Movie Review: ‘Hit and Run’ – Iowa State Daily

Hit and Run
Gabriel Stoffa

If you like movies that play out like a 1980s plot, then “Hit and Run” is going to be up your alley; by the way, I dig them.
“Hit and Run” falls into a category that isn’t used often enough: romantic-action-comedy. Maybe what makes these sorts of movies work is the fact they aren’t done too often. Well, fine, they are done often enough, but those examples tend to screw up balancing the three genres evenly while still using all the elements at the same time. Usually, rom-action-com has some component timed up without following properly with the other two aspects to keep the fun going.
The script is predictable but formulaic enough to work. Along the way, a generous amount of simple laughs and some shock comedy appear to keep the love story from getting too mushy. And just when a scene would