Special Correspondents (2016) Poster

User Reviews

Review this title
65 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
8/10
Way better than most comedies..
Schatz876 June 2016
In all likelihood it went over many people's heads, considering how inundated we are with pointless comedies that often receive a far higher rating on IMDb or higher ticket sales at the box office.

Great to see Eric Bana killing it again, but this time figuratively in a role as a self-confident, rogue reporter at a local news station. So too is the rest of the hilarious character gallery, along with their quirky foibles, from the manipulative money-grubbing sociopath played by Vera Farmiga to the over-emotional America Ferrera. Not to mention Gervais in the leading actor playing a fumbling doofus technician with low self-esteem, but with the redeemable quality of being kindhearted and well-meaning. Until he snorts coke, that is.. The film has a fair amount of subtle humor baked into the dialogue and contains a broader societal satire e.g. on the superficiality of news media, on the obsession with fame in today's docusoap infested society, and on the callous amorality of the drug gangs of Latin America, etc.

It's also a feelgood movie you leave with a smile, but that nonetheless doesn't suffer from being syrupy and maudlin which is so typical for the genre. The low-budget remake of the original French film feels like a fresh take in a world where Hollywood constantly churns out focus group-tested flavorless rom-coms.
19 out of 23 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
Not as bad as some reviews say
charlieinmanci2 May 2016
Granted, it's not a movie you got out of your way to see.

But, it is just a nice film to watch. I would regard it as casual, it's one of them movies you go , well i have a couple hours to kill might as well see that.

Great movie to have on in the background.

It's slow paced relatively predictable, i do think it contains more English humor then American, but i don't think it's meant to do real big laugh out loud moments.

Not every movie should have you on the edge of your seat.

Happily watch it again
48 out of 67 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
Ignore the harsh reviews...really enjoyable movie!
ste_201079-760-38991329 April 2016
I wasn't sure what I was expecting to be fair, I love Ricky Gervais and I own everything he has done. A lot of negativity had come from various reviews I'd read and I thought - Well I'll be the judge, jury and executioner!

Admittedly the film has a slow start but does build, as the film continued I got more into it and was eventually gripped even though it was quite predictable the direction it was heading in. For me Ricky's on-screen presence makes it automatically feel-good, especially for me as I'm a fan of his work. Occasionally throwing some funny one-liners in, occasionally sounding like his character of Andy Millman from Extras which for me helped keep the Ricky we know and love current. Eric Bana was a great choice to play the main reporter, at first I thought it would be like sticking Arnie with David Jason kind of combo but they play well off each other and have great chemistry, Eric as we know is Australian so a convincing American accent was spot on.

Overall, ignore the harsh reviews, I know it's opinion but let's face it, they ain't got a clue what a genius Ricky is, it's not always about the comedy, the film isn't hilarious but is quite funny in places, Ricky has tried his hand here at something else and I believe pulled it off well. Highly recommended if you love Ricky's work and want to see him try something different then go for it, 9/10 is a deserved rating!
56 out of 82 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
Decent but not special
Cazdaraz29 April 2016
Special Correspondents is funny but not anything spectacular. It's another one of those comedies where people make bad decisions and semi- funny things happens. I was eager to see this movie due to the cast and the story, and I expected to be entertained after seeing the first trailer. But unfortunately, it fell a little flat.

It's the perfect movie for those times you just want to watch something, be mildly entertained but not forced to really pay attention to the story. If you are easily entertained by stupid things, this movie is for you. But if you are tired of cheap jokes, clichés and stupidity, then this movie might not be for you.

My rating is based on the fact that in the end I did not feel like I had wasted a few hours watching it, it made me silently laugh a few times and it was decent. Decent but not special.
33 out of 46 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
A most accurate description of the USA
karlericsson17 May 2016
Everything in news is fake and propaganda - so why risk your neck for it? I sincerely hope all journalists "sent out" on dangerous missions learn how to stay at home and fake it, risking nothing. It makes no difference anyhow. Nobody Believes what they are reporting, because everybody knows that if anything of it was true, then it would probably not be allowed and censored Before reaching out.

