Monday, November 22, 2010

Guest Blogger: Roxanne Wilder

Today's guest blogger is Roxanne Wilder, Entertainment Reporter & Movie Critic for And what is that exactly? Why, it's just your #1 spot for movie reviews, entertainment news and celebrity interviews, tailored to those making social plans. Not sure if the new flick about zombies taking over a nuclear submarine is a good choice to see on a first date with someone? Roxanne will tell you (hint: it is, if the date is with me). It's where you can get the inside scoop so you can make informed entertainment choices and ensure that your date nights are successful (well, I think you will probably have to put forth a little effort to make sure that happens, but you get the idea).
Here's Roxanne's review of "Due Date", the comedy smash starring Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis that's in theaters right now.

Director Todd Phillips hit it out of the park with his blockbuster comedy, “Hangover”. It's the kind of film you watch and when you hear a funny line, you think, "I've got to remember that and make it part of my repertoire of funny things to say," but before you can commit the joke to memory, an even funnier line is delivered. That being said, Phillips recent project, “Due Date”, includes moments that are as funny as “Hangover's” gut-splitting scenes, but it fails to keep that tempo throughout the film. It's your garden variety buddy love movie pairing Robert Downey Jr.'s character, Peter Highman, and Zach Galifianakis', Ethan Tremblay, on an unplanned road trip from Atlanta to L.A. (so Peter can get there on time to witness the birth of his first child) after Ethan unwittingly entices Peter into using the words 'bomb' and 'terrorist' on the plane, and the duo are abruptly taken off of the flight.

I never doubted that Downey Jr.'s and Galifianakis' performances would be anything less than stellar. Downey plays a neurotic, straight-laced dad-to-be, and I bought every second of it, except when Peter said, "I've never done a drug in my life." Riiiiiight. (That line snapped me back to reality, and I had a flashback to a Downey Jr. mug shot.) For Galifianakis, the pressure must have been on after playing the memorable comedic character, Alan, in “Hangover.” But Ethan is every bit as simultaneously annoying and affable.

Comedy scriptwriters, as of late, are inclined to infuse a story that the viewer is anticipating will be a laugh-a-thon with moments that are sad/heartwarming/endear-you-to-the-characters. It works well in romantic comedies (think “Life As We Know It”) and dysfunctional family comedies (“Little Miss Sunshine”), but I didn’t buy some of the contrived sappiness that “Due Date” served me. About two thirds of the way into the film and after one two many “woe is me I had a tough childhood” or “I miss my deceased parent” lines, I started doing the math on how many more miles they had to cover: “Okay, if they’re at the Grand Canyon now, they’ve got about eight hours left to get to L.A. in real time… how about in movie time?” In other words, get to the hospital already and wrap this baby up.

The big question that Disaster Date Night loves to answer for you --- Do you want to take a date to see this movie? In most cases, yes. Guys, I wouldn't qualify it as a first date movie if your date seems to error on the prissy side. The gratuitous masturbation scene (something Hollywood can't seem to live without in comedies --- a trend that caught on after Ben Stiller's, Ted, made the most of his byproduct by using it as hair gel in “Something About Mary”) is something I could have lived without. There are certain things I don't want to picture many people doing, including Zach Galifianakis, and now, thanks to “Due Date”, I have that image in my head. One of the most humorous scenarios in the film pertained to Jamie Fox's character's close “friendship” with Peter's wife. The set-up kept you wondering until the end of the film “who the baby daddy?” Ladies, if you've got any of those issues with your man (in other words, if your child's paternity is in question), this film might open up some old wounds. Skip it. Overall, “Due Date” satisfied me the way a comedy should but didn't leave me with a post-viewing gratifying stomachache from laughing like “Hangover” did.

No comments: