The month of June brings you the third edition of the John C. Reilly Factor — Thomas J’s latest character study. To find more related material, visit the Features menu up top and search the sub-menu Actor Profiles.
Part of the fun of creating this feature is getting to prove the versatility of this particular performer. There’s a reason I went with JCR and today’s edition proves it. We leap from drama to comedy here. I hope you enjoy.
John C. Reilly as Dale Doback in Adam McKay’s Stepbrothers.
Role Type: Lead
Character Profile: The dictionary definition of ‘man-child’ has a picture of Dale Doback beside it. Dale is in his forties and living at home with his father, refusing to accept growing up as a part of life. He’s immune to getting a job as well as a haircut or a girlfriend or anything resembling responsibility. His life is upturned when his man-child equal in Will Ferrell’s Brennan Huff moves into his home after both their parents marry.
If you lose JCR, the film loses: the comedic chemistry that gives the film a purpose. Will Ferrell is good but the film wouldn’t be as funny if he were paired with someone else. Stepbrothers isn’t a career highlight for a man who can move in and out of genres without effort, though it stands to reason John C. Reilly showed up on set and dedicated himself to Adam McKay and company, issuing forth a suitably ridiculous performance that champions the apathetic’s fantasy of floating through life aimlessly. Together, he and Ferrell make an adopted sibling duo that’s at once completely over-the-top and strangely realistic. When the going gets rough, the inane get going (at each other’s throats). McKay’s story is funny, sure, but it’s Reilly’s chemistry with Ferrell that makes Stepbrothers memorable at all.
That’s what he said: “Dad, we’re men. That means a few things. We like to shit with the door open; we talk about p*ssy; we go on riverboat gambling trips; we make our own beef jerky. That’s what we do, and now that is all wrecked!”
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Photo credits: http://www.pandawhale.com