Special Correspondents: This Really Is Fake News.

SPECIAL CORRESPONDENTS

DIRECTED BY: Ricky Gervais

STARRING: Ricky Gervais, Eric Bana, Vera Farmiga, Kevin Pollak, Kelly Macdonald, Benjamin Bratt, America Ferrera, Raúl Castillo

GENRE: Satirical Comedy

YEAR: 2016

COUNTRY: United States, United Kingdom, Canada

News radio journalist Frank Bonneville (Eric Bana) enters a murder scene posing as a cop. After getting the details of the crime, he is removed from the premises and, immediately after, reports the story live on the radio. When he returns to the station, Frank is applauded by colleagues on getting the story before any other press, but his boss Geoffrey Mallard (Kevin Pollak) warns that if he breaks the law one more time, he’ll be fired.

That night, Frank’s sound technician Ian Finch (Ricky Gervais) takes his wife Eleanor (Vera Farmiga) to the station’s annual ball but has to leave for a stake-out with co-worker Claire Maddox (Kelly Macdonald). Eleanor then meets Frank, who sleeps with her, unaware she is married to Finch. The following day, Mallard puts Frank on a story about an uprising in Ecuador and assigns Finch to accompany him. However, Finch tells Frank he can’t go as Eleanor has left him. He also says he’s written a letter, begging her not to end their marriage.

Totally in Ecuador…we swear.

Since fake news or the struggle to find credible news is all the rage these days I decided to this was the perfect time for our Special Correspondents. Written and directed by Ricky Gervais, this “Netflix Original” has hilarious bullshit all the way down to the core. The main cast of Eric Bana, Ricky Gervais, and Vera Farmiga completely embody their characters providing plenty of expert chemistry (or lack thereof). Vera Farmiga’s character is by far the best one, as she steals most of her scenes just as she stole America’s hearts. Also, as the film’s premise is rather clunky to begin with, Gervais is able to turn it into comedy bronze.

Beyond the characters though, Special Correspondents is nothing more than a modest B-rated comedy. While there are some geniunely funny moments, the film is as trope-filled as any English comedy can be. However, this seems obviously done on purpose, a they cast plays to their strengths. Unfortunately, if you don’t like English humor, you might as well chuck this one deep into your queue for another day.

PROS:

  • Main cast performance.
  • Supporting cast performance.
  • Character design.

CONS:

  • Over the top British humor.
  • Trope-filled to the brim.
  • Clunky premise.

SCORE: 6.0 / 10

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