*. It’s a skit. There’s a perfunctory story about the champ taking a fall and having to achieve redemption. There are various characters who are just quick sketches, including Ricky Bobby himself. From this a series of gags are strung. Not physical gags so much, but the crude humour of people behaving stupidly or in a vulgar manner.
*. I say that without being censorious. I thought the foul-mouthed Bobby kids were fun. I just mention it because that’s really all there is to say. Talladega Nights isn’t a satire of anything or a movie that’s making any kind of bigger point.
*. Sacha Baron Cohen. Damn. Could they have given him a single funny line, or did they just think that having a gay NASCAR driver with a French accent would be enough? Given how he’s presented in the third act (his husband missing, his motivation in racing Ricky complicated) it seems as though the writers didn’t have any clear idea of what to do with him. Maybe they just figured he’d improvise.
*. The DVD comes with a lot of funny extras. Even the commentary with director Adam McKay and “friends” is done as a feature-length comedy track. Indeed, I found it just as funny as the movie itself. Which is to say, not hilarious but worth a smile or two. That said, the whole effort — movie, commentary, extras — is just a collection of random funny people saying and doing occasionally funny things. Also there are cars racing around a track and crashing. I thought it was OK, but I won’t be bothering with it again. It will live on in a couple of memes.