The Campaign (2012) Poster

(2012)

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8/10
Ribald, funny, merciless fun at the expense of politicians and politics
steven-leibson4 September 2012
Warning: Spoilers
A very, very funny movie that's very, very coarse. If you are not amused by jokes about sex, body parts and bodily functions, effeminate men, scantily-clad women, politics, and politicians then this isn't your movie. If you like that sort of thing, then you need to see this movie now. Light, fluffy entertainment. No thinking required (or desired). Good guys win. Bad guys either lose or are redeemed. I run hot and cold on Will Farrel movies. This one's a keeper for him but the real star of this movie is Zach Galifianakis who seems to replicate Jack Black's character in "Bernie" but with a completely different take. This movie will make you feel better about what's coming to American politics in the next three months.
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7/10
Good satire of politics.
mm-3923 August 2012
Warning: Spoilers
The Campaign is a good satire of politics. The Campaign shows why the public has lost faith in the USA political process. The satire of the movie shows how candidates do not answer questions, but skirt issues and use generic themes like freedom etc. The Campaign shows there is no discussion of the issues and the two candidates deteriorate the campaign into the Springer show. One has sex with the other's wife as a campaign ad. The Campaign shows that the special interests run both parties, which is the reason why there is no real debate, and interest in what is good for the community. The film is funny but has some low ball comedy on Religion, sex, and people. I give The Campaign a seven out of ten.
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8/10
A simple comedy that does its job.
Gordon Hendry19 August 2012
After reading many reviews, i have to agree that this is a technically a bad film. The humor in this movie is very raw and crude (which doesn't bother me), and it has a very simple storyline. I was ready to give this movie a rating of a 5 or below until i stopped looking into the movie too much, and saw it for what it is. The purpose of a comedy is to make people laugh, and that is exactly what myself and the rest of the theater did for the majority of the movie. The movie is so relevant as well with the upcoming presidential elections, and i feel this movie helps take the edge of the brutality of the current Obama vs. Romney.

If you just want to see a simple movie that will make you laugh without having to think about the plot, then see the movie.
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6/10
Its ironically authentic lampooning of real politics is the funniest part of all.
GoneWithTheTwins9 August 2012
The Campaign offers many hilarious moments in the vein of humor that one has come to expect from its creators. Will Ferrell is entertaining as always with his "presidential" accent and foul-mouthed quips. Zach Galifianakis also presents quite a character, often outshining his co-star with his supremely bizarre eccentricities. But underneath the layer of laughs is a rather forgettable story. It's undoubtedly a great basis for the two comedy giants to clash, but the plot neither furthers our interest in its leads nor their plight. Much of the time it feels as if we lose no matter who wins. Perhaps its ironically authentic lampooning of real politics is the funniest part of all.

North Carolina congressman Cam Brady (Will Ferrell) has fallen into a leisurely routine of false promises and general negligence in his duties as the longtime unopposed representative. But after an obscene phone call to the wrong person finds Brady's approval rating drastically down, corporate bigwigs Glenn (John Lithgow) and Wade Motch (Dan Aykroyd), decide to replace him with someone they can easily control for their own devious schemes. Their candidate is mild-mannered Marty Huggins (Zach Galifianakis), a tourism enthusiast with naïve ideas of bettering his hometown. When Huggins announces his candidacy, and the stunned Brady quickly introduces him to the sinister world of politics, the battlefield is set for copious smear campaigns, name tarnishing and disgraceful machinations to destroy each other's reputations. But as the debates get dirtier and the backstabbing more barbaric, both candidates begin to question how far they'll go to win – and what they're willing to lose.

The Campaign has an amusing premise. It examines the corruption, general crookedness, and underhanded big business influences behind politics, employing a wildly satirical viewpoint coupled with abrasive language and hysterical visual gags. "When you've got the money, nothing's unpredictable," insists Glenn Motch, defining his wealthy persuasions over chancy voters. An underdog candidate is uprooted from unremarkableness to be subjected to an immoderate transformation, itself an entertaining feat, for the sake of molding a puppet for exploitive moneymen. And he is to combat a long unopposed, professional politician, who has grown too accustomed to the post without having to put effort toward purpose or even basic responsibility. The two face off in riotous slander, invidious advertising strategies, backbiting, and baby punching. And their warfare gets steadily more caustic as election day looms. But that's it – the setup is the story, and there's nothing more meaningful beyond that.

