Due Date (Todd Phillips, 2010)
Even if this blog is mostly about Classic Films and the completion of lists of Great films and Great directors, I still keep in mind two things much needed for a movie buff. To watch contemporary films and to dig into his favorite genre.
Due Date is a comedy directed by Todd Phillips (The Hangover & The Hangover Part II) starring Robert Downey Jr. (Iron Man I & II, The Avengers) and Zack Galifianakis (The Hangover & The Hangover Part II). Needless to say that it is a very capable team that was running between the successes of the two Hangover films. Phillips and Galifianakis were still on the good vibe of their reinvigorated breath to the guy movie. They embarked on Due Date a Road movie exploiting the odd couple terrain.
Peter (Robert Downey Jr.) needs to get to Los Angeles by the end of the week departing from Atlanta because his wife is scheduled to deliver their first born child. Getting in the way, Ethan Tremblay (Galifianakis) a lunatic television actor wannabe who just lost his father get him banished from flying. They have to get to LA by car together because Peter lost his baggage and his wallet in the airplane while getting expelled. They’ll have to tolerate each other and get over their natural temper to get in time in LA.
While being another turn on the buddy flick à la Planes, Trains, and Automobiles and The Odd Couple, the dynamic of Downey Jr. and Galifianakis is interesting. Even if, at first it is not that convincing, the two actors looked like they actually really appreciate working together.
The plot also has interesting twists and without being completely stupid or absurd, the characters have a humanity that most lesser comedies don’t have and that makes them too one-dimensional and unnatural in the story. The presence of Robert Downey Jr. also brings quality in the acting on the screen and elevates the part of Peter. The straight face and high temper role is well suited for him and it gives the most hilarious moments of the movie.
Far from being the best movie of 2010, Due Date is an efficient and quite enjoyable comedy that demonstrates another facet of Todd Phillips’ filmaking. The fan of comedy that I am was satisfied and even if it is not at the level of The Hangover, it is still better than the average comedy out there.