This is the reason why I rather Watch films then I Watch the news if I want to know what's going on. When everybody says it's fiction, then maybe some of it is true, whereas when everybody says it's true it cannot possibly be so unless it's so obvious that it is impossible to deny, in which case you do not need the news telling you.

In other Words: This is satire at its best.
28 out of 41 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
Loved it
I don't watch many comedies because most of them are awful, but I am a fan of Ricky Gervais, and so I had to give Special Correspondents a go. After watching it, I can say that it is the best comedy I've seen in a few years. I'm not sure why all the negative reviews. It has many of the kind of characters Ricky Gervais is known for, so maybe those reviewing it, just don't like his style.

I thought it was really well written and executed, and the cinematography was very impressive for a comedy.

Sure, it had a few flat moments, but it kept my interest throughout and made me laugh out loud a lot, right up to the end.

I've already recommended my colleagues watch it, and I would happily sit down and watch it again.
35 out of 53 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
Not that 'special,' but not that bad either
bowmanblue5 May 2016
I'm basically a really big fan of Ricky Gervais (and if you haven't seen anything he's done before you should know that he's one of those people who you either love or hate – look him and his work up before continuing!). I pretty much watch whatever he's in, so I was quite happy to find this film on Netflix. At first, I was disappointed, but – I'm pleased to say – that it got better.

It's about a couple of radio news reporters who miss their flight to a war-torn country and have to fake their reports from the comfort of a friend's apartment in New York. However, things don't go too well and begin to spiral out of control. As I watched it I wasn't that impressed with the way it began. Basically, there weren't that many jokes in the opening half hour. I guess that they were trying to set up the characters and general plot, but the ratio of laughter to screen time suffered. However, I'm glad I stuck with it – it gets better.

After the half hour mark it does get funnier. If you've seen the promotional material you'll probably see that Ricky Gervais is starring with Eric Bana. Despite the former Incredible Hulk being the more obvious choice for leading man, I never really felt that it was 'his' film. It's like he's a token leading man to Ricky Gervais. I only noticed in the end credits that the film is both written and directed by Gervais. It's almost like he knows he's not leading man material and did his best to give a more 'traditional' star the chance to 'front' the film. However, Eric Bana never really seemed that comfortable in the role and, despite being the front man, is also the straight man. Gervais (or others) get all the best (and by 'best' I mean funniest) lines and by the time the film ends you sort of realise that it's Gervais' character who, despite being set up as 'Robin' to Bana's 'Batman' was the one who had gone on the journey and been through the character arc.

But, like I said, at the end of the day I was glad I watched it. But then I'm a fan of Gervais and, despite what you may think when you sit down to watch it, it's his film and Bana is actually the supporting cast member. I've seen some reviews on the net saying that 'Special Correspondents' is boring. I wouldn't say that, but I also wouldn't say that many people would feel like they got their money's worth if they'd paid full price to see it at the cinema. Netflix is doing wonders making and broadcasting their own stuff. And this is a prime example. It's sort of a made-for-TV movie which you'll probably enjoy because it's part of your package and haven't really had to pay through the nose to watch.
14 out of 19 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
More than enough laugh out loud moments
danjonezz-418645 May 2016
Pretty ridiculous storyline. It waivers towards the end as well.

But more than enough laugh out loud moments to go around. Good escapism at 10pm last night. I wasn't really expecting a tour de force in witty, edgy comedy.

It is difficult because other genres you can always take critics opinions seriously. They can look at the film as a whole rather than rating it on the gags. What I find funny will not be what others will find funny, so how much should we care about some person I will never meet totally panning the film?.

A good offering from Netflix. It will have an audience regardless of how many people are criticising it. It is what it is.
18 out of 26 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
3/10
Rubbish
rkRusty29 April 2016
As the great philosopher Karl Pilkington once said, "When anything's done quickly, it tends to be sort of s**t."

