Roger Ebert, who once wrote an X-rated movie titled Beyond the Valley of the Dolls, says that he sat through Step Brothers , starring Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly, not laughing but cringing at the dirty language. "I'm sure I've seen movies with more extreme language than Step Brothers , but here it seems to serve no purpose other than simply to exist. In its own tiny way, it lowers the civility of our civilization." But Kyle Smith in the New York Post had no such misgivings about the film, praising Ferrell, Reilly and director Adam McKay, for consistently "trying new situations." For Smith the film amounted to "the funniest film I've seen this year." Stephen Hunter in the Washington Post is equally enthusiastic, writing that the plot recipe "works in spades." Ty Burr in the Boston Globe takes a middle seat between those condemning the film and those raving about it, writing that it "is crudely funny, which means that sometimes it's crudely hilarious and more often it's just crude."