Between Two Ferns: The Movie (2019)

Coming seemingly out of nowhere, this feature length version of the beloved Funny or Die segments benefits from its relatively short running time. The plot is not particularly complicated, following Zach Galifianakis as a fictionalized version of himself who hosts the titular cable-access celebrity interview show, pursuing a lucrative late-night television hosting job despite his acrimonious rapport with his celebrity guests. There are some shades of Steve Coogan’s “Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa” here and there, but unfortunately this movie lacks the same wit: It’s not particularly interested in Galifianakis as a character and as a result, the on-the-road inserts are rather negligible. However, the mock celebrity interviews are genuinely hilarious, extracting significant laughs from the format’s absurdist, deadpan humor along with great assist from the likes of Keanu Reeves and Benedict Cumberbatch (among many highlights), and it’s fun to see so many effective cameos in one movie. So while the movie’s structure isn’t particularly interesting, there are enough laughs in the mock interviews to warrant at least one viewing, even for non-fans. Stick around for some genuinely hilarious bloopers during the closing credits.

Rating: ★★★ (out of 5)

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