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Due Date
BLU-RAY disk
02.25.2011 By: Jason Adams
Due Date order download
Director:
Todd Phillips

Actors:
Robert Downey Jr
Zach Galifianakis
Michelle Monaghan

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
A man trying to make it home for the birth of his baby is forced to drive cross country with the co-pilot from Hell.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
With Robert Downey Jr., Zack Galifianakis and director Todd Phillips all at the top of their success, DUE DATE should’ve been a no-brainer home run. I have no idea how it turned out to be so ineffective.

That’s not entirely true. The blame lies with the script, which should be considerably stronger, especially since Phillips had a hand in it, fresh off the massive success of THE HANGOVER. As it stands, DUE DATE feels like a pale, less funny imitation of PLANES, TRAINS AND AUTOMOBILES. It’s not that everyone tried and failed to be funny; there just didn't seem to be that many jokes attempted at all. The set up for a good comedy is there, but none of it really delivers as strongly as it should.

Instead, the general vibe seems to be bizarre characters and off-the-wall situations that don't necessarily translate to humor, not to mention some random serious drama about absent or dead fathers that are probably relevant thematically but not comedically. From Downey’s opening monologue about a bear chewing his wife’s umbilical cord, it just feels weird and the laughs-per-minute ratio isn't high enough to justify it. Every now and then some of that oddity pays off with Galifianakis' character or Downey gutpunching a child, but a good chunk of the big swings lead to whiffs.

I've been a big fan of Zach Galifianakis since the first time I saw his Comedy Central special, before THE HANGOVER and even before OUT COLD, and if there's one redeeming factor here it's his character. While Ethan Tremblay can be a mix of annoying, stupid and weird, Galifianakis really does give it his all and isn't afraid to take things to some weird places, as well as some sympathetic places that nearly make his character tolerable when the script really doesn't want him to be. On the flip side, the usually reliable Robert Downey Jr. seems to be off his game here, coming across as a huge asshole with pretty much no redeeming characteristics. It's especially weird since the actor has made a career out of making guys like this charming and likable, but here he doesn't even seem to have chemistry with co-stars he's worked well with in the past like Michelle Monaghan (the amazing KISS KISS BANG BANG) and Jamie Foxx (THE SOLOIST).

It's a comedy so I can be somewhat forgiving of unrealistic plot points, but in DUE DATE there's so many story issues that are hard to ignore, aside from the obvious, "Why is Peter still with a guy who jerks off in front of him?!" So much of the setup feels contrived, so much conflict forced and so much of the story is unrealistic to an alarming degree, like escaping from border authorities in a stolen police car in a massively destructive chase with zero consequences, or driving all the way from the Grand Canyon with a gunshot wound in time to deliver a baby. If the film followed through or used these opportunities in a big funny way, it'd be much easier to forgive, but almost all of it is just lazy and poorly thought.

At least the masturbating French Bulldog is cute and Danny McBride's cameo is pretty funny. Everything else we'll chalk up to a missed opportunity.
THE EXTRAS
For being a fairly big hit, there's surprisingly little here. The Blu-Ray does come with a DVD and Digital Copy of the movie.

"Two and a Half Men" Scene (3:02): This full uncut version of Ethan Tremblay's appearance on the hit CBS show is horribly unfunny, just like every episode of "Two and Half Men."

Deleted Scenes (3:55): There's more annoying plugs for "Two and a Half Men" Peter and Ethan getting in to a pinching match and other things that deservedly got cut.

Action Mashup (0:30): Literally a quick montage of some of the bigger action moments cut together, in case you fell asleep during the movie.

Too Many Questions Mash Up (0:41): Another montage of Ethan's most annoying moments.

Gag Reel (6:31): Even this really isn't funny, as none of the mistakes are humorous or lead to anything the audience would find amusing. Plus, it's way too long.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
Everyone involved with DUE DATE is better than this movie. Perhaps worth a rental if you were really curious, but THE HANGOVER this is now. (The Blu-Ray is just as disappointing.)

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