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Guest serves up his best work since "Guffman" with "For Your Consideration"

by JD Warnock on November 19, 2006

in Print Reviews

Thank God for Christopher Guest. “For Your Consideration” is hilarious, thoroughly refreshing, comedic genius. Seriously, I laughed more genuinely than I have all year. “Consideration” is almost as good as Guest’s “Waiting For Guffman,” which is easily one of the ten funniest movies ever made.

The construct for the latest Guest classic is that of an independent film production called “Home for Purim,” made up of a cast of has-beens, never-weres and up-and-comers. Someone on the set posts comments on a blog that sparks undue buzz and sends the cast and production team into a frenzy over the attention and resulting Oscar hype. By the movie’s release, the title and substance of the film have changed and so have the actors swept up in the whirlwind.

“Consideration’s” cast are the principle players from the previous Guest outings “Guffman,” “Best in Show,” and “A Mighty Wind” – Parker Posey, Harry Shearer, Jennifer Coolidge, Michael McKean, Bob Balaban and Fred Willard to name a few. The screenplay was co-written by Guest and Eugene Levy who both have small parts, Guest as the film’s director and Levy as Harry Shearer’s agent.

The true revelation of “Consideration” is the remarkable Catherine O’Hara. She is so utterly brilliant in this film. I have rarely gushed about a performance this much, but it would be difficult to say enough about her portrayal of actress Marilyn Hack. O’Hara absolutely throws down in this film and gets to show off her comedy chops with one of the most unexpected on-screen transformations ever.

With “Consideration” there were no sympathy laughs. There is no need to accept anything funny at all as better than nothing, which is too often the case with recent comedy fare. As a matter of fact there were a few times I almost choked.  A Charlie Rose-like interview with several members of the cast is nothing short of priceless. Balaban and McKean’s writer-duo is unstoppable and Ricky Gervais from the British version of “The Office” mixes it up with the old pros beautifully.

We all have different comedy needs – and most of the time those needs are tragically unmet. Chris Guest just gets me, he understands my particular comedy requirements. As fond as I am of making Top Ten lists and “desert island-style” lists of albums I can’t live without, it strikes me that if I were to be forced to pick only a few movies to take with me on just such an island that Christopher Guest would be in someway responsible for one or more of them. At this point I’m fairly certain he can do no wrong and I’m likely to salute anything he runs up the flag pole – which may be the very definition of biased. Thank God for Christopher Guest.

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