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T500FC, 456th: Paul (Greg Mottola, 2011)

March.7.2011

Lucky for Greg Mottola, the director, his few films have been on a high and low already. Everyone knows that Superbad were his first hit in mainstream. He tried to follow it up with Adventureland but, personally, it felt short, though critics liked this. And right now, he is probably riding high with this sci-fi comedy, Paul. Much more to everybody’s delight, we get to see the Simon Pegg-Nick Frost duo once again. This time, without the help of Edgar Wright, Pegg’s writing skills, along with Frost, was still able to grab my attention and sheer delight combined.

In what seemed to be a geek movie, the film begins with Pegg and Frost riding high in the events of Comic-con. Aside from them having a liking for geek stuff, they also happen to do a side trip to the U.F.O. sites in the U.S. And lucky for them, they meet Paul, in one crazy occasion, an alien. Paul, having a very upbeat personality, is looking for a way to go home and the duo agrees to help the extra-terrestrial. And in what seemed to look like a sci-fi version of a road trip, they encounter various instances that alleviate, or not, to their destination much more with the agents that are hunting them down.

Despite having mixed and average reviews, this is one of the films that can be watched over and over and over again. I instantly remembered the film Evolution when I saw how the film was created. I was even having a lot of doubts, with the fact that this was a love letter to Steven Spielberg; afraid in a sense that this might contain the recent wave of film rip-offs.

Luckily for us, Pegg, et al, was able to pull through. Giving the alien a little bit, or more than you can chew, attitude was what made the film as a whole. I mean, personally, Pegg and Frost was actually ok already, but to my sheer delight, the alien acted out as the backbone of the film, not overshadowing the whole movie, which is usually the trend for alien films.

The rest of the cast was undeniably good too, though quite tiring in a few but it was ok. We have Jason Bateman as the highly regarded and gun-poking secret agent. We also have a few SNL stars such as Kirsten Wiig, the bayou girl who found the truth and ended up as a person who wants to sin, and Bill Hader, one of the smartly ignorant agents. Jane Lynch was fairly memorable in the bar and it was just awesome to see Sygourney Weaver in an alien film. Remember the Alien trilogy?

I believe that the film people can still create more of these films. Geeks unite to such type of cinema. It might turn out too mainstream-y to some but the fun is always in that. I am probably going to watch it again, I didn’t know that an alien-themed road trip is fun as I’ve been so used to the serious side of it.

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