Teen Review: ‘Due Date’
Stillborn Comedy From the Director of ‘The Hangover’
Friday, November 5, 2010
Nothing sucks more than finding out a hilarious trailer is just a booby trap to a boring sappy film. Say hello to "Due Date" (opening November 5 throughout San Diego).
When I saw the trailer for "Due Date" I laughed. When I saw the film, not so much. So you’re better off just watching the trailer over and over to get some laughs, right? Well that's the case with "Due Date." But even though the movie was irritably clichéd, I couldn’t help but laugh at Zach Galifianakis' character, Ethan Tremblay.
The film opens with Peter Highman (Robert Downey, Jr.) on a tight schedule because he and his wife (Michelle Monaghan) have a baby due in just a few days. Only thing is they are on opposite ends of the country. But a quick plane trip will fix that, right? Wrong. That's because Peter meets Ethan. After an unfortunate mishap on a plane, Peter and Ethan end up on the no-fly list. Having forgotten all his identification, credit cards, and cash on the plane Peter reluctantly accepts Ethan’s generous offer of letting him ride across country with him. Basically, he has no choice if he wants to be in L.A. for the birth of his baby. On the way to California, Peter and Ethan get to know each other very intimately (maybe too intimately).
In my opinion, the movie as a whole isn’t worth the 11 bucks it costs to go watch it in theaters. There’s no pizzazz and that's about all I can say about the film. The plot isn’t that great, the cast is mediocre, and the presentation is unexceptional. What I’m trying say is that we, as viewers, deserve something fresh to view in a comedy! Obviously I can’t tell you what's missing because I'm not a filmmaker. But I want a filmmaker to surprise me with something and when they do I’ll make sure to point it out. In "Due Date," the plot leaves you wanting more but not in the good way.
Not everything was bad though. Zach did an excellent job in his role as Ethan Tremblay, the ambitious wannabe actor. His role might be the one thing that saves this film from being just another cheesy failure. But it brings up an interesting question: If Zach keeps appearing in all these films as nothing more than the hilarious guy that saves the film, will we eventually get tired of Galifianakis’ appearance? Since 2009 he’s been in "The Hangover," "Youth in Revolt," "Dinner for Schmucks," "It’s Kind of a Funny Story," and now "Due Date" and he's playing basically the same character in all these films. So I’m pretty sure that by 2011 when "The Hangover 2" comes out, we’ll be tired of Mr. Galifianakis’ face. Casting agencies need to find more funny people to cast! Too much of a good thing can be a bad thing.
I can’t say much for Robert Downey, Jr. He’s not that funny of a guy, which isn’t bad. He provides a contrast to Galifianakis’character, which helped the film a lot. The difference between the two makes them an entertaining pair. Unfortunately the film in its entirety didn’t cut it for me. I’d rather see Downey in the upcoming "Avengers" movie.
All in all "Due Date" (rated R for language, drug use and sexual content) couldn’t have been helped. I’m sure most people will enjoy it just because it has funny moments, but it was just too formulaic for me. I want to see something different in movies. It’ll do for a fun father and son get-together. Maybe children will ask where their fathers were when they were born and that’ll bring up family stories that will be a lot more interesting than this movie. But that's about it for me.
--Jesus Gomez recently graduated from Mount Miguel High School and would like to pursue a career as a writer or film critic.
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