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Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story
cast: John C Reilly, Tim Meadows, Jenna Fischer, and Kristen Wiig

director: Jake Kasden

92 minutes (15) 2007
widescreen ratio 16:9
Sony DVD Region 2 retail

RATING: 9/10
reviewed by J.C. Hartley
Rated 'R' in the USA, and my rated '15' certificate version has the full-frontal male nudity (thigh to waist, non-jiggly), as well as the drug abuse and sex scenes that presumably earned it, so hip hurray for liberal UK. This Jake Kasdan and Judd Apatow release didn't seem to garner the attention and plaudits of Knocked Up and Superbad; maybe the spoof biopic format didn't suit critics and fans, and maybe the format's sentimentality didn't sit well with the gross-out generation.

Dewey Cox accidentally slices his more talented brother in half with a machete, and fleeing the ire of his father ("The wrong kid died,"), vows to make something of himself and write the masterpiece which will capture his philosophy of life. Cue a welter of spoof performances, spoofs of other biopics, cameos, sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll.

John C. Reilly (Dark Water) is outstanding as Dewey, as is Jenna Fischer (Slither) as his great love Darlene, and Kristen Wiig (Knocked Up) as first wife Edith, who he marries in a sort of Jerry Lee Lewis underage relative sort of compact. The Jerry Lee link is emphasised by his marriage to Darlene, which takes place while he is still married to Edith. Dewey's career is a history of country music and rock 'n' roll, and some of the great names, and the bad things they did, associated with it. Only a rock 'n' roll mastermind would recognise all the references, but that kind of encyclopaedic knowledge of music and movies isn't a prerequisite to enjoyment.

Standout moments are Jack White as an incoherent Elvis Presley, The Beatles in India sequence, Brian Wilson's 'Smile' spoof, and most of the sex and drugs and sink smashing. This isn't great satire, this is just very silly and all the more enjoyable for that.
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