DUE DATE Review

The inevitable question will be if 'Due Date' is a worthy successor to 'The Hangover' and though it may not be as consistently funny as last years surprise hit, I am also writing this after only viewing it once. And we all know how it goes with certain comedic films, the more you see them, the more you pick up on little things that are funny that you didn't notice the first time. I probably did this with 'The Hangover' and just don't remember it. I know I loved it after a first viewing, but I am positive I found much more to love since owning it. 'The Hangover' didn't have any pre-conceived pressure on it either, as 'Due Date' is expected to be just as funny and probably make almost as much money. This time director Todd Phillips isn't making stars, he is hiring them. And in what may be the best pairing ever, Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis create a couple that is the entire reason to see this film. There are other nice things about the film and a slew of great cameos, especially Juliette Lewis and Danny McBride who lets the offensive swing and receives laughs out of the park.Having the pleasure to sit back and watch these two leads, who are very opposite but jut as engaging actors go back and forth with each other is no doubt the most fun and hilarious time we will have at the theaters this year. It has been a slow one for comedies, there were some that just didn't measure up and while I would place 'The Other Guys' as a close second, it didn't go all out as this one does. 'Due Date' as you may have heard is pretty much a modern day 'Planes, Trains and Automobiles' but with more vulgarity. This is true, that is the basic plot. Downey's Peter Highman has to get back to LA for the birth of his first child and after an incident on the plane with Galifianakis' Ethan Tremblay (Chase) they are both put on the no fly list. Peter loses his wallet, Ethan gets a rental car, thus they must make the trip together. And from that point on, anything you can imagine happening going wrong probably does. Phillips is a master at documenting the odd relationships between men and in putting the ill tempered Peter with an over-the-top wannabe actor like Ethan we are placed in situations that bring out the worst in one and the make apparent how oblivious the other is to everything going on around him. There is something to be said for a man who pleasures himself in front of another with no sense of how wrong it is or the fact that his dog is able to copy him. In saying that, it is clear Galifianakis put a lot of thought into how to make his character as ridiculous as possible and though he somewhat riffs off his 'Allen' persona, he takes things in a different direction all together and proves he's not a one-note comedian. It is also good to see Downey in a straight up, balls out comedy. He delivers every line and insult with such grace and elegance it is impossible not to laugh at how mean he is. At one point in the film he is reduced to a heavily induced drug state and allows his character a little break from being so high-strung and angry and it makes not only for a serious story development, but serves as a highlight in an already very funny and ridiculous movie. So, is it as good as 'The Hangover' the answer is simply no. That film is a milestone in my generations lives, as 'Animal House' or 'Fast Times' is to ones before us, and it the level at which we hold it will never be able to be surpassed, which makes me fear for its sequel, but had this precedence not been set for 'Due Date' would I think it was hilarious? Yes, in fact I probably would have loved it more had I never seen 'The Hangover'. It is what it is though and 'Due Date' certainly has enough funny moments of its own to earn funniest film of 2010. At least in my eyes. I know Mr. Tremblay would agree.