Casa Di Mi Padre comes from the minds of Adam McKay and Will Ferrell, the men behind the Gary Sanchez Production Company, which has seen success with the releases of films such as Step Brothers and The Other guys. The film takes the style of Mexican telenovela and B-movie Mexi-westerns, and then shovels on the funny.
Armando Alvarez (Ferrell) is a humble if slightly dim witted ranch hand for his father, in love with his country and the land he roams with his two best friends. He wants nothing more to please his father, but when his dubiously successful older brother returns to his family ranch with a beautiful woman by his side, Armando becomes involved in a war between his brother, the powerful drug dealer Onza (Bernal) and the DEA. Armando must finally step up and become the man his father always wanted him to be.
Casa’s initial problem in the UK is its source material, Mexican soap operas are not familiar territory, and unlike the more superior comedy Black Dynamite, which spoofs blaxploitation fantastically, the telenovelas and Mexican B-movies Casa bases itself upon are not widely known outside of the Americas, so it does often feel as if some of the humour derived from this is lost. Despite this Casa boasts a heavy amount of visual gags, from extremely off point continuity to shoddy painted backdrops and even worse rear projection. The idea of having the film entirely in Spanish is incredibly gutsy and Will Ferrell as Alvarez, playing the most un-Mexican looking Mexican in film history, does a surprisingly good job with his dialogue and moves away from the loud, hot headed bravado of his former success. Gael Garcia Bernal as the film’s drug dealing villain Onza does his best in the role, but often feels a bit weak acting alongside comedy veteran Ferrell.
Although it has some funny moments the film’s largest flaw is its length. It often feels that it has been spread very thin, with Ferrell and co awkwardly filling gaps within the film with pointless sketches in an attempt to fill the movie’s running time. The film could have been a lot funnier as a short; Director Matt Piedmont comes from the Funny Or Die website, which Ferrell and McKay co-founded. However, it is clear to see that he has had trouble trying to make the leap from short to feature length production, bringing the visual gags in bucket loads but lacking the skill of creating a film that keeps the audience interested for its entirety.
The Blu-ray release has some solid visuals, with the entire film drenched in a soft gold hue which looks great in hi-def. Extras are somewhat lacking, with the standard comedy selection of deleted scenes, gag reel and a commentary featuring Matt Piedmont, writer Andrew Steele and Ferrell, which at times comes off funnier than the film itself.
Overall Verdict: An interesting concept that may get a bit lost in cultural transition from America. Casa has a lot of visual gags but seems overlong and under thought at times, one for the Ferrell fans.
Commerciales (spoof commercials)
Reviewer: Gareth Haworth