The tired theme of "do the right thing" rears its head, but it never serves to stress originality or the means for further mockeries of recognizable, past political blunders. The My Fair Lady shtick is catchy, Galifianakis and Ferrell are equally witty in their roles (their ridiculousness is amplified by an anticipated collaboration), while goofy voices (think one part Jiminy Glick and one part Stuart Smalley for Zach, with Will blending his Saturday Night Live presidential impressions), dirty jokes, and slapstick weigh in proportionally for humor. The Campaign also points the finger at the idiotic everyman who misinterprets intent and blindly falls for thinly stretched defamation attempts. But what does it all lead to? A few grand laughs and lovable imbeciles don't amount to a story – it's essentially a promising foundation for comedy that forgets to tell a full-bodied, meaningful tale of political conversion and redemption.

  • The Massie Twins
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7/10
An entertaining, but not totally satisfactory, political satire
Argemaluco1 November 2012
The election period in the United States has traditionally been a fountain of humorous material exploited to the maximum by the comedians, most of them on TV, but also in cinema, as we can see this year in the film The Campaign, directed by Jay Roach, whose filmography includes some excellent comedies (the Austin Powers trilogy)...and other deeply irritating ones (Meet the Fockers, Dinner for Schmucks). I would also like to point out that The Campaign isn't Roach's first incursion into the political field, because he also made the TV movies Recount and Game Change, which both made a brilliant work in portraying the pressures and vices from a presidential campaign from a serious and (more or less) impartial point of view. Could The Campaign achieve the same but in a humorous context? I don't think so, but I can't deny I found the film entertaining nevertheless.

I think there's an excellent political satire hidden in some place of The Campaign. The general premise of an inept lout who is transformed into a charismatic candidate manipulated by the economical elite is very interesting; and even though it's not completely original, I think it's appropriate to occasionally remember it in order to recognize it whenever we find it in the real world (something which undoubtedly happens with a sad frequency). However, the few intelligence from the screenplay is diluted by the coarse and vulgar humor employed as vehicle of the message. I have to admit I laughed in various occasions (specially during the "Our Father" scene), and I definitely found some ingenuity in the creation of absurd but credible situations (at least in the filthy context of contemporary politics)...however, for every scene that works, there's five or six which only provoke whining, specially due to the tendency the actors show to "play the fool". I think this is a very subjective point in any comedy; but in my personal taste, the humor always works better when the actors take their roles seriously and let the comedy to naturally flow from their attitudes and reactions. When they try to force the laughs with a physical or verbal affectation, they lose spontaneity and, specially, destruct the reality of the characters in order to transform them into caricatures.

And besides of that, I found the screenplay of The Campaign too innocent and predictable, taking a safe route until leading to a happy ending. So, I guess that not all the political satires can be as subtle and effective as Wag the Dog or In the Loop; however, I can give a moderate recommendation to The Campaign as an entertaining comedy, despite not being very memorable.
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6/10
The Campaign: A decent review to a decent movie.
Modest953 September 2012
Let me start off by saying that I love Will Ferrell and Zack Galifianakis. I love most of the films they starred in. So upon hearing that these two comedic heavyweights will be starring in the same movie together, you could imagine my excitement. Did it meet my expectations? Sort of. This comedy staring these two actors was enjoyable and had plenty of laughs but after viewing, I realized how it could have been much better.

Basically, Democratic playboy Cam Brady has to verse off against republican every-man Marty Huggins after Marty enters the race against the long-term congressmen Cam at the last minute. This of course leads to hilarious incidents that occur in both parties.

The basic plot line is really effective since the film is not biased and allows for making fun of both parties, which I very much appreciate. Unfortunately, the real issues lie in the acting and writing. Ferrell And Galifianakis really don't get the chance to spread there "wings" in this film. Both have the potential to be hilarious but they never get the chance. Jason Sudeiki's seems very unused as Cam Brady's Assistant Mitch. Again, he does not get the chance to shine in this film. I love John Lithgow and Dan Aykroyd but there roles in this film are very unnecessary. They are not really funny or entertaining to watch. This is unfortunate. Jay Roach really tried to make a good film, but I think he picked the wrong actors for this film. He shines in romantic comedies like Meet the Parents but he is trying to hard to make a Will Farrell film. It would have been much better with Adam McKay.

It's not all bad though. The scenes that are funny, are hilarious and make will make anyone with a sense of humor laugh. The film's pacing is very good and the chemistry between Farrell And Galifianakis is just perfect. In the end, if you go in the theater with an open mind and a sense of humor, you will enjoy it. Just don't expect another Step Brothers or Hangover.
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9/10
Very Funny and a Perfect Match,
FilmBuff19944 August 2013
The Campaign is a hilarious movie with a very clever storyline and a very talented and comedic cast that do a terrific job.When I first heard that Will Ferrell and Zach Galifanakis did a movie together,I had to see it,but then I heard it was disappointing so I delayed seeing.I decided to rent it,and I didn't see what the problem was,I though the movie was hilarious,there was a few misses but very few,and similar to Step Brothers and the Hangover,it has so much lines that are very quotable,also the two actors worked really well together.I really enjoyed Dylan McDermott,Sarah Baker,Dan Aykroyd and John Lithgow,the casting for each character was all very well suited.If your a fan of both Will Ferrell and Zach Galifanakis comedies you will definitely love the Campaign.

