When it comes to british comedy, nobody does it quite like the hilarious Simon Pegg/Nick Frost duo. After the massive success of both “Shaun Of The Dead” and “Hot Fuzz”, the dudes are back in one of the funniest movies I’ve seen so far this year. In “Paul”, they play two british nerds on vacation in America. Their first stop on their list is San Diego, where they check out the geek festival also known as Comic-Con. Their journey continues on to Area 51, where they accidentally pick up an alien named Paul (a hilarious Seth Rogen) who brings them on an insane road trip. It seems that for the past 60 years, Paul has been hanging out at a top secret military base. And when he discovered that he’s been a prisoner the entire time, he decided to escape the compound and hop on the first vehicle out of town. Now it’s up to Pegg and Frost to make sure he returns safely to his mother ship before it’s too late. Think “Close Encounters” meets “Superbad”.
Director Greg Mottola, in for Edgard Wright (who handled the first two Pegg/Frost epics), makes the most of his zany cast, including Jason Bateman and Bill Hader as Men In Black agents. The story is straightforward enough, and won’t really hit you by surprise, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. It doesn’t pretend to be anything more than it really is, and I liked that about it. Now if you’re a die hard sci-fi fan like I am, then the humor in “Paul” will definitely appeal to you. The in-jokes are obvious and funny, while the characters will at least be instantly relatable. On the other hand, if you’ve never been comfortable with science fiction, then the story might not hit the same notes. This is a movie that targets the geek niche. The people involved in this are all part of this culture, and they make the most it. The result is one hell of a comedy, and possibly the funniest I’ve seen in quite a while. Time will tell if the Pegg/Frost duo has what it takes to become one of the great screen double act, but right now, they’re three for three. I for one, cannot wait for their next project.
Categories: The Twenty-First Century