The Campaign

The Campaign

Written by Shawn Harwell and Chris Henchy
Directed by Jay Roach

Meeting of the International Brotherhood of Serious Men

Arriving early enough we aren’t sick to death of political commercials yet, The Campaign delivers solid laughs as it carpet bombs the political process. Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis pull no punches in the dirtiest campaign ever, but sadly what might just be a glimpse at the future. As the battle gets increasingly fierce, the antics get increasingly wild. And just you watch, some idiot candidate will copy something from this film. It will happen.

What happens when you eat too much Curves cereal!

Money rules politics, now more than ever. The Campaign does more to show the problems with the Citizens United verdict than any documentary. Comedians are one of the few brave enough to spit truth in the face of grand power, and the only ones to do it in a way people will listen. The Campaign uses actual political parties, which I thought would hut the film, but actually makes it a stronger piece. It manages to hit all sides of political excess and holds no punches. Director Jay Roach was fresh off of Game Change, a serious look at the 2008 presidential election and the Sarah Palin decision, giving him added insight that helped sharpen the knives here.

Basic political speak is taken to the woodshed, and you realize just how stupid some of the buzzwords sound when outside of the political framework. Dogs are declared unAmerican, the Chinese become scary words as the current job-taking enemy du jour, and everyone under the sun becomes the backbone of America.

And once again Tars has sold out, as this was a pre-release free screening that I scored tickets to.

Snakes on a Campaign!

Cam Brady (Will Ferrell) – Your typical Bill Clinton Democrat, saying broad platitudes that even he knows are useless, all while banging any piece of tail that heads his way. His wife is there just because she likes to ride with winners, and Cam Brady is so caught up in being Congressman Cam Brady that he begins to make some fatal mistakes.
Marty Huggins (Zach Galifianakis) – Noted community weird guy, Marty Huggins shows up out of nowhere to be the candidate on the Republican ticket. His innocent ways are soon steered into the mud thanks to a campaign runner provided by the Motchs (Tim Wattley) who teaches Marty how to fight dirty. Marty can become the candidate needed to defeat Cam Brady, but is he still Marty Huggins? The North Carolina setting is like coming home for Galifianakis, as his uncle was North Carolina Congressman Nick Galifianakis.
Do it. DO IT!!!!

I can’t believe it…it wasn’t butter!

After a political sex scandal mixed with Cam Brady’s bungling of the fallout, he weakens in the polls enough that he becomes vulnerable. While fully expecting to sail through without a challenger, things go off the rails when Marty Huggins shows up to register as his opponent.

Marty Huggin’s campaign is brokered by democracy buyer billionaire brothers Wade and Glenn Motch (Dan Aykroyd and John Lithgow), referred to throughout the film as the Motch brothers. And if you think that sounds eerily similar to the Koch Brothers, than you win a gold star! Even spookier, the pair choose to play the brothers in manners similar to the Duke Brothers from Aykroyd’s Trading Places! This has already caused the Koch brothers to freak out and act like giant babies. And I fully look forward to the giant temper tantrums on the right after this hits wide release.

If Stuart Smalley hosted a fishing show…

The Motch Brothers are attempting to buy candidates to get their diabolical plan of Insourcing approved. Insourcing is building sweat shops in the US and importing basically slave labor to run the factories, thus saving the money of shipping. They feel Marty Huggins is just the patsy to be easily used to further their ends.

The meetings and debates between Cam Brady and Marty Huggins start out friendly, and then slowly ramp into awfulness and WWE style brawling. The battle becomes an actual battle at points, with punches thrown, and Cam Brady even punches a baby. And a dog. One of the debates (with an awesome argument about Communism and a book written by Cam Brady when he was 7) breaks into a brawl.

The costs of the increasingly nasty campaign takes its toll on both sides, their personal lives become shambles, and the shambles are then stomped on. The battle becomes less winning the election, and more winning back their souls. But also winning the election.

Typical liberal media and their ambush questions…

Standout performances from Karen Maruyama as Marty’s dad’s maid, who speaks in a stereotypical black mammy accent for extra pay (much to her annoyance), and Dylan McDermott as the Motch’s creepy campaign director Tim Wattley, who slinks in and out like the poisonous viper he is.

And while I find the ending rather unrealistic, I do like it’s spirit. It holds far more to the values and ideals that America is supposed to stand for than what we get. America doesn’t deserve the ending of The Campaign. Not yet. Maybe one day…

The Campaign, in the words of someone leaving the theaters, is “Definitely like a total political satire or something, maybe!” I did not modify that quote in any way.

Imagine this on the side of Ricky Bobby’s car…

Rated 8/10 (firefly kid, goat kid, not getting angry, keytar, getting religion, campaign logo, ringer dog 1, ringer dog 2)

Please give feedback below!

Email us and tell us how much we suck!

This scene is not in the cut I saw.
And this scene has been digitally altered because the MPAA are jerks!

One thought on “The Campaign

  1. Pingback: The Campaign | Mysterious Order of the Skeleton Suit

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.