The script for this could've been done in half an hour. Either Gervais' writing ability has waned as his fame has grown, or has been hampered by the constraints of writing for film. His TV series' have been uniquely excellent; character-driven comedies occasionally punctuated by bursts of emotion. His full-length feature films however have been mediocre at best; Ghost Town had none of his irreverent wit, The Invention of Lying was just a rehash of the same ideas as his first film, and now Special Correspondents feels like the work of someone who has made too much money to care. This is a man who had the restraint to end one of Britain's greatest and most popular sitcoms and forgo a boatload of cash because he feared it would tarnish its quality. Instead he churns out this.

Clichéd characters, predictable plot, very little comedy - the entire film rides on Gervais' previous successes. Take him out of the equation and you are left with a bargain bin film with a "not quite A-List but close enough to put them on the box art" supporting cast and a story that seems to have been forcibly reworked for Hollywood by the 'men upstairs' to make as much money and appeal to as broad a range of people as possible.

Predictable, forgettable cash-grab, laden with all the tropes of a poor Hollywood comedy that an earlier Gervais would've loathed. Don't waste your time.
57 out of 105 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
I was laughing the whole way through
jamestsividis4 May 2016
Warning: Spoilers
The set-up and execution for this movie was on par. This movie didn't waste much time before getting into the ridiculousness of the plot. Nothing new or surprising occurred once the big lie begun and they were pretending to be hostages. The Spanish couple were lovely and cute in their kindness yet naivety. Sleeping with the guy's wife just threw an other spanner in the works to eventually reveal.

I especially enjoy when I can see a joke coming from a mile away and then it finally turns out to be true. Them being actually kidnapped is a great example of this. I thought it was hilarious. And I think I just witnessed my favorite scene ever in a movie when (I'm going to have to learn the character's names if I'm going to write a review aren't I?) Ian shot his way through the prison camp. As soon as Frank was afraid to take the shot at the bad guy, I knew Ian would step up to take the shot but that scene exceeded my expectations completely. He then took an automatic weapon and shot more bad guys. The more unrealistic the situation the better in my eyes.

I probably enjoyed this movie so much because I relate to Ricky's character and personality so others are not likely to enjoy it as much as I so emphatically have but it's a cool movie if you don't mind a little silliness. To be honest I don't know what I mean by silliness because I don't know why people don't like this movie. Maybe look at the poor reviews. The thing that annoyed me only a little bit was the slowness of the Spanish characters but I can easily overlook that. Great job guys on the movie!
20 out of 33 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Can you spare a penny for a hero?
blanche-225 September 2016
Ricky Gervais and Eric Bana star in "Special Correspondents" a comedy from 2016.

Bana plays Frank, a narcissistic radio journalist considered excellent, though he's often in trouble with his boss for getting into murder sites by stating he's the police, etc. His technician is Ian Finch (Gervais), whose wife, Eleanor (Vera Farmiga) has just left him after sleeping with Frank, though he didn't know she was Ian's wife, and Ian doesn't know about it. Ian is totally devastated over her leaving him and is writing letters to his wife the size of novels.

When Frank is told to go to Ecuador and cover an uprising, he talks Ian into going with him. Unfortunately, Ian threw out some stuff before leaving, which included the passports and some other important papers. This means they are stuck in New York.

They head to the home of Ian's friends, Brigida and Domingo (America Ferrara and Raul Castillo) where Ian is staying. The pair is well- meaning but not the sharpest knives in the drawer.

Ian decides to pretend they are in Ecuador with sound effects and people yelling in Spanish as Frank broadcasts. It becomes somewhat complicated when they are told to go to the American Embassy. That's impossible, so they decide on something else.

Meanwhile Eleanor is hard at work in the United States.

It is very hard for me to like today's comedies because to me, they're dumbed down with stupid characters, plots, and vulgar jokes.

