I count myself a fan of director Todd Phillips. Sure he’s had his hits and misses, but when he hits, he hits big. Phillips’ last film The Hangover seemingly came out of nowhere, yet with no big-name stars, it went onto gross over $450 million worldwide and launched Galifianakis’ career into the stratosphere. Phillips’ eagerly anticipated new film, Due Date, is out in theaters today and pairs up Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis in a wacky road movie with a dash of pathos, Trains, Planes, and Automobiles-style.
What did you think of the movie? Did you laugh as hard as you did at The Hangover? Did you cry? Hit the jump and share some of your thoughts. As usual, SPOILERS are allowed after the jump and in the comments.
Due Date is like a 90-minute version of Between Two Ferns, with all the laughs, unevenness, discomfort, and lack of character development that that entails. Instead of a relationship, we’re given a series of increasingly implausible set pieces, all while Galifianakis plays a nearly-unhinged version of his Hangover character. It’s a fun romp and good for a few laughs, but it’s one of those movies that you’ll forget moments after leaving the theater, even though it aspires to be more than that.
Neither Galifianakis nor Downey Jr. play anything close to a likable character but their combined charisma is off the charts, which renders them bearable. Nonetheless, their friendship blossoms with the smoothness of a rusty, diesel-powered snowblower, and as a result, its concluding beats feel completely unearned.
While I enjoyed the film, Due Date seemed to be reaching for something deeper than The Hangover. With a cast this good, it had a right to shoot for the moon, but in the end, it fails at its goal of making us care meaningfully about the fate of its characters.
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