Tenth-Review-Extravaganza Part 2: "Paul" (2011)!

Paul (2011)
Directed by: Greg Mottola
Running time: 104 minutes approx.

Hello all, and welcome to the conclusion of the very timid/pointless but extremely and undoubtedly awesome event of my “Tenth-Review-Extravaganza”! For those of you only now tuning in, basically this week was the posting of my tenth ever review on this blog and to celebrate I decided we’d have two reviews this week so as you dedicated readers could have another film to either agree with me or hate me not liking. I know it’s not really much in the way of a big event, I mean all I did was “hey, let’s post two things this week instead of just one! That’s amazing, and such a once in a lifetime thing!” but shut up, I liked doing it and I’m sure you liked reading it too if you still here at this point so let’s just move on to the review!

Now Showing this week is the latest film from the British comedy duo that is actors/writers Simon Pegg and Nick Frost called Paul. Now the people I mentioned above who enjoy hating me for ragging on a film that they really like are going to be disappointed after I write this next statement: Paul is awesome. It’s really good and you all owe it to yourselves to see it; especially if you grew up with/are fans of films such as Star Wars, Aliens, Star Trek, Back to the Future etc. The film is littered with excellently timed and placed references to all the classic sci-fi/adventure films and TV shows of the last forty years that are gut wrenchingly funny (an Aliens reference involving Sigourney Weaver was my favourite!).

The film revolves around two British geeks named Graeme (Pegg) and Clive (Frost) who are road tripping around America to attend the San Diego “Comic-Con” festival and to visit famous UFO sighting spots. Whilst on their travels, they happen to run into an alien named Paul (voiced by Seth Rogan) just outside of Area 51. Paul has escaped the facility and is on the run and he asks if Graeme and Clive will take him to where he wants to go. What follows is a road trip of epic proportions with a fantastic guest star cast featuring Jason Bateman, Jeffory Tambor and (as mentioned earlier) Sigourney Weaver. The film is essentially a comedy but does contain some very poignant and moving moments, and that’s really what Pegg and Frost are really good at: making us laugh but also playing such serious roles on top of that.

Granted, Paul is not in the same league as the other films that these two have worked on (Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz) but it comes pretty damn close. What’s missing, for me, is director Edgar Wright. I could not possibly pinpoint what it is that Edgar Wright brings to his films, but his signature is unique and unmatched in terms of reference comedy. He has this uncanny ability to recreate the feeling of a moment from a previous film down to the last detail. Don’t get me wrong, director Greg Mottola does a fantastic job with Paul but I was disappointed that Wright hadn’t signed on to do the job and instead went off to make the decent yet tiring film Scott Pilgram vs. the World (that’s right internet, come get me!).

I suppose I may as well wrap things up here because I can’t say too much more about Paul without spoiling some of the jokes and plot twists so I’ll just say thing: go see it. The humour is brilliantly written and so well timed and acted; on top of that, there is a brilliant “on the run from the law” story filled with many twists and turns that can be quite surprising. And the use of all the references is fantastic. Perhaps I thought that cause I’m a bit of a geek myself however, if one is familiar with any science fiction films/franchises from the last forty years then you will enjoy them because you never see them coming! Again, go see Paul, you won’t regret it.

And so concludes my Tenth-Review-Extravaganza! I will now again like to thank my readers for sticking with me this far, I really appreciate it. I love writing these blog reviews but there would be no point to it if no one was reading them so once again, thank you. See you next time!

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