Review: Paul (2011)

Paul is a science fiction comedy film written by Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. The film stars Simon Pegg (Burke and Hare, Star Trek, Hot Fuzz), Nick Frost(The Boat That Rocked, Hot Fuzz, Shaun Of The Dead), Seth Rogen (Knocked Up, Observe & Report, The Green Hornet), Jason Bateman (Hancock, Extract, Juno) and Kristen Wiig (MacGruber, Whip It!, Adventureland). The film was directed by Greg Minolta (Adventureland and Superbad).

Paul also has an ensemble support cast of Bill Hader, Jane Lynch, Jeffrey Tambor and Sigourney Weaver.

Simon Pegg and Nick Frost (Hot Fuzz, Shaun of the Dead) reunite for the comedy adventure Paul as two sci-fi geeks whose pilgrimage takes them to America’s UFO heartland. While there, they accidentally meet an alien who brings them on an insane road trip that alters their universe forever. For the past 60 years, an alien named Paul (voiced by Seth Rogen) has been hanging out at a top-secret military base. For reasons unknown, the space-traveling smart ass decides to escape the compound and hop on the first vehicle out of town-a rented RV containing Earthlings Graeme Willy (Pegg) and Clive Gollings (Frost). Chased by federal agents and the fanatical father of a young woman that they accidentally kidnap, Graeme and Clive hatch a fumbling escape plan to return Paul to his mother ship. And as two nerds struggle to help, one little green man might just take his fellow outcasts from misfits to intergalactic heroes.

Pegg and Frost deliver another geeky bromance of a film uniquely to there style. The on screen chemistry between them two is always good and they play off each other so well – and for obvious reasons. It’s ultimately a feel good movie which is very funny. I really enjoy the Pegg/Frost double act and I wasn’t disappointed.

Seth Rogen adds another layer to this comedy film with his own ‘Rogeness’ to it. It works and he gets some great funny lines. I feel it works and the choice of Rogen wasn’t a let down. Seth Rogen isn’t a stranger to being in geeky sci-fi inspired comedy films as he made an appearance in Fanboys. Also, most of his characters seem to have a background knowledge of such interests like in Knocked Up.

Kristen Wiig and Jason Bateman complete the main supporting cast. Kristen Wiig is the love interest in the film. She’s a bit of a religious nut who condemns the belief of creationism – that’s until she see’s Paul! I dunno how this angle will go down in America but luckily in England we have a sense of humour. Apart from this Wiig is also very funny, especially when her character is loosened up. Jason Bateman wasn’t acting out of his range and always does well in these supporting roles. He portrays the ruthless Agent spot on, with added humour as well.

The film was directed by Greg Minolta who has worked with both Kristen Wiig and Seth Rogen in Adventureland and Superbad respectively. Usually when you hear Pegg and Frost you usually associate Edgar Wright but Minolta does a decent job – certainly not his best however.

I enjoyed the film more than I though. I found it very funny and could tell Pegg and Frost enjoyed writing it. It has great subtle sci-fi references from Aliens,PredatorsX-FilesStar Trek and Star Wars. The film will please the geek in you but there’s enough for everyone else to enjoy. Think of the film as an R rated E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial with Superbad jokes for which I enjoyed a lot. Gonna give it 4/5.


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