Long running congressman Cam Brady (Will Ferrell) finally gets some competition from Marty Huggins (Zach Galifanakis),a man who may take over his career.They start a serious campaign against each other.
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6/10
The Campaign...2.5 out of 4 Skittles
FilmStallion6 September 2012
t seems like it should be easy to make a funny movie about the state of our political climate….rich, greedy, corrupt people spending millions of dollars to make television ads that spread blatant lies to the uninformed voting public, but The Campaign ends up feeling a bit underwhelming of what could have been.

Screenwriters Chris Henchy & Shawn Harwell only scratched the surface of the real life hilarity of the current political landscape. All they had to do was turn on any TV news channel and take note of the circus that current politics have become…from former governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to Weiner-Gate to…well…Sarah Palin, but for Chris Henchy, the writer of past stinkers Land of the Lost and The Other Guys, I guess that is what should be expected.

Will Ferrell (Step Brothers, Anchorman) and Zach Galifianakis (The Hangover, Due Date) make a fine comedic duo, but their one-note characters leave these candidates without much to say. Ferrell ends up doing a less funny version of his George W. Bush impersonation. His iconic character was a slam-dunk on short SNL skits, but runs thin in a feature film.

The Campaign definitely provides its share of laughs that keep this film above average, but doesn't live up to other classic films produced by Ferrell and Adam McKay's Gary Sanchez production company…I.E. Step Brothers, Anchorman, Talladega Nights. The Campaign may end up being one of the most profitable comedies of the 2012 blockbuster season, but compared against the other duds Hollywood barfed out this summer (The Watch, That's My Boy, The Dictator) that isn't saying too much.

For more quick reviews check out www.FilmStallion.com
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7/10
The Campaign (2012) - He Just Punched a Baby!
nickmesafilms24 August 2012
Two comedic favorites Will Ferrell and Zach Galifanakis finally share the screen together in "The Campaign". Although being casted in their usual and cliché roles; Ferrell as a competitive mindless idiot that's considered the best at everything, and Galifanakis as a weird, but likable sweater vest-wearing dork; these two still share a decent chemistry in a movie that's although not a perfect comedy as you'd expect it to be, it's still a pretty decent comedy, that consistently hits the funny bone, sometimes in the right places. Ferrell plays Cam Brady, a presidential candidate that has never lost a single campaign in his life, and is now running for the fifth term. But then, out of the blue, to actually give Brady some competition, Galifanakis' Marty Huggins is volunteered to run for Congress. It then leads into one of the deadliest campaigns ever seen on the face of the earth. Although "The Campaign" doesn't reach the level of complete comedic gold, director Jay Roach was able to bring in some consistent funny moments that are more worthy of a giggle, rather than "bursting to tears" kind of laughs. I was really expecting more from Will Ferrell, who seems to be tiring in his cliché role, and I felt that it was really hard to feel sympathy for this character, because he's the only un-likable person throughout. I guess I had more sympathy for Galifanakis' character, because not only was he funny, but he was also the only person that I actually cared about. But aside from the two male leads, Jason Sudeikis, Dylan McDermott, John Lithgow, Dan Aykroyd, and Brian Cox round up the supporting cast, most of them delivering some decent enough performances. I say most of them, because Dylan McDermott's contribution as Marty's campaign manager seemed wasted in the role, and didn't really steal the scenes as everyone said he would. I honestly think that this guy wasn't really that funny. Although half of the jokes sadly fall flat, the other half is filled with one hilarious scene after the next. From the scene with Marty Huggin's family at the dinner table, to Cam accidentally punching a baby at a campaign party. This proves that there are scenes that help save this movie from being a bad one. Although at it's noticeable flaws, "The Campaign" is still a decent and pretty funny movie that has a clear perspective on what it was trying to be. "The Campaign", in my review, "laughable and enjoying, but hardly anything special".
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2/10
a ridiculous and unfunny comedy trying to disguise itself as a satire
tbmforclasstsar11 August 2012
Warning: Spoilers
There is a line, and not even a fine one, between satire and goofy comedies. Even in satirical films that have raunchy, campy, and over-exaggerated humor, the comedy is used to enhance the satire and make a stronger statement about the subject of the film. And at times it seems that The Campaign is trying its hardest to be a proper satire. But in the end, it is a conflicted and confused film with split personality disorder between political humor and a Will Ferrell comedy.

