The Other Guys

PLOT (spoiler alert!!!):

Nerdy detective Allen Gamble (Will Ferrell) is a forensic accountant who is more interested in paperwork than hitting the streets. Tough, but dim-witted Detective Terry Hoitz (Mark Wahlberg) has been stuck with Allen as his partner ever since he shot Derek Jeter during the World Series. Allen and Hoitz receive no respect from the other officers, namely detectives Martin (Rob Riggle) and Fosse (Damon Wayans, Jr.), who trick Allen into firing his gun in the office (a “desk pop”), and Captain Gene Mauch (Michael Keaton) leaves him with a wooden practice gun as punishment. Terry detests Allen’s extreme cautiousness, choice of music, and is baffled by and infatuated with his beautiful wife Sheila (Eva Mendes). They both idolize cocksure detectives Chris Danson (Dwayne Johnson) and P.K. Highsmith (Samuel L. Jackson), who are considered the city’s best policemen even though they frequently cause millions of dollars in property damage catching criminals. During a pursuit of a group of jewelry robbers, Danson and Highsmith die when they jump off a 20-story building to continue pursuit, after agreeing to “aim for the bushes”. The two were mourned by the police force as heroes despite their odd deaths, and Martin and Fosse are in line to fill their shoes.

Allen and Terry begin to investigate a scaffolding permit violation by multi-billionaire David Ershon (Steve Coogan), but wind up uncovering a much bigger plot by Ershon to cover his losses to his client Lendl Global, and Allen and Terry agree to put aside their differences to solve the case. Lendl CEO Pamela Boardman (Anne Heche) hires a team of mercenaries led by Roger Wesley (Ray Stevenson) to make sure Ershon pays her back, and to make sure no one stops him from doing so, creating a roadblock for Allen and Terry.

During their investigation, Allen confides in Terry about his college life running a dating service, though refusing to admit that he was a pimp as Terry correctly points out. When his life spiraled out of control, he was sent to the hospital where he met Sheila, and he promised himself and Sheila that he would never get out of control again. However, when having dinner one night with Sheila, she tells Allen that she’s pregnant, causing Allen’s old dark personality to re-emerge, and she kicks him out of the house. Meanwhile, Terry tries and fails to reconnect with his ex-fiance Francine (Lindsay Sloane), who walked out on him due to his reckless behavior.

Their investigation comes to a halt when Ershon’s attorney learns of his plan to cover his losses, leading Wesley to kill him and make it look like a suicide. Mauch splits up Allen and Terry, sending Terry to traffic and Allen to patrol. Allen still tries to solve the crime on his own, even though Terry thinks it is a dead end, having settled into traffic. After learning that the jewelry robbery that Danson and Highsmith died over was staged so that Wesley and his team could break into Lendl’s accounting firm next door to alter their records, he finally gets credible evidence and earns his gun back. Allen then convinces Terry to rejoin him.

They go to Mauch, who admits he’s been holding off on the case because Ershon has high-profile connections that could ruin Mauch, and he allows them to finish the case off-the-books. They go to an investment meeting Ershon is having and realize that the $32 billion Ershon seeks, initially believed to be coming from the New York Lottery Office, is really coming from the New York Police retirement fund. They escape with Ershon to his private apartment, and Ershon tells them that the money for the pension fund is already in his account, ready to be transferred to Lendl’s account. Allen and Terry make amends with their respective significant others the night before.

In the morning, they drive to the bank to stop the transfer, evading Wesley’s team, groups of Chechen and Nigerian investors Ershon owes money to, and police officers who are told Allen and Terry have gone rogue. They reach the bank and halt the transfer, but Wesley arrives and shoots both officers. Mauch finally arrives with police backup, rescuing the two and arresting Ershon and Wesley. Ershon’s arrest leads to a stock market crash and the subsequent federal bailout of Lendl. Wesley is charged with the murder of Ershon’s attorney. Terry gets married to Francine, although he is still infatuated with Sheila. Allen and Terry believe that the true heroes are the ones who make the world a better place, not the ones who appear in the newspaper or on TV. The film ends with a peacock flying by the screen in reference to Terry’s remark, “I’m a peacock, you gotta let me fly,” as Terry and Allen drive off.

Figures and statistics relating to Ponzi schemes, Bernie Madoff, and TARP bailouts are shown during the ending credits. When the credits finish, a short scene is shown where Terry tells Allen a joke over dinner at a restaurant.


I’ll be the first one to admit that, while I enjoyed most of The Other Guys, some of it was just too overt the top or confusing, even for me.

That being said, I didn’t hate this film the way some critics and bloggers seem to be doing. At the same time, I’m not going to praise it as an “upgrade from the failed Kevin Smith film, Cop Out. He really should take notes.

So, what is The Other Guys about? Well, we have two desk cops (there for different reasons), who suddenly get the chance to step up, thanks to a certain unexpected accident involving the “supercops” played by Samuel L. Jackson and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. After said accident, we go one a series of events with Ferrel and Wahlberg. Hilarity ensues. Oh, and there’s also this little plot thing about a Ponzi scheme.

There are some hilarious moments in this film, mostly involving the banter and chemistry between Ferrell and Wahlberg, who work surprisingly well together. Add in Steve Coogan as a comedic villain, if you will, and the formula works.

A recurring joke throughout the film is how Ferrell’s character can keep attracting these super hot women, such as his wife Eva Mendes. I found myself asking the same thing, but anything can happen in the movies, right?

The cast is full of hilarious actors and, for lack of a better term, A- list actors. Each one has great chemistry with the rest of the cast and doesn’t try to outshine the other, with the exception of Ferrell and Wahlberg, for obvious reasons.

There is a little bit of action here and there. After all, this is a cop flick. Is it worth mentioning? Well, other than just that its there, not really.

In the end, The Other Guys is one of those films that some will love while others will leave scratching their heads. I thought I’d be one of the former, but ended up as one of the latter. Does that mean I didn’t like the picture? By all means, no. I just think I need to see it again before I go adding it to my collection. Should you see it? Sure, it won’t hurt you to have a laugh, will it?

3 1/2 out of 5 stars



2 Responses to “The Other Guys”

  1. I would have liked to see a little bit more of Samuel Jackson and Dwayne Johnson before their untimely “exit”. They really were hilarious. I enjoyed The Other Guys although it lost some steam toward the end.

  2. Mystery Man Says:

    yeah, seems to me they could have done something more with them rather than just have them in there for a few minutes, build them up, and then they were gone. just made no sense to me.

    thanks for the comment!

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