I loved this comedy, and I think Gervais did a fantastic job writing the script. I had never seen Eric Bana do comedy and he was excellent. Vera Farmiga had the most fun role and she milked it for all it was worth. America Ferrara and Raul Castillo are deliberately exaggerated characters, and they both handled their roles well.

And as the sad sack Ian, Gervais is great and has wonderful chemistry with Bana.

Enjoyable and as the rest of the people who liked it said, don't pay attention to the reviews, just watch it and have a good time.
5 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
What did you think you were going to be watching?
soundmeetssound30 April 2016
If comedy is the result of characters' reactions to ridiculous circumstances with ridiculous actions then this is comedy. Not hysterical, but still comedy.

People have focused on Ricky Gervais with this so that's where I will focus, but seriously every performance turned in was appropriate to the film. And for the most part I enjoyed it.

I think if Ricky Gervais did this movie in his usual comedy style it wouldn't have worked at all. This reminds me of a time in the 90's where movies seemed to ask "How many situations can we make the Odd Couple work in?" and if this came out then I don't think it would be met with the same negativity.

It's just a light movie with a collection of decent punchlines and worked well to help pass the time on a lazy Saturday afternoon.

Had it been in theaters I could of taken my grandparents or parents to see it and enjoyed it with them but wouldn't have been pleased to have paid to see it alone.

It's by no means a classic but I'll let it land on the better side of 6.5 stars.

While I like Ricky Gervais, people who talk like he is some sort of comedic cinema great need to look at his works, he certainly tries a lot of different things but as of yet, in my opinion has only been successful in The Invention of Lying, Derek, and Extras... Honestly that's it. He's a writer/ comedian 1st and an actor 3rd.

Yes I know what I said.
20 out of 34 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
3/10
Avoid
phesboy1 May 2016
Unfortunately this is a really poor effort and there is very little that I can point to as a recommendation for a reason to watch it.

The plotting is all off, scenes either go on way too long or key plot points are resolved in a kind of 'oh, so that happened then' way. Consequently it lacks any energy. Gervais isn't really up to the job of acting his part and this makes it difficult to buy into it at all. Key moments ripe for comedy are repeatedly squandered, not because the film doesn't attempt to be funny, but because so many of the jokes are very weak. The script is functional but very obvious and lacks finesse. I guess the best I can say is that there's a couple of passable turns from actors but they are not really given anything to work with. That woman from Trainspotting must be wondering what she was even doing there.

It sets out to be a kind of slightly sentimental comedy with a bit of action but really fails to be touching, exciting or funny. There's literally hundreds of forgettable films from the 1980s that are far more passable than this. Seems like Ricky Gervais has just taken on more than his skillset can handle here.
25 out of 52 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
Ridiculous, Brilliant. Ridiculously Brilliant
sheferd3 May 2016
Ignore complaints of "2 dimensional characters" and "cliché'd story lines". It's a comedy not an action drama (though it does include action and drama very well).

Maybe it's the "British comedy" element that non-brits don't get, but Special Correspondents was truly brilliant.

Honestly, everything I expected to happen throughout the movie did eventually happen, but it was still somehow shockingly hilarious the way it inevitably did.

For me this wasn't about the characters, it makes no apologies for their "2-dimensionalism", but it was their charm that lead me through the hilariously ridiculous story perfectly.

The "cringe" moments only added to the hilarity and I was thoroughly entertained the whole way through.

Yes it isn't a very 'sophisticated' story, but just take off your film analyst specs and enjoy this movie for what it is. I'd go as far as to say it was genius. I loved it.

Would watch again.

and again.
15 out of 30 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
This one should be a classic because...
alfiecycling11 May 2016
This movie has just the right delicate balance of comedy and social commentary.That's why.

My favorite scene, because of my musical background, is when the two are about to enter a dilapidated saloon in Ecuador and hear " modern jazz music" from within only to find out that it is not being played traditionally. Quite literally, Laughed MAO!

