Jackie Moon (Will Ferrell), the owner-coach-player of the American Basketball Association's Flint Michigan Tropics is on a mission. When the national league announces a plan to discard all the squads except the top four teams, Moon rallies his teammates including Monix (Woody Harrelson) and Clarence 'Coffee' Black (Andre Benjamin) to work together for glory and popularity, to make their basketball dreams come true.
Review by Louise Keller:
Will Ferrell can be very funny. This is not one of those times. Tired and tawdry, this tedious misfire is a misjudgement on Ferrell's part, namely in terms of material. Okay, okay, it's colourful in parts, and there is an amusing sequence in which a red-cloaked Ferrell has a punch up with Dewey the bear, but overall, Semi-Pro is a boring boor.
There's Ferrell wearing polka-dots and spangles; Ferrell biting his own hand; Ferrell dressed as a colourful sun wearing shades; Ferrell in lime green sequins on roller skates leaping over cheerleaders in white bikinis. Ah yes, there's Ferrell in the dumpster snacking on left-overs; Ferrell having a heavenly hallucination; Ferrell as a pop star singing his once-only hit Love Me Sexy. Most of the time Ferrell wears tight little shorts (cringe at those crutch shots) and a 70s curly wig with grisly sideburns.
But Ferrell is at the mercy of the material, and the material (and Scot Armstrong's screenplay) is strictly second rate. In fact it is semi-pro. In every respect. There's nothing semi-pro about the cast, however; they're an enthusiastic bunch and I especially liked Andrew Daly and Will Arnett as Dick Pepperfield and Lou Redwood (remember Arnett in Blades of Glory as the wondrously intense Stranz Van Waldenberg?) the hilarious radio commentators, who sit court-side drinking and smoking and adding their takes on impossible goings-on. I did laugh when Ferrell's Jackie Moon decides to implement the use of eyeliner on the players (to hypnotise their opponents) and the unconventional (and unethical) way in which the dud Tropics team boosts their popularity is wacky to say the least. But boredom is the enemy of comedy, and in the end Semi-Pro becomes surrounded.
DVD special features include three deleted/alternate scenes, an alternate ending, three improvised scenes, six behind the scenes featurettes, a video clip (Love Me Sexy) and Flint Tropics Hot Talk With Dick Pepperfield
Published August 8, 2008
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SEMI-PRO: DVD (M)
CAST: Will Ferrell, Woody Harrelson, Andre Benjamin, Maura Tierney, Andrew Daly, Will Arnett, Andy Richetr,
PRODUCER: Jimmy Miller
DIRECTOR: Kent Alterman
SCRIPT: Scot Armstrong
CINEMATOGRAPHER: Shane Hurlbut
EDITOR: Debra Neil-Fisher
MUSIC: Theodore Shapiro
PRODUCTION DESIGN: Clayton Hartley
RUNNING TIME: 90 minutes
AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Roadshow
AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: April 3, 2008
SPECIAL FEATURES: Deleted/alternate scenes; alternate ending; improve scenes; behind the scenes featurettes; Love Me Sexy video clip; Flint Tropics Hot Talk with Dick Pepperfield
DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Roadshow Entertainment
DVD RELEASE: August 7, 2008
RIVERSIDE SCREEN PREMIERES
A program of premiere screenings of new movies prior to their commercial release
on 6 consecutive Tuesdays, starts February 17, 2015 at Riverside Theatre,
Curated & presented by Andrew L. Urban, discussion to
follow with special guests. Briefing notes provided.