one involving the team needing to help out at the Italian kids family butcher shop, but overall, it just tried to hard to be a quirky movie that adults and kids would enjoy.
All in all, not Will Ferrel's best movie, but definitely not horrible. A good saterday night rental.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
'Kicking & Screaming' is pretty much a typical football comedy about an underdog team that wins in the end. Nothing new here but the reason why I watched it and enjoyed it was because of the cast. Will Ferrell is fun to watch and a laidback Robert Duvall gives a funny relaxed performance as the jerk dad with a comic touch. The beautiful Kate Walsh plays the typical wife and mom and is pretty much there for star value and eye candy. I also enjoyed the scenes with the kids. The Byong Sun character was particularly funny. The film does occasionally derail as Ferrell's Phil gets hooked on coffee and turns into a maniac coach but then again, it made me laugh. Overall this isn't exactly a great film and it has nothing new to offer but it's good time pass as it draws some laughter. Perhaps that was director Jesse Dylan's intention.
If you're a parent with kids in AYSO soccer, or a kid that plays(ed) the game, then you'll love this mindless, uplifting comedy about a coach going to the extreme to help his Tigers soccer team win. If you expect nothing more than that, then you'll enjoy yourself and have fun with this movie. The kids' soccer play has some real tricks, many of which our own kids tried during the next Saturday game! Kudos especially to Robert Duvall and Mike Ditka who really played their parts well and added a lot of variety to the movie so that it is not completely saturated with Will Ferrell (who also balanced his father/son roles well). A great family flick enjoyed by all, even the grandparents :)
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
If you rent and watch the Bad News Bears then watch this movie it will
pretty obvious the movie copied it almost completely. Several key
points in both movies..
1.In Bad News Bears a ex washed up baseball player coaches a very bad little league baseball team, in Kicking and Screaming Will Farrel plays a man who wasn't good at sports much to the letdown of his father decides to take over a junior soccer team.
2.In Bad News Bears Buttermaker lets the team play as they want till he see's how bad they are and decides to recruit some good players to help them win, Phil a nice guy lets them play as they can, seeing how disappointed his son is in not winning, lets Mike Dikta talk him into recruiting two good soccer playing Italian kids so they can win.
3.Buttermaker starts to get very competitive and instead of letting everyone have fun and play, gives his two ringers most of the playtime and the other kids get left out, Phil makes a bet with his dad, gets very competitive and puts everything on his two ringers and the other kids get left out.
4.Buttermaker see's the error of his ways benches his two ringers and lets the kids play,Phil see's the error of his ways and benches his two ringers and lets the other kids play.
Basically take out baseball in the Bad News Bears, insert soccer and make a few changes and you have Kicking and Screaming, most movies and TV shows copy each other in Hollywood, shame when they do it as blatantly as Kicking and Screaming does, watch the original Bad News Bears a much better movie.
It's strange how people look at Will Farrell movies & think Will is the
funny guy. Will is sometimes a weird guy (in fact in this soccer movie,
he is a weird coach). But in most movies, Wills best moments are making
others seem funny when they play off of him.
In this movie where the Bad News Bears do soccer in a way, Will Ferrell makes Mike Ditka look good. He makes Robert Duvall look good. He even makes the kids look good. Will is just pretty much himself, weird and a little out of touch with reality. Make that a whole lot out of touch with reality.
Still, the support he gets in this movie is priceless. The concept of the team arriving late at a soccer game in a Butcher truck all wearing bloody aprons is inspired. Some of the other things are creative & cute too. The films end is predictable, but a little different. Overall, it is entertaining for a young audience.
Mike Ditka should find some more movie work. He is pretty good in this, & is missed when he leaves the film for a while.
After years of dealing with his father's insanely competitive nature,
Phil Weston (Will Ferrell) finally gets the chance to meet up to his
father's lofty expectations. He starts coaching a kids' soccer team,
but as they get closer to the championships, he finds himself turning
into his manic father.
The premise isn't exactly new and a movie like this one tends to be on the predictable side. However, sport comedies can be enjoyable and fun so I was expecting a fun little movie from Kicking and Screaming. The film turned out to be mediocre though. It offered a few funny moments but the script is kind of weak and Ferrell isn't given a lot to work with. Screenwriters Leo Benvenuti and Steve Rudnick offer a rather lame script filled with a bunch of clichés and it brings the film down. They seem to be stealing from the Bad News Bears and Little Giants. However, Kicking and Screaming still has a few original ideas and it is a harmless movie.
The acting is okay, nothing special. Will Ferrell gives an okay performance as Phil. Sometimes he manages to be really funny while other times he tries way too hard. Surprisingly, Mike Ditka steals the film from Ferrell and he gives a good performance. His performance isn't going to light the world on fire but at least he does a better job than Duvall. Robert Duvall gives a bad and dull performance as Phil's dad. Comedy is not his element and he should avoid doing it in the future. The funniest kid in the film is Elliot Cho who played Byong Sun. The most annoying kid in the film is Steven Anthony Lawrence since he isn't funny at all. I don't understand what casting directors see in him since he's just annoying and not funny.