A terrific story and cast here, folks. Also,as a fan of the Ugly Betty series, I was delighted to see America Ferrera looking very pretty. Watch it. If you don't like it well...I'll eat my recently dry-cleaned toupee.
6 out of 10 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
2/10
Cringe-worthy
beatty8630 April 2016
I had to make an account just to review this film because I love Ricky so much, but we can't let this pass. Am I here to throw dirt? No, I'm here to give an honest review.

Special Correspondents is special in only one way: that it actually got made. Think of some of the world's most cringe-worthy, not-worth-your- time comedies that stink of trying their hardest... and you can put this comfortably on the top of that list.

And no, it's not one of those movies that are so bad it's good because of the simple fact that it's trying so very hard to squeeze out a laugh. It's not bad for the terrible attempt at being funny, either. It's bad for legitimate reasons as well, such as the lighting, the cinematography, the make-up (DEAR GOD, WHO DID THE MAKE-UP?), and the completely missed direction. I guess the sound was okay..?

Eric Bana, Vera Farmiga, America Ferrera, and Kevin Pollack give Ricky so many chances to add color, flavor, character, story - anything to make this more than people just saying words in front of a camera - but he clearly couldn't catch any of it. Honestly, how can such a legendary comedian not understand the importance of simple timing? Let a touching shot rest a bit, shorten some of the neanderthal-like delivery, and we might have actually been able to care a little bit about these characters enough to make us laugh when things go awry.

I know I've mentioned the make-up already, but SERIOUSLY! I spent half the movie wondering if Ricky is developing skin cancer around his left eye, and Vera Farmiga must be pregnant again if she really is glowing that yellow.

The cinematography is like that of an 80's, low-budget TV series that didn't make it passed the pilot. I guess you can see what's going on... which I don't think it would matter if you couldn't.

The story is bland. You've met all these characters before, you've seen the same events unfold, there's nothing even remotely interesting or worth being invested in, and what could be interesting is clearly avoided. For example, why is a dude with such a thick British accent running around in America as a sound technician, and how did he end up with bombshell Farmiga? But I digress. You can literally piece the story together comfortably in your head within the first 20 minutes - if you last that long.

This movie just has the feel to it that Ricky is riding his own ego. I love him as a comedian, but this is absolute rubbish.
20 out of 45 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
Every review here missed the real point...
mladeninho12 May 2016
Yes, it is not blockbuster or 50 million dollars movie,

but look at a bigger picture or extract some parts from the movie where you can see where is currently our society right now. Mislead and lie about everything seems like a very easy thing to do (even now when we are sort of "hi-tech" society and everybody knows everything about everyone). I found this movie as a funny, entertaining and a clever way to tell the audience on what level of freedom, speech, culture and awareness we are, and how stuff usually works. Well, Ricky is smart man who got interesting views of and on everything :) and actually I am very pleased watching this movie and kinda expected to see 90% of reviews to be "nothing special, but OK...etc". 10/10 Really nice one, Ricky Gervais.
5 out of 8 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Its not all that bad.
egilostebovik4 May 2016
OK. First off all i gave it 8 because i don't think it deserve the bad critics it gets. its more a 7/10.

So why is it a 7/10?

