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Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby


Latest Home Video

Dec 11, 2006

MPAA Rating:



Will Ferrell

Leslie Bibb

Sacha Baron Cohen


2006 Sony Pictures

Still shot from the movie: Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.

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Overall D+
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Making the Grades

Ricky Bobby (Will Ferrell) has been at the top of the NASCAR circuit for a long time, thanks in part to his childhood friend Carl Naughton Jr. (John C. Reilly). Working in cahoots, his teammate routinely uses a racing tactic to slingshot the hot shot and his car across the finish line.

But all the wins, wealth and a hot, blonde trophy wife (Leslie Bibb) have gone to Ricky's head. On and off the track, he's anything but humble and the attitude is rubbing off on his two boys, Walker (Houston Tumlin) and Texas Ranger (Grayson Russell) who habitually bad-mouth their grandparents and other adults.

However, all of Ricky's smugness evaporates when a top-rated French Formula One racer (Sacha Baron Cohen) joins the Dennit racing team. The addition of the accomplished challenger causes plenty of clashes and crashes as the gay European driver and the red necked NASCAR speedster vie for the coveted spot in the winner's circle. When the rest of the racing community turns their attention to the new recruit, Ricky is suddenly swamped with insecurities and fears that drive him to run around the track in his underwear and to stab himself in the leg with a knife. After his abnormal reactions cause the disbanding of his pit crew, he's left to rely on his mom (Jane Lynch) and his delinquent, drug-dealing dad (Gary Cole) for moral support while he finds his way back to the oval.

Over the years, Ferrell has made a name for himself deadpanning his way through a whole inventory of adult eccentrics who seemingly forgot to grow up. In Talladega Nights, he once again plays an overblown character who has a skewed sense of reality and a complete disregard for the people who helped ensure his accomplishments.

Unfortunately on this circuit, the speedway is also littered with more than the mere suggestion of illegal substances. Profanities, crude descriptive names for male anatomy, sexual activities and exaggerated stereotypes of homosexuals, racetrack personnel and alcoholic wives crowd the script along with irreverent comments about religious figures.

Although the film may appeal to the most diehard of Ferrell fans and ardent NASCAR enthusiasts, it won't take long for the audience to discover Ricky is more of a legend in his own mind than he is for the fans at the Talladega racetrack.

Discussion Ideas After The Movie

Teaching ideas and topics to discuss about Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.

Why does Ricky attach so much weight to his father’s comment about winning, even though his dad is absent for most of his life? How do Ricky’s attitudes rub off on his sons?

For more information on NASCAR drivers, tracks and standings go to

News & Views About Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby:

Canadian Movie Ratings

PG Coarse and Sexual Language.
AB PG Coarse Language, Not Recommended For Young Children
ON PG Language may offend. Not recommended for young children.
QC G Not recommended for young children.
PG Sexual content. Coarse Language.

Canadian Home Video Rating: 14A

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Details on home video releases of Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby...

The DVD release of Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby sings the praises of this movie with an almost endless refrain of bonus extras such as: commentaries by the film’s director and friends, a gag reel, deleted and extended scenes, never-before-seen footage and alternate lines not used in movie. Featurettes include: Line-o-Rama, Interviews with Ricky, Cal, and Carley, Bonus Race Footage, Will Ferrell Returns to Talladega, Daytona 500 Spot, Nascar Chase for the Nextel Cup Spot, Interviews with Jean Girard and Gregory, Walker & Texas Ranger: Montage and Outtakes, More Deleted Scenes, Ricky and Cal’s Commericals, and Ricky and Cal’s Public Service Announcement. For fans of the sport, there is also a DVD-ROM link to Audio tracks are provided in Dolby Digital 5.1 (English and French) with subtitles in English and French.

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