Will Preston

If Seth Rogan was an alien

by on Mar.30, 2011, under Films, Review

I’m not sure if I like Simon Pegg and Nick Frost rubbing elbows and knees with all those Hollywood big shot types that much. Well done to the pair though, but they’re leaving a big hole in British television comedy that’s bound to get filled up with more shite starring James Corden. And no one needs that. What people do need are more programs like Spaced and a third big screen outing with Edgar Wright. But since Mr Wright also seems to be busy in America with the upcoming Tin Tin film and the (questionable) Nintendo wank that was Scott Pilgrim, we will have to keep an eye on Pegg and Frost for more comedy in the meantime.

I can almost picture him with a ginger afro

Paul, written by both Pegg and Frost, is their newest venture in America and features them mucking in with the Judd Apatow crowd. Ginger Candian meta-slacker Seth Rogan plays the voice of the films titular character, who ironically is best described as an alien playing Seth Rogan. Pegg and Frost are two nerds visiting Comic Con in America and doing a tour of the various UFO hotspots in a typical RV. The three meet up after a car accident on a long road in the middle of nowhere and thus an E.T.–esque escapade ensues with stock bad guys being provided by Jason Bateman and (bizarrely enough) Sigourney Weaver. Along the way to get Paul back to his mothership, Pegg has a close encounter with Kristen Wigg playing the role of a half blind bible basher, complete with gun toting redneck father to boot. Her theories on evolution and life outside the earth are rudely debunked with the appearance of a wise cracking alien emerging from the RV’s toilet. This leads to them kidnapping her, of course, in case she spills the beans about Paul.

Crappest Dalek impressions I've ever seen!

Bateman’s cold Agent Zoil is a bit of a far cry role from his usual repertoire of laid back characters that he’s better known for, but he pulls it off well, providing you will your disbelief to suspend that little bit harder. Zoil’s second in command agents include Bill Hader and Joe Lo Truglio, who are inept to the extent of acting like a couple of well dressed man children. The odd thing here is that in a previous film, Superbad, Hader and Rogen played a couple of childish police officers and now we have Hader reprising his role whilst Rogen swaps his role for their target. Anyway, where was I? Ah yes! The humour of the film feels closer to that of a Judd Apatow film than anything Pegg and Frost have ever done, but there are still some great lines that could have been deleted dialogue from Spaced. At times, it seems like some of it was ad libbed just right. However, the jokes don’t tend to go far past various sci fi references and typical laddish fart jokes, but it still provides as long as you’re comfortable with this. Some of the sci fi refrences in the film did surprise me quite a bit, showing that Pegg and Frost are extremely comfortable playing a pair of nerds whilst writing a film for nerds.

Paul is probably the most mainstream that Simon Pegg and Nick Frost have been in since their work with Edgar Wright, but they haven’t run out of steam yet. Now could you guys please make the final film of the Blood and Ice Cream Trilogy?!

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