Its Ricky Gervais - He has a kind of weird humor and i think this movie turned out more or less how he planed it. Its a quick comedy for people to enjoy and have a laugh. The plot is fine guys. Its stupid but the film works. Actors do a good job and yes, it will not win an Academy award anytime soon, but that again cant be the goal with a half smart movie like this. Just watch it. If you have Netflix its free. I think you will have a good time for the 100 minutes running time. And just a good time with some half cheap laughs is what this film is all about.
9 out of 18 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Better than these reviewers realize
Jumpygrouch3 May 2016
I can totally get why someone would say this is a poor effort. They don't get what's happening in entertainment today. Ricky makes it seem effortless. For example, My husband couldn't watch Bojack Horseman, until he heard it playing in our kitchen (I was watching while I cooked dinner) and then he thought it was hilarious. I'm willing to bet that if the negative reviewers find themselves watching this again by accident, they will find it better than they realized, like Coneheads or Goldmember -- our expectations ruined it for us. Ricky Gervais just makes us expect something that will shock and amaze and when he comes lightly like a thief in the night, we are underwhelmed until we come back and realize this is the type of comedy that creates classics. it doesn't hit you over the head, doesn't anticipate, but guaranteed to amuse over and over again. Real comedy from people who love to laugh -- Jack Benny style.
6 out of 12 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
Netflix original film Special Correspondents review
Thatmoviesguy29 April 2016
Special Correspondents a new film written, directed and starring Ricky Gervais. The film however not so special. Eric Bana co-stars as a know it all, hot-shot news reporter along side Gervais, a technician who get caught up in a web of lies in order to keep their jobs.

The film keeps you mildly entertained throughout, the main characters for one reason or another are very likable. Even with Gervais playing the same character he always plays in all his films. The film isn't great especially with a storyline that is somewhat unrealistic and side characters with below average IQ's. Despite this the movie draws you in with it's comedy and chemistry between Bana and Gervais. Review 5/10
7 out of 17 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Nice. Shouldn't be promoted as a comedy
magus-43 May 2016
It's all a matter of taste of course. But this is by no means a bad movie. Sure, if you expect to see a comedy you're waiting for X jokes per minute and I can see you would be disappointed. This movie could be billed as mild satire/drama. There aren't any hilarious laugh out loud moments. But I felt there were a lot of big smiles and grins. The story moves along nicely. There's a solid structure. There are some nice developments and moments and although the plot may be predictable, it still kept my attention. The acting is good as well. Gervais takes a risk by playing a real character instead of the caricatures he often plays (and I find very funny). The other characters are a bit stronger, especially the Latin American couple. But again, you'll have to get the dry humor. Movies like Capricorn one and Wag the dog with similar premises are much stronger. But this is a nice, yet softer take on that type of premise. All in all a nice movie to watch.
5 out of 11 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
Story is King in Film
This is the kind of film that used to end up being a summer blockbuster. The fact is now with all the CGI Star Hero Captain Explosion films out there, a brilliant little film like this ends up with mediocre scores.

But the fact is this is one of those fun little films that hits on all cylinders and is funny from start to finish. Perhaps my attention span is too long for the vast majority of the crap lobsters that constantly need shiny zig-zaggy flying things to keep their attention. But, I found the story, comedy, and acting 100% satisfying.

What I mean about this film used to be the kind of film that would end up being a summer blockbuster were it not for the CGI driven mega-million Robots of Death type films, is that it used to take only a good story to appeal to a wide audience. Tootsie wasn't a hit because of visual FX.

Maybe my 10 stars is a bit excessive. And I would tend to agree with the more realistic rating of 8 stars the IMDb staff gave this film. But I hate to see a film this good languish at 5.8 stars because American's attention span has devolved to that of a blue bottle fly high on a triple espresso.

The premise of the film kept me interested and amused for the entire time I knew they were pulling the gag. And the characters were all well thought out and funny. The story was a great mix of absurd circumstances, adventure, and suspense.

And as I know its a bad idea to try to prop something up by tearing something down, but all I can say about the people who rated this film lower than a 7 is that you need to get an attention span. Not sure if there is too many chemicals in your drinking water or your addicted to crack. But calm down, start eating right, exercise regularly, learn to meditate and sit back and learn how to be entertained. All the CGI spaceships in the world will never be enough to fill the empty void that devourers sensory input. Watch the classics, Doctor Zhivago, The Great Race, It's a Mad Mad Mad World, and dig the story. Turn off your damn phone and sit and watch the damn film.

