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Due Date

Submitted by admin on November 10, 2010 – 4:34 pmNo Comment
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Due Date proves two things to me. One, that Todd Phillips can actually make a comedy that I think is funny, and two, that Zach Galifianakis as the new go-to guy for comic roles may not be a fluke.

Phillips directed Old School and The Hangover; neither film a particular favorite of mine. Yet you cannot knock the success of Hangover with its worldwide gross of nearly half a billion, and a sequel due out next summer, plus the cache that’s made Phillips able to call his own shots. Likewise, Galifianakis was below the radar as far as second banana characters go before The Hangover. Now he’s the new Danny McBride, which is apt since McBride plays a bit role in Due Date while Galifianakis steals the show as one of two leads, along with always reliable Robert Downey, Jr.

Due Date works despite being as unbelievable as, say, The Hangover. You know those road movies where the protags have to drive across the nation because they can’t fly – Midnight Run, Rain Man? Take that premise and put two characters that cannot stand each other in tight proximity for a couple of hours.

Whatever gags John Hughes left out of Planes, Trains and Automobiles, Phillips adds them to the often hilarious ingredients on display in Due Date. There’s a nice sense of composition to many of the outdoor shots. Both Downey and Galifianakis offer annoying character traits but they exude the right amount of real emotion to make you want to give them another chance. Jamie Foxx, Downey’s co-star in The Soloist, and Michelle Monaghan, Downey’s foil in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, provide solid supporting turns.

- Michael Bergeron

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