Co-Starring Ferrell (the comedian of yester-year) and Zach Galifianakis (who seemed to be the comedian of the now), The Campaign tells the ridiculous story of the congressional race in the 14th district of North Carolina between two very different politicians. Ferrell plays Cam Brady, a Congressman that has run unopposed for several years and plans on winning another easy election. But he is stunned when Marty Huggins (Galifianakis) comes out of nowhere to announce his candidacy for Congress. Huggins, the son of a rich political father, is brought on to defeat Brady by two political leaders known as the Motch Brothers (Dan Aykroyd and John Lithgow) who believe Huggins is the goat they can use to bring cheap Chinese labor to the US.

Quickly, the campaigns turn from an honest race between two men to an all out war between two politicians that will do anything they can to win. And in a film that begins with a Ross Perot quote that says "War has rules, mud wrestling has rules…politics has no rules," you can imagine the amount of ridiculous comedy two politicians played by Ferrell and Galifianakis get into.

And while I am sure there is a crowd that will find this film humorous, I rarely did. In an hour and forty minute comedy starring two big names like Ferrell and Galifianakis, I laughed maybe three times, two of which due to how bad the film was. Like I said at the beginning, there is a difference between satire and goofy…this is off the wall ridiculous.

Cam Brady may be Ferrell's worst character ever. He is everything we have seen from Ferrell before regurgitated and stuffed into a $3,000 suit. He3 is dumb, crass, and completely unoriginal and uninspired. Sure, there is humor and making a statement about how dumb our politicians are and the extremes campaigns can go to, but having Cam Brady punch a baby in the face, then a dog in the face, and then use a sex tape as a political ad is not clever or funny…it is flat out stupid. For anyone to watch it and have any moment of "Yeah, politicians really are dumb," is ridiculous, but seemingly something the writers and filmmakers were aiming at. There seems to be a necessity to make political statements about how dumb politicians are, how corrupt our government is, and the lengths everyone in politics will go to win a race, but it is within a stupid comedy that doesn't ever take itself seriously in its satire.

To read the rest of the review (IMDb form too short) visit: http://custodianfilmcritic.com/the-campaign/
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2/10
Downright unfunny.
Troy_Campbell9 August 2012
I'm not sure where to start. I'll go back to the beginning. One fine Thursday night I was settling down to watch Ted on the big screen, when on came a trailer for The Campaign. I chuckled a few times and was confident that further hilarity would ensue in the actual feature. All signs were promising. All signs were wrong, dead wrong. This crude political satire is neither witty nor biting, but most awful of all, it's downright unfunny. In what gets earmarked as 2012's biggest disappointment (so far), the potentially side-splitting combination of Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis is yawn-inducing at best, cringe-worthy at worst; neither comedian walking away with a solitary laugh. Of all people it's Dylan McDermott that gets a couple of amusing moments, his shady and ruthless campaign manager a welcome respite from the embarrassing blandness of the leads and other co-stars John Lithgow, Dan Aykroyd and Brian Cox. The campaign slogan for Galifianakis' bumbling Marty Huggins sums this film up most accurately: "It's a mess".
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7/10
A Decent Comedy! Ferrell & Galifianakis deliver Superbly!
namashi_126 October 2012
Jay Roach's 'The Campaign' is A Decent Comedy, that offers genuine laughs in the goings-on. And, Ferrell & Galifianakis deliver Superbly!

'The Campaign' Synopsis: In order to gain influence over their North Carolina district, two CEOs seize an opportunity to oust long-term congressman Cam Brady by putting up a rival candidate. Their man: naive Marty Huggins, director of the local Tourism Center.

'The Campaign' is undeniably funny, I laughed & enjoyed myself. The film serves its purpose. Chris Henchy & Shawn Harwell's Screenplay is funny & crisp. Jay Raoch's Direction is satisfactory. Cinematography & Editing are alright.

Ferrell & Galifianakis are up for vie top honors. The Comedic Veterans are hilarious in their respective parts & go head to head from start to end. Among the supporting cast, Jason Sudeikis is first-rate. Brian Cox, John Lithgow & Dan Aykroyd are excellent.

On the whole, 'The Campaign' works.
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An enjoyable comedy
Gordon-113 September 2013
This film is about a race between two congressman candidates in North Carolina.

"The Campaign" is a fun and light hearted mockery of modern American politics, but it is also surprisingly real in terms of what could possibly happen in a real election campaign. The plot is funny and really gets me laughing, but I am the most impressed by the emotional ending that conveys a victory to morality. Another thing that really stands out is the Asian maid who speaks with an amazing African and also Spanish accent.