Granted this is a made for Netflix film. And it was never intended to compete with the major players coming out for summer screens. But as we know, Netflix is cheap entertainment. And if like me you've axed your cable bill and use Netflix and Amazon Prime as your entertainment tools, then for the tiny cost this film cost me as a viewer it was totally worth it. And really what percentage of my 9.99 a month did it take to help make this film? Probably not much.

So to sum up, is this a good film? Yes! It's funny and suspenseful. Will it make you not want to see Captain America Civil War? No! And that isn't what it was trying to do. It was supposed to be a great little film to make you laugh and feel good. And it did that for me. Maybe its because I understand that Story is King in film.
5 out of 12 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
Lacks pace, but not bad.......
daverobson-9534229 April 2016
So..... It took just over 20 mins for the first laugh in the movie. Then the laughs came intermittently every 10 mins or so.

Don't get me wrong, this was a reasonably entertaining watch, with an unusual (not original) concept and a few proper laughs. But aside from that, it was too long, it lacked pace and was just generally a bit boring at times.

Comic wise, I didn't really like/get Eric Bana, the real laughs came from Gervais, but considering he wrote and directed this movie, that's not all that surprising. Although, there are some good laughs from the supporting cast.

I'm not going to waffle on about what was wrong with this movie (there was a lot and life is too short). If you are just looking for a no brainer, to watch and ignore when you are bored, then this ticks the boxes. If you want to watch a decent comedy for your designated 'movie night' then avoid this and watch something with substance.

I love Ricki Gervais, but I feel he has stretched himself a bit too much with this one. Still, I'm looking forward to the Brent movie and his next tour.

It's not a total write off, but it's no masterpiece either.

5.5 out of 10
5 out of 12 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Nice and funny :-)
erik-226-1856573 May 2016
I've never ever liked Ricky Gervais and can't stand The Office, but this is something very different. Picturing two underdogs that to avoid getting fired from the local radio station desperately avoid a disaster by dreaming up an alternative and execute it so well that it completely get out of their hands. The jokes are rather low key, perhaps some dry British humour. The movie may be predictable, but not without surprises and twists.

It's also a Netflix Original production and that's good - it wouldn't have worked as well in the movies, but is a rather nice TV story.

Lies and deceit - works very well :-)
4 out of 9 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
Lacks in comedy, succeeds in drama.
taryllsbaker29 April 2016
Special Correspondents is written and directed by Ricky Gervais and stars Ricky Gervais (of course), Eric Bana, Vera Farmiga, America Farrera, Kelly Macdonald and Raúl Castillo.

A radio journalist and his technician are required to report a rebel uprising in Ecuador but instead, after a mistake with passports, end up hiding out in New York faking their own kidnapping.

Gervais' work has always been weaker in the feature film format and this is no different, albeit there are some pretty good comedic moments here and there, I think it would be easier to critique Gervais for his wonderful skill in storytelling. Special Correspondents has some really nice moments in the latter half of the movie, I'd suggest the genre he was aiming for is more dramatic than comedic and it's at this that he succeeds.

He has great chemistry with Eric Bana as they bicker between themselves about the situation they've found themselves in, and the emotional and comedic core does eventually find its way to the foreground during the final arc of the story.

The writing is surprisingly light-hearted, especially as we've all become familiar with Gervais' darker and more risqué humour before his work on 'Derek' and whilst I like the change of pace, I found myself wanting a little more of that shade of comedy. Though I'm sure this is to come in his next project centred around one of his most beloved characters, David Brent.

The original score by Dickon Hinchliffe is beautiful. Luxurious strings with gentle melodies weaved in between the altering pace of the the screenplay. Gervais appreciates the classical use of music in film and has always tried to implement it in some way.

My verdict; Special Correspondents succeeds in the tale of friendship, but lacks in the comedic approach to certain situations. It's a nice movie, however, and I think it's definitely one to watch if you have the time. (Now streaming worldwide on Netflix)

Special Correspondents, 6/10.
6 out of 16 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
An error has occured. Please try again.

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews


Recently Viewed