‘Hit And Run’ refreshing and ingenious romantic comedy (IANS Movie Review)

September 2nd, 2012 - 6:11 pm ICT by IANS  

Film: “Hit And Run”; Cast: Dax Shepard, Kristen Bell, Bradley Cooper; Directors: David Palmer and Dax Shepard; Rating: 4/5

One of the delights of life is to sometimes unexpectedly behold a little-known gem that thrills you with its ingenuity. Usually one experiences this in an old film. To find this in a film playing in the theatres now is sheer luck.

“Hit And Run” is one such film made by a passionate bunch of people, which but for a relatively lesser known cast and bad luck of not having a better studio patronising it, would have been the toast of the town.

Under witness-protection in small town America, Charlie (Dax Shepard) falls in love with Annie (Kirsten Bell). When she gets a new job in Los Angeles, Charlie decides to drop her off despite the possible dangers. Annie’s jealous ex-lover not only follows them, but gets both his cop brother and Charlie’s arch-enemy Alex (Bradley Cooper) on their tail.

What follows is a hilarious ride where a doctorate in non-violent conflict resolution is paired with a former bank robber trying desperately to control himself, a nutty ex-lover crossing path with an accident prone federal marshal with a gay cop and his nerdy partner and a crazy gangster in hot pursuit through rural America.

“Hit and Run” literally hits and runs over you with its ingenious and delightful humour. Be warned though for you can’t expect the over the top, outlandish comedy Hollywood is known for.

Instead you have a very refined comedy riding on some very sophisticated writing and neatly conceptualised sequences and well thought out characters and their idiosyncrasies.

Amongst all the good things about the film, the best are its writing and romance. The writing of the romance is so real and observant of couple’s mannerisms of debate and fights, that it is surprising to see it on screen. That the lead pair of Dax and Kirsten are real life couples, perhaps helps the believability of their love.

More than commerce, the film is a work of sheer passion where Dax Shepard not only plays the lead but is also the writer, co-director, co-producer and co-editor of the film. He and David Palmer, who have co-directed a forgettable film before, refine their creative partnership in this.

The sophistication of the film might prove to be a drawback at the box office, as viewers expecting a typical comedy might be surprised by it and not many pleasantly so. However, those who enjoy a good sprinkling of intelligence in their comedies will have a rocking time.

A perfect movie to go with your partner as it mixes and satiates the urges of both parties involved - the need for romance and the urge for masculine cars and thrilling action.

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