I enjoyed watching this film!
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8/10
Excellent Parody of U.S. Politics
speedy-droid9 June 2015
Warning: Spoilers
The Campaign is one of the best comedies that I have ever seen. You definitely have to watch this movie in context, and see past the obvious, crass, junior-high-school humor. Most of the real humor is buried deep within this film. A few subtle points, just to get you started:

1) Labrador Retrievers (dogs) did NOT originate in the USA. Pugs are from China, but were bred long before China was under Communist rule.

2) The car that Cam Brady drives is made in Canada.

3) Cam Brady parts his hair to the Left... Marty Huggins parts his hair to the Right.
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2/10
Should have just walked out...
Rebecca Morgen10 August 2012
This was a wasted opportunity. Will Farrell has brought forth some great humor in movies with an added message of truth. However, this time the mark was missed. 'Politics as usual,' was a great start for a box office hit, especially in an election year, and this held all the ideas to make it happen. It could have been gut-busting hilarious, but the execution of film making was drastically short for the plot's potential and casted talent.

While there were some very good laughs, the rampant smut quickly wicked a lot of laughter from the theater. The pull to 'look away' distracted and overcame the anticipation for the next chuckle. Comedies should make us laugh, and perhaps think about the topics and subjects being mocked. It is even a useful venue for starting discussions on otherwise untouchable issues like politics, religion, sex, and divorce. The presentation of irony, sarcasm and good writing for a memorable classic were all but entirely replaced with empty, humiliating smut. The actors and makers took an easy out for a quick buck instead of delivering what movie-goers expect and deserve. If we pay them, they should deliver. Now I can't get my money or time back and I have encouraged the junk effort to continue. It's like celebrity welfare.

When we buy a ticket or product for an advertisement we view on TV, we should get what we were shown. The Compaign left viewers obviously disappointed and thirsting for the comedies we can recommend to anyone and everyone, as well as to stock the home DVD rack.
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1/10
The Continued "Dumbing" of the American Film Industry!
PekoesDad13 August 2012
This film just continues to convince me that the "dumbing" of the American film industry is alive...unfortunately! This piece of garbage was not worth the gum I chewed that I picked off the bottom of my seat! Will Ferrell is absolutely talentless. The screenwriters -- Shawn Harwell and Chris Henchy -- showed a total lack of creativity. The comedy (for the moment, please allow me to call it such) in this film was predictable, raunchy, and aimed at the lowest common denominator. Cursing, naming body parts, and achieving other such low-level attempts at getting viewers to crack a smile just isn't funny. How many times can you go for the same jokes... when they weren't funny the first time? Lastly, it amazes me that -- unless they needed money to pay their mortgages in this dreadful economy -- John Lithgow, Dylan McDermott, Wolf Blitzer, Piers Morgan, Bill Maher, Chris Matthews, Dennis Miller, Lawrence O'Donnell, Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski, Willie Geist, and Ed Schultz -- would lend their names to this "candidate" for the worst film of all-time!

I will say, however, that "THE" best part in this film was played by Karen Maruyama ("Mrs. Yao"). She was fantastically hysterical!
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7/10
A Nutshell Review: The Campaign
DICK STEEL1 September 2012
With the US Presidential Elections gaining traction and going into its final leg before the polls in November, it's probably natural that a comedy about American politics gets released into the cinemas to capitalize on election fever, as well as to lampoon the various strategies, and poke fun on the candidates who would be more than inclined to say the darnedest things that don't make too much sense, or to behave in a hypocritical manner, all of which are fodder to be made fun of.

Directed by Jay Roach, who is no stranger to those who enjoy the trilogy of Austin Powers films, The Campaign put two current funny men together, and watch them explode as they rib each other to shreds as part of the political hustings to garner more votes by discrediting the other. It's never more than just to share one's plans for the electorate when elected, or to reveal and convince them of one's programs, but to take the more interesting approach to character assassinate, and utilize the power of the media, and one's carefully built persona as perception for the voting public.

Comedy aside, this film lays down very real issues and problems with politics anywhere around the world, and that is more worrying, whether the right people are shunning serving the community, and the wrong people with the wrong motives seeking office instead, so as to further the reserves in their coffers, or that of their supporters with the tacit understanding that the interests of those who had backed one's campaign should be looked on favourably, with any meeting conducted to discuss these terms deemed never having been convened. Corporations are also seen as shady organizations when they contribute to campaign funds, and in truth with money talking these days, can make or hurt politicians chances by playing up or down their capabilities or screw ups. It's been some time seeing Dan Aykroyd and John Lithgow on screen, and here they play unscrupulous businessmen who are looking at in- sourcing and exploitation of cheap labour, selling out their state/country once they have their preferred candidate occupy office.

