Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXIV, No. 45
 
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
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Cinema

For more movie summaries, see Kam’s Kapsules.

DARLING, HOW SWEET OF YOU TO CALL: Sarah (Michelle Monaghan) receives a call from her husband Peter (Robert Downey, Jr., not shown) who is on his way to the airport in Atlanta, Georgia. He is reassuring his nine-months pregnant wife that he will be back home in time before the baby comes. Famous last words! To find out if he can keep his promise, see the movie.

Due Date: Downey and Galifianakis Co-Star in Road Comedy

Kam Williams

Peter Highman (Robert Downey, Jr.) has been away in Atlanta on business, however, he’s reassured his pregnant wife Sarah, (Michelle Monaghan), — who’s close to the end of her ninth month — that he’ll be back in Los Angeles in time to be there when their baby is born. Just before checking out of his hotel, he gives her a call to let her know how much he loves her and to tell her that he’ll be home soon.

However, upon arriving at the airport a comedy of errors ensues which makes it hard for Peter to keep his promise. First, his cab is sideswiped by a dilapidated station wagon that is driven by a drunk driver. In the ensuing confusion, Peter accidentally grabs the carry-on bag of the drunken passenger, (Zack Galifianakis), who was also in the station wagon.

Then, as Peter passes through security, he is detained for questioning because of a marijuana pipe and drug paraphernalia that were discovered in his carry-on bag. On the plane, when he confronts the real owner of the bag about the contraband, they both are arrested and taken off the plane by a federal air marshal for creating a disturbance.

When their names are added to the “No-Fly” list, the two strangers grudgingly agree to share a rented car in order to drive to Los Angeles. However, can an architect and a flamboyant slacker, who now hate each other, drive clear across the country in the same automobile without driving each other crazy?

That is the proposition posed by Due Date, an unlikely road movie which brazenly borrows the basic plot from Planes, Trains & Automobiles, the 1987 film that co-starred Steve Martin and John Candy. But where that hilarious John Hughes film served up a wholesome brand of humor suitable for the whole family, Due Date relies on profane shock situations that are definitely not family fare.

The film’s prurient tone is reminiscent of its director Todd Philips’ earlier film The Hangover, which also featured Zack Galifianakis. Instead of engaging in pedophilia, in this movie Zack’s character shares an intimate moment with a dog. Regrettably, despite their desperate efforts to entertain, he and Robert Downey, Jr. fail to generate any chemistry between their characters or laughs on their trip to Los Angeles.

An offensive movie of no redeeming social value which, I learned in law school, is the Supreme Court’s definition of obscene.

Poor (0 stars). Rated R for profanity, sexuality, and drug use. Running time: 95 Minutes. Distributor: Warner Brothers.

For more movie summaries, see Kam’s Kapsules.

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