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The Ringer script review

01.22.2002

Here comes Honest Abe again.  This time he just got finished reading the latest film to be produced by the Farrelly Brothers and will reportedly star Johnny Knoxville.  Let's see Abe's thoughts on THE RINGER:

THE RINGER (positive, minor spoilers)
Steve is a your basic office schlub and when he tries to get himself a better position, he inadvertently costs the janitor a couple of fingers (don't ask!) Welcome to The Ringer, the latest helping from the Farrelley Brothers. The basic plot is about a normal guy who enters the special olympics with the plan to win the gold, dethrone the champion, and have his uncle bet on the games so they can both clear their debts. Sounds like good family fun right? I'll admit after the first few pages I thought this was just gonna be a typical dumb slapstick comedy that tries to hard but I was so wrong. This is actually a comedy with good intentions and it portrays the athletes of the special olympics as people not needing our sympathy but people who are just as competitive and for lack of a better word, "normal" as the rest of us schlubs. Steve's uncle Gary is in it to the mob for several grand so he's the one who comes up with the idea of rigging the olympics so assuming the identity of "Jeffy", Steve enters the race thinking he'll clean up only to realize how out of shape he really is. The champion is Jimmy but as we'll see, Jimmy is really not a nice guy. Enter Lynn, a volunteer at the olympics who takes Steve under her wing to help him compete. (Gee, think Steve is gonna fall for her???) One of the things I liked best was the way their relationship was handled, especially the development of Lynn's character and her motivations. Some of the other athletes such as Billy, Thomas and Mark are able to see past Steve's lie but they actually help him in his quest to defeat Jimmy. Steve really comes to care for these guys and at the same time really gets in touch with himself and his unfinished goals. Sounds mushy at times but it really is handled with a fair amount of taste (come on, it can't be all clean, it's the Farrelleys). I was impressed at how the majority of the characters are well developed and you really do get to care for the athletes (except Jimmy cause he's a prick). Bottom line: I'd definitely catch this most charming little comedy that thankfully isn't nearly as gross-out as it could have been. There are a few squeamish moments (it's the FARRELLEY!) but it's quite restrained and instead focuses on character motivation and plot.

Source: JoBlo.com
Tags: Hollywood

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