Jess Dylan directs and he does an okay job. He manages to come up with a few funny scenes and he keeps the film very simple and safe. While the movie did have it's funny moments, it also had a few dull scenes that weren't all that necessary. The movie is also kind of bland and really predictable. It was also kind of a lazy movie since the filmmakers didn't really try anything new. The good thing is that the movie is only 95 minutes long so at least it wasn't too much of a pain to sit through. Still, Kicking and Screaming is only a mediocre family film and it's kind of a one joke comedy that gets old after awhile. In the end, Kicking and Screaming isn't worth the full ticket price but it might make for a decent rental. Rating 6/10
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Kicking & Screaming tells the story of a loving father and,Phil Weston,
(Will Ferrell) and the local children's soccer league. His son, Sam,
(Dylan McLaughlin) played on the team coached by Phil's father, Buck,
(Robert Duvall) until he was suddenly traded to the Tigers. Put simply,
Ferrell is awesome. At First Phil Weston is an insecure everyman who
has grown up in the shadow of his father, a and vicious coach of the
Gladiators Little League Soccer team.
The directing was decent, but also the acting was respectable. Will Ferrell (Old School), is hilarious. He is seemingly comfortable with films for all audiences such as Elf and the soon-to-come Bewitched. Robert Duvall (Secondhand Lions) plays an excellent role as an overbearing and competitive father. Also, the appearance from Mike Ditka, tight end in the NFL from 1961 to 1972 and coach of the Chicago Bears from 1982 to 1992, is a great accentuating ingredient to this film.
Rated PG and has thematic elements, language and some crude humor. The humor can be understood by younger pre-teens, but there is a lot of wittiness that pertains specifically towards adolescents and older.
Out of all the talented people who were on 'Saturday Night Live' in the
last fifteen years, Will Ferrell is by far my favorite. He's such a
charismatic, energetic and hilarious performer. He truly is a comic
genius. He's also one of the most successful SNL alumni of all time.
For most of the cast members, after they leave 'Saturday Night Live'
their careers go down the toilets. But not Will Ferrell, he only
improved his career after his goodbye to SNL, with great comedies like
Old School, Anchorman, and even, Elf. Whenever you go see a Will
Ferrell film you have the strong expectation of it being really good.
Well, Ferell's latest effort, 'Kicking and Screaming', is a
disappointment of epic proportions. But that isn't his fault. Poor Mr.
Ferrell tries as hard as he can to lift this dud off the ground, but he
just isn't able to because of the movie's beyond lame screenplay. Yes,
those thinking 'Kicking and Screaming', would be the next great Will
Ferrell movie are sadly mistaking. I was one of those people, and
that's why I left the theater so incredibly disappointed.
The movie is a little league soccer flick, and it circles around the all-too-familiar plot of the dipstick son trying to live up to his non-supportive father. The dipstick is Will Ferrell's character, Phil Weston. He owns a vitamin store, and is always trying to gain the respect of his father, Buck Weston (played by Academy Award Winner Robert Duvall), who owns a chain of sporting good stores and viciously coaches a little league soccer team, which Phil's son is a part of. One day, Buck trades Phil's son to another team because he isn't a good player. This infuriates Phil, and eventually has him coach the team his son has been traded to, to show daddy he's not a screw-up. The movie pretty much follows the competition of the two father-son coaches. Whose team will win the championship? By the end of the movie, you really don't care anymore, and you're looking at your watch frantically to see how much of this waste of film is left.
It isn't so much 'Kicking and Screaming' is a horrible movie, it's just not a good one by any stretch of the imagination. The biggest problem with the film is the screenplay -- it is absolutely dreadful (to quote Simon Cowell to one of the untalented hack wannabe singers on 'American Idol'). It's very amateurish, and it doesn't go places it should to be funny. It's very bland and so conventional it will have you yawning after the 30-minute mark. Although it succeeds being funny sometimes, for the most part it fails miserably at earning laughs. Whoever wrote this trashy script should be banned from the film industry, because it is just awful. The movie is really saved by Will Ferrell, who really puts forth an effort to make the most of his part, but an actor in a film is only as good as the film's screenplay. Ferrell achieves hilarity in some scenes, but most of his lines are embarrassingly stupid and unoriginal. Mike Ditka is actually pretty good playing himself, and Robert Duvall serves as an example of a waste of good talent in this childish sap fest.
In conclusion, 'Kicking and Screaming' is something you should avoid. If you really love Will Ferrell, it just may be worth watching to see Ferrell break out in a violent rage brought on by too much coffee, but for the lot of us it is just plain old cinematic crap. Grade: C- (screened at AMC Deer Valley 30, Phoenix, Arizona, 5/13/05)
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