Will Ferrell stretches the limits of comedy just a little bit with Ferrell Takes the Field, currently airing on HBO.
It's a mockumentary that succeeds on some levels but is not very good on most. The premise of Farrell taking his legendary comedic talents to the baseball field is pretty original, as he gets traded and plays for a bunch of different teams in the Arizona cactus league before the 2015 season.
The tone, however, is off, with Farrell over-acting the supposed seriousness of his endeavor. He did the same thing recently in his role as disillusioned Eric Jonrosh in The Spoils of Babylon, which was equally bad (even if Ferrell's bit parts were the best thing about it).
Farrell is no doubt slipping (ala Sandler) since his heyday with Saturday Night Live. In fact, he hasn't been in anything really compelling at all since his run of Blades of Glory, Semi-Pro, and Step Brothers back in 2007-2008.
I'm not sure if he'll ever recover any past glory at this point. And even if Farrell Takes the Field is far from his worst work, it's just not worth wasting your time with when there's so much other great stuff out there to be watched these days.
Even the fact that this is thankfully raising funds for cancer doesn't redeem it as entertainment worth watching.
**1/2 out of ***** stars
Bonus: In longing for better days, Ferrell's best movies are:
6. Wedding Crashers
3. Old School
2. Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy
1. Austin Powers: International man of Mystery (even though it's Farrell's first move and he just plays a bit part in Mike Myers' masterpiece)