Friday, May 6, 2011

Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story


“If Elvis and Buddy Holly are the Cain and Abel of rock and roll, Bruce Springsteen is Zachariah, Iggy Pop is Methuselah, and, of course, Neil Young is the wise prophet Ezekiel, then what does that make Dewey Cox?”

            Walk Hard is one those movies that is so silly and ridiculous that you will be quoting it forever. It is a spoof of all the biopics that had been released previously to this. It takes from Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, Ray Charles, and just about any singer from the fifties to the seventies mixes them all up into one person who seems to have lived a hundred different lives.
            Dewey Cox’s life is defined by the accidental (and hilarious) death of his older and very talented brother Nate. His father hates him for what happened to Nate always reminding him that “the wrong kid died” every chance he gets. At fourteen Dewey runs away with his girlfriend and gets a job at a black nightclub where they “come… to dance erotically.” Dewey learns all the songs the band performs and comes to the rescue one night when the lead singer (played by Craig Robinson) gets sick and his hands are broken. A group of nice Jewish men are in the audience that night (“they run show business”) from the record company. They like what they see and sign Dewey to a contract.
            Dewey has a runaway hit with his song “Walk Hard” and becomes a major singer with hit after hit. With the hits comes the downfall and so much hilarity. He becomes addicted to just about every drug thanks to his drummer Sam who always warned “no Dewey you don’t want any part of this shit” and then would proceed to give Dewey the drug.
            There are so many crazy scenes that I laugh just thinking about but I don’t want to give the whole movie away, you will just have to see Walk Hard for yourself. I will give you one scene because it is just so genius. Dewey decides he wants to go to India. This scene is supposed to be during the 1960s when The Beatles were all into meditation and the Indian culture. While in India Dewey gets to meditate with “The Beatles”:

The reason why Walk Hard is so brilliant is because of the cast. John C. Reilly went all out as Dewey there is almost literally nothing he did not do for a laugh. He sings all the songs and does a wonderful job. When the movie came out I was just really starting to get into The Office so once I saw Jenna Fischer (yes I am a diehard JAM fan)  was playing a character I had to go see it. She plays Dewey’s love Darlene. If you can only think of Fischer as sweet adorable Pam Beasley get ready to have your whole image of her completely destroyed! Fischer is such a good actress she was so funny and so dirty as Darlene.

 Kristen Wiig plays Dewey’s first wife Edith. Wiig is just a panic in whatever she is in because she is not afraid of acting crazy or looking horrendous. Matt Besser (Upright Citizens Brigade, Reno 911!), Tim Meadows, and Chris Parnell round out Dewey’s band with each one being crazier than the other.  So many actors pop up along the way to play different singers or just crazy characters: Frankie Muniz plays Buddy Holly, Jack White from the White Stripes plays Elvis, Ed Helms from The Office is a manager backstage at a concert, Harold Ramis is one of the Jewish men who sign Dewey, Jane Lynch, David Krumholtz, Jack McBayer, Paul Rudd, Jack Black, and Justin Long are just some of the many faces that come up throughout the movie.
            Walk Hard is so much fun to watch. I can remember seeing the movie in theaters with my brother. We were the only ones in the theater and we were just laughing nonstop. It is one of those movies that I can never get sick of watching and laugh even though I know every line and every scene. If you want to watch Walk Hard find the two disc edition and play the Unbearably Long Self Indulgent Director’s Cut it has even more wacked out scenes and lines.