Saturday Night Live - The Best of Will Ferrell - Volumes 1& 2
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The best of Will Ferrell's appearances on Saturday Night Live. 2-DVD set, special features include auditions, photo gallery, dress rehearsals, outtakes, TV appearances.
The Best of Will Ferrell - Vol. 1
The latest in the line of Saturday Night Live's great character players (including Dan Aykroyd and Phil Hartman), Will Ferrell showcases his fearlessness in this 72-minute collection. Whether exposing skin or taking a pause beyond the normal limits, Ferrell induces hard laughs like with the cowbell rocker in the first sketch. The selection includes Ferrell's spot-on impressions of Cub announcer Harry Caray, game-show icon Alex Trebek, President Bush, and Inside the Actor's Studio host James Lipton. As with other SNL Best of... retrospectives, there are short snippets to go along with the full-length sketches that include excellent selections of Ferrell's returning characters Craig the Cheerleader and the swinging Culp brothers. A must for fans, and the DVD includes an intriguing audition footage in which Ferrell leaps from character and character.
The Best of Will Ferrell - Vol. 2
There is no drop-off in laughs from the first to second volume of Will Ferrell's work on Saturday Night Live. Giggle along with his recurring characters, including James Lipton (interviewing Kate Hudson as a wonderfully ditzy Drew Barrymore), a wickedly clever George W. Bush, and one-half of the smarmy Lovers couple. This volume spotlights Ferrell's ability to go successfully over-the-top whether as an overbearing boss (check out how long he keeps stabbing a doomed coworker), a strict airplane pilot, an absent-minded doctor, or the world's oldest baby. There's plenty of unabashed (near) nudity and risky violence, which keeps the SNL tradition of "Not Ready for Prime Time"; check out what longtime hosts of the morning talk show resort to when the much-needed teleprompter fails. All that plus "Janet Reno's Dance Party" (with guest Rudy Giuliani) makes this the perfect pick-up for those who could not get enough of Ferrell with volume 1. --Doug Thomas
• Photo Gallery
• Dress Rehearsal
• TV Appearances
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It captures most of his funny SNL material with only a few misses. If you want more, also buy Volume 2 (not nearly as funny on its own, but the extra volume of sketches will help your collection).
Here's my rating of the sketches, each out of 5 stars:
Marty & Bobby Culp: Drug awareness assembly - funny, too short, 4/5
VH1 Behind the Music: Blue Oyster Cult (with Christopher Walken) - A true classic, 5/5
Dissing your dog training video - Hilarious, 4.5/5
Spartan Cheerleaders Chess Team tournament - Quirky, 3.5/5
Robert Goulet: Coconut Banger's Ball - Highly amusing, 4.5/5
Snips - Will in thong at business meeting/Mini Cell Phone - Disturbing / funny, overall 4/5
Rachel Dratch gives birth to Will - More disturbing! 4/5
Jeopardy: Burt Reynolds, Sean Connery, French Stewart - Classic, 4/5
Inside the Actors Studio: Charles Nelson Riley (Alec Baldwin) - Classic, 3.5/5
The Devil teaches Garth Brooks a song - Amusing, 3/5
Snips: George W. Bush/Janet Reno boxing Guliani/Clinton, Monica, & Saddam on the phone - Good versatility, 4/5
Space the Infinite Frontier with Harry Caray (& Jeff Goldblum) - Weird! 4/5
Hot Tub Luvas (with Drew Barrymore) - Amusing, 3/5
Roxbury Guys (with Jim Carrey) - Dated but worth a chuckle, 3.5/5
Snips: Good Morning Latte/Dog Show - Amusing, 3.5/5
Nude guy poses for Art Class (with Lucy Lawless) - Creepy!, 3.5/5
Family yelling at dinner (with Sarah Michelle Gellar) - Amusing, 3.5/5
Jacob Silj: Voice Modulation (on Weekend Update) - Amusing, 3/5
Extra features: Audition as Harry Caray, Conan, etc. - Good stuff, 4/5
Overall rating, 4/5. Basically if you are a Will Ferrell fan at all you need this DVD in your collection. They definitely could have had more Bush, Goulet, and the Culps, but definitely worth having!!
Ferrell was my all-time favorite cast member, and there are literally DOZENS of his hilarious skits that didn't make it in this collection. Remember his portrayal of Fred Friendship in the "Jingleheimer Junction" sketch with Tim Meadows and Cameron Diaz? I nearly passed out from laughing too hard when I first saw that one. And there are too many more to mention.
I looks as if SNL just took the bits from the TV-aired "Best of Will Ferrell" episode and put it on a DVD, along with a few other bits and pieces. If they'd truly mined for Ferrell gold, they'd have put out a 2-DVD set with a LOT more.
To be fair, though, there are some features on this disc which are very interesting and were previously unavailable. We get to see 2 of his appearances on Conan O'Brien's show (featuring Will in character as Robert Goulet in one of them) and his audition spot for SNL in the mid 1990's. In that spot, we get to see the origins of some characters and sketches that would find their way onto SNL over the years.
Still, having this DVD is better than NOT having a Will Ferrell DVD. But distilling his best bits onto a 72-minute DVD is like releasing a Beatles "Best Of" compilation on a 4-song EP.
This DVD has a couple of extras including an audition reel, outtakes, and more. Everyone has their favorites from the show, and given the amount of material Ferrell was in, chances are that not all of yours are here. Fear not, as there is a second volume available, which is enjoyable, although not as consistently good as this one. For fans of Ferrell or "Saturday Night Live" this is a key volume to own.
Many of the critical comments made in the earlier reviews are valid. Nevertheless, I believe these two disks are a more than worthwhile purchase for SNL fans. Ferrell was a fearless performer who, according to one of the SNL writers, actually gained weight for the show simply because he thought it was funnier to be fat. Watch the Blue Oyster Cult "cowbell" skit, and the "Dale McGrew - U.S.A!" bit and it's hard to disagree.
I do wish they had included the bit where Will gets a badger stuck up his butt, but you can't have everything. Enjoy Will Ferrell while we wait for the next stand-out SNL performer (with one eye on Mad TV).
This contains most of his funny characters...the Professor and his "lover," the cowbell skit, Pres Bush, Craig the cheerleader, the morning show, and of course the high school music director. These are great to have on hand to pop in when I want a laugh.
There are a few skits missing...I wish they had put the skit when he is in the backyard yelling at the kids to "Get off the Shed"!!! But overall, I think the hits are here.
If you are a Will Ferrell fan, I don't see how you can be disappointed with this collection of skits.