As you would have learnt from the trailer, The Campaign pits Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis as two politicians getting at each others throats from the get go. For the former, as Democratic incumbent Cam Brady, unopposed for the most parts of his career given walkovers, his seeking office probably had to do with the satiation of his sexual desires, with a major boo boo involving a dirty message left on someone else's answering machine doing him in. As for Galifianakos' Marty Huggins, he got plucked out of obscurity just because he happens to be the son of a well known, but retired politician, and got thrust into the limelight having sold the idea of doing his father proud, and to lend a hand doing something worthwhile for society.

So it's a fight that's filled with plenty of dirty tricks, mostly centered around character assassination from both camps in tit for tat fashion, providing ammunition for its comedic scenes. The gloves are off in a no holds barred, winner takes all competition that has absolutely no rules, with either side eager to jump on discrediting the opposition camp. And the campaign managers, played by Jason Sudeikis and Dylan McDermott who belong to the Cam Brady and Marty Huggins camps respectively, are hugely responsible for that. The last film seen with campaign managers playing a big part is in George Clooney's Ides of March, with almost the same level of seriousness and intensity seen in The Campaign, especially Dylan McDermott's Tim Wattley who has to build Marty's popularity from scratch, and create a credible candidate out of a dim wit.

For those who appreciate the other Jay Roach comedies, expect the usual toilet humour, and plenty of f-bombs creeping their way into the film. Will Ferrell is also at his element here as the politician who cannot stand losing, blessed with a trophy family, and his pairing with Galifianakis proved to be successful, especially during scenes which they share and have to go one up against the other. Galifianakis continues in his usual roles as none too bright characters having a ball of a time, and here his story arc provided for a little bit of a melodrama, which I thought was a nice touch and a break from the comedy, serving as reminder that family matters, and should take priority rather than being shelved aside for ambition. Or worse, to pretend to lead a lifestyle just because it has the consensus of the majority.

The Campaign runs at a very light 85 minutes, although it did feel a little longer than that, especially in the final few scenes that dwelled into back stories built up to provide a little bit more character motivation and common history. Still, it's entertaining, funny for the most parts, and relevant, and if we don't have much power to change the rot at the polls, the least we can do is to laugh at it. Which is certainly more fun by the way.
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1/10
A Movie For Crude Folks
james184415 August 2012
Either a movie has merit and redeeming value or it sucks (as Will Farrel would say). There were a few humorous skits within the film but what was self-evident was the vulgar and repeated bad jokes and skits that had no logical flow with the subject of this movie. Sometimes an idea can be over done to an extreme.This is the trouble with this movie. I'm not a prude but there is such a thing as "Beating a Dead Horse". That is the serious problem with this story. I've enjoyed many things that Will has done but this one is a big strike out and deserves to be called what it is....trash. Fifteen minutes of funny and an hour of crap.
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Brilliant
jason31-321-90474411 October 2012
10/10 for comedy for me and I love the way they have pulled no punches at taking the Michael out of US politicians. Ferrell is at his funniest here but it's Galifianakis that steals every scene he is simply hilarious in this movie. For me ferrell is just doing a good impression of Bush JR in this movie haha and spot on he is too. Showing how dumb the voters are is genius and how corrupt the system is, The actors must of been willing to do this movie for free! I doubt many Americans would even see this but oh so obvious to us UK viewers. This is Ferrells second funniest movie behind Step Brothers so if you enjoyed that very silly movie but ultimately hilarious then make sure to watch this too.
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1/10
One Trick Pony Ferrel- no rosette!
TheMightyHodgeheg2 May 2013
Warning: Spoilers
I confess I am not a huge Will Ferrel fan although I find him watch-able in films which don't completely revolve around him. This was not one of them. I thought I'd give it a go as I love political satire but this was just a really poor display of watered down, repetitive slapstick full of stereotypical characters and scenarios.

To its credit the plot accurately conveyed the joke that is American politics, particularly how it is big business and back handers that are really pulling the strings and making all the big decisions and the typical overplaying of 'family values' and every politicians close personal friend Jesus H Christ, in their campaigns. The sheep voters of course were all too happy to lap it all up and sway their opinion based on the lame speeches and false promises of the candidates.

It was all supposed to be tongue in cheek and satirical but in reality it was just depressing and patronising. I don't need my comedy to be intelligent by any means but the whole thing was just appalling. Honestly I laughed a total of 3 times. Once was at a baby being punched in the face.

It really is just Will Ferrel playing his usual 'I'm an egotistical, air head, a-hole' character, with a slightly different hairstyle. I preferred the guy who played his opponent (Zach Galifianakis), both character wise and performance wise.

One thing that really bugged me about this film was the way that the women were represented. Yes politics is a male dominated environment but apart from a few mute women extras there was only one female who really had more than a few lines and being Asian they were all pretty much jokes about racial stereotyping and she was a maid. The rest of the females were there as sex objects basically. The usual blonde bimbo 'Lewinsky' character, another who was walking around with her nipple accidentally showing, the hot little, supportive wife who actually turns out to be a power hungry, gold digging, cold hearted cow. At one point Will's character seduces the oppositions wife just to smear his character and campaign and of course she is warm hearted and naive so had to be chubby and therefore grateful for his sleaze. Oh and they had one black male speaking part and it was only a couple of lines and he was technically mixed race, in a film set in North Carolina? Yeah okay so a dumb comedy doesn't have a duty or responsibility to represent society accurately but it makes it very clear who this movie is aimed at.

This is jock humour, strictly for Ferrel devotees and I had hoped for more. He really is a one trick pony! Watch the trailer and then move on with your life. Because those are the only good scenes in the whole movie, condensed into a few seconds.
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9/10
Deeply Funny Political Satire!
g-bodyl17 February 2014
Now I'm not the one for politics and in fact, I despise politics on a whole. However, I found "The Campaign" to be a wildly funny affair. There is plenty of over-the-top humor here to satisfy comedy fans and of course the big laughs here involves a certain conversation around a dinner table as well as a baby. As a political movie, the film plays it pretty safe as both the Left and the Right are only moderately poked at.

Jay Roach, known for his brilliant work with Austin Powers and Meet the Fockers, returns to direct this film. Cam Brady has been a North Carolina congressman for several terms now and is on the verge of securing another term. But, he ends up running against a Marty Huggins, who happens to be the candidate no one expects to be running for office.

Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis are both very funny here and they seem to feed off each other's energy. This is Ferrell's funniest film since Step Brothers and he just has scene after scene with end up as laugh riots. Galifinakis is really good too despite being somewhat type-casted. But the golden moments are when these two are on screen, going at it with each other.

Overall, this is a really funny film and funnier than I anticipated. I tend to avoid political films, but since this film has no agenda rather than to poke fun at politics, I was all for this. My fear was that the trailer gave many points away, but be prepared for some unexpected jokes. This is a very funny movie. I rate this film 9/10.
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4/10
Script not worthy of the two stars
jason-m-cook29 July 2013
The comedy in this movie, such as it is, is weak and a little flat, which is something I didn't think I'd ever say about a film starring Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis. I chuckled a couple of times, but otherwise I felt no urge to laugh. There is a distinct bitter streak to the humor, with little heart to redeem it until one specific moment of unbelievable mood whiplash. The actors did fine, but they've had much better material in other vehicles (Ferrell in Anchorman and Galifianakis in The Hangover being just two notable examples).

It's a shame because I'd heard some good things about The Campaign, and with those two comedy stars it should have been something greater than the sum of its parts. Even something equal would have been good. This just didn't seem like the right movie to bring the two together.

The supporting cast was fine, though nobody really stood out from the pack. It was fun seeing Dan Aykroyd and John Lithgow as the corrupt millionaire brothers, even if their plot seems to have been taken wholesale from Trading Places. Jason Sudeikis wisely plays his role with subtlety, in contrast to Ferrell and Galifianakis.

I guess The Campaign isn't the worst way to spend 85 minutes. But by the same token, I'm glad I didn't put down the money to see it in the theatre.

And the less said about the punching of the baby, the better.
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7/10
Hopefully viewers who are fence sitters or leaning to the right might learn some valuable lessons from the film (one can hope).
Hellmant22 August 2012
'THE CAMPAIGN': Three and a Half Stars (Out of Five)

Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis combine forces for this political satire attempting to throw some comedic commentary at audiences this election season. Ferrell plays a North Carolina congressman running for his 5th term unopposed when two corrupt businessmen try to unseat him by pitting him against a naive tourism director who always had dreams of a career in politics, played by Galifianakis. The film was directed by Jay Roach (director of all three 'AUSTIN POWERS' films and the first two of the 'MEET THE PARENTS' franchise) and written by Chris Henchy and Shawn Harwell (one of the writers of the TV series 'EASTBOUND & DOWN'). It was produced by Ferrell, Roach, Galifianakis and Adam McKay and co-stars Jason Sudeikis, Dan Aykroyd, John Lithgow, Brian Cox and Dylan McDermott. The film is funny for the most part and does have some on target political commentary. Not as classic as some of Ferrell's greatest comedies but one of his better ones for sure.

Ferrell plays Democratic Congressman Cam Brady, who as the film opens is getting ready to secure his fifth term in North Carolina's 14th District unopposed. A sex scandal hurts his popularity though and two greedy businessmen named Glen (Lithgow) and Wade Motch (Aykroyd) see an opportunity to unseat him and put a naive tourism director, named Marty Huggins (Zak Galifianakis), in his place to do their bidding for them (which involves illegal business with Chinese corporations). What starts out as a friendly campaign duel turns in to a heated battle very quickly with all the name calling and ugly accusations you'd expect from a big time political election. This causes havoc on both the men's private lives including heavy drama with their families.

The movie's jokes are somewhat hit-and-miss but for the most part work. They're vulgar but not overly dumbed down; neither Ferrell nor Galifianakis ever break character or overact (like what often happens in comedy satires like these). The film is of course supposed to be funny and lighthearted but the messages of the story are very serious and clear. The Motch brothers are obviously an intended diss at corrupt businessmen Charles and David Kotch (who Galiafanakis recently annoyed by calling creepy). Hopefully viewers who are fence sitters or leaning to the right might learn some valuable lessons from the film (one can hope). This is where the film's greatest strengths lie but it is pretty funny as well.

Watch our movie review show 'MOVIE TALK' at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c2vhN3UBteY
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7/10
The dark art of politics
freemantle_uk5 October 2012
It is election year in the United States where the President, the whole of the House of Representatives and a third of the Senate stand for election. American politics is notorious for being very bitter and negative: so it seems like a fair target for a comedy.

Cam Brady (Will Ferrell) is a four term Democratic representative of the 14th district of North Carolina, based around the city of Hampton. He is running unopposed for the seat but he is in trouble after he accidentally leaves a sexually explicit message on a born-again Christian family's answering machine. His backers, the industrialists the Motch brothers (John Lithgow and Dan Aykroyd) decides that Cam is a dud and set out to find a someone to run against him. They find the nice, but naïve and weird Marty Huggins (Zach Galifianakis) to run as a Republican. The campaign quickly descends into false accusations, personal attacks and physical violence. But the Motch brothers have their own dastardly plan for Hampton.

The Campaign is a hit and miss comedy, but it is mostly hit. Ferrell is the best comic performer out of the pair but both comic leads have their moments. The jokes vary from verbal, crude and swearing based, Ferrell's trademarked adlibbing and physical: the biggest laugh in the audience I was in was when the baby got punched in the face. As a political satire this is a film that lacks subtly, but to anyone who is interested in American politics you can easily see the references to negative campaigning, making false accusations that someone is a communist/socialist or an Islamic terrorist just through implication, how candidates just use any rhetoric to get elected without actually having any ideas or policies and how political campaign teams think more about image then they do about doing what they think is best for the district and the country. I personally thought the film missed a trick because I think the filmmakers should not have mentioned the political parties the candidates represented and so you could not tell them apart.

The Campaign runs at a brisk 85 minutes, but near the end the film felt like it running out of steam, both story and jokes wise, near the end. The writing was not smart enough when it could have been more ambitious with its satire.

It is still an enjoyable enough film for people who are fans of Will Ferrell and it is at least worth a rental.
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8/10
The votes are in and hilarious wins the Campaign
rgblakey9 August 2012
Both Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis have proved numerous times that they are comedy gold with the right project. Both of them have also been a part of some clunkers even if they were still able to make it work. Their latest film brings these two comedy giants together for The Campaign. Will Ferrell proved himself in this kind of role with his numerous turns as George Bush, but can Galifianakis bring a new character to the table to knock this one out of the park or will the polls close early?

The Campaign follows a long-term congressman who makes a high profile mistake prior to an upcoming election. Looking to get more influence in office, two wealthy business owners see this as their opportunity to get someone in office they can control. Enter the director of a local tourism center who is clearly the most unlikely choice, but with the help of a cut throat campaign manager gives him a run for his money like no other. The trailers for this film looked amusing, but really never delivered anything more than average. Hopefully this will not deter people from checking this movie out because it is way funnier than the trailer lets on. This is easiest one of the funniest movies to come along this year and probably the best of these two guys in quite a while. They pull no punches with this over the top political comedy that not only delivers on the laughs but takes jabs at the current state of politics. It could be reading too much into it, gut if you look closely you can see them taking this time to really poke fun at almost every aspect of government office and their scandals. The only real issue with this movie is the ending as it kind of takes an about face from the rest of the movie. While it doesn't ruing any of the comedy gold that the movie delivers throughout, it just seemed like it took an unlikely direction from where it was heading.

This movie is funny as hell and delivers that one two punch that is missing in most comedies today. It's been too long since we got a good political comedy and this one not only fills that void it takes it above and beyond. If you're a fan of either of them or raunchy funny over the top comedy then get to the poles quick and check this movie out.

http://www.examiner.com/movie-in-dallas/bobby-blakey
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