Casa de mi Padre

It's time for another embarrassing admission: I love Mexican telenovelas! That being said, Will Ferrell's Spanish in "My Father's House" is just bad enough that I can almost understand it, and trust me: I do NOT speak Spanish, so the captions are a treat.

This delightful spoof takes itself seriously every single second of its running time, which always adds to the fun. Even when the badly made fake white puma laughed sardonically, I bought every moment; and I loved the horseback riding on stuffed animals with a fan blowing their hair. Any time our three heroes are riding in the pickup, the same scene goes by the "windows" and you can practically see the wires holding up the bushes. Rough scene shifts and laughably poor continuity were fun all the way, e.g., our hero has a roll-your-own cigarette in his mouth, dribbling tobacco down his shirt front. In the next camera angle...no cigarette. Then from another view, there is the cigarette again!

Will Ferrell is the estupido second son of a successful Mexican rancher. All the dialogue is in Spanish with the exception of a creepy American DEA officer who speaks a clumsy combination. This cast is terrific:
  • Will Ferrell ("The Other Guys") is Armando, a well-meaning but clumsy hombre who will never measure up to his padre's expectations. He is still a virgin because the "right woman" hasn't come along. I think his chances would improve if he could only learn how to roll his own cigarettes!
  • Genesis Rodriguez ("Man on a Ledge") Sonia seems to be the "right woman" despite the fact that she is engaged to Armando's brother and appears to be connected to drug lords. In keeping with the telenovela tradition, she sings at the end!
  • Diego Luna ("Y tu mamá también") Raul is Papa's favorite. Little does the old man suspect that his son's obvious succe$$ is NOT based on livestock!
  • Gael Garcia Bernal ("Letters to Juliet") is an especially great "bad guy!" He lights two Canadian Slim cigarettes and smokes them alternately with either hand. He wears white cowboy boots that are waaaay too long, and is obviously having a blast! Actually, a sharp-eyed Amazon.com reader enlightened me: Those white boots are not too big for him. They are what they call chutaros and they are made that way. Some are a lot longer than the ones we see here.
There is a hilarious scene where two Mexicans are discussing the drug trade. The "Narco" rationalizes that he isn't selling drugs to Mexicans, just fat, stupid Americanos. I was delighted with the equal time granted to the Gringos before the film ended!

The sound track is loaded with referential, mariachi-tinged música that adds to the fun. The men's trio "No Se" ("I Don't Know") was a delight. There is a sample of it in this preview.
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