Will Ferrell is back, this time with Rachel McAdams, in a film that is…well.. a Will Ferrel movie in every single way: Eurovision Song Contest.
Fans of American comedy flicks are by now well familiar with Will Ferrell. His loud, obnoxious, and hilarious characters have had us all rolling hysterically on the ground, wiping tears from our eyes for years. This time is no different.
Eurovision Song Contest follows dorky Icelandic pop duo Lars Erickssong (Will Ferrell) and Sigrit Ericksdottir (Rachel McAdams), as they somehow manage – through a series of flukes – to get into the Eurovision competition. The duo travels from their quiet fishing village in Iceland to participate in the glitzy contest in Edinburgh despite the fact that the odds are seriously stacked against them. Naturally, hilarity ensues.
While Ferrell is once again embracing the spoof-comedy roll he’s known for, it’s enjoyable to see McAdams taking on a sillier role. Demi Lovato makes a brief and quite odd appearance. The film even has a bunch of cameos from real Eurovision winners, which must be delightful for all the die-hard fans who are missing out on this year’s competition because 2020 is the year of the apocalypse.
Unfortunately, the talented McAdams in an unusual role isn’t enough to hold the film together. Despite a few very effective jokes, the film seems to have missed the mark in a number of other arenas: Accents are forgotten and then picked up again sporadically; The film is rife with stereotypes; and Ferrell’s character works on one’s nerves (perhaps more so than usual). BBC’s Will Gompertz writes, quite accurately, that “the depiction of Icelanders and their culture as an unsophisticated bunch of beer-drinking, whale-watching, knitted jumper-wearing innocents is tiresome and ignorant”.
However, it’s been a tough year and we’re all in need of a little comic relief and escapism, and this movie does just that. It also had, admittedly, some annoyingly catchy music – but how could any film about Eurovision get by without that?
The costumes are bad, the story is cliche, but the laughter it brings is real. And it even has invisible elves! While we can’t rate Eurovision Song Contest very highly as a piece of cinema, we can confirm that it succeeds massively in being what it is : a Will Ferrel movie.
Essential Millennial Rating: 2.5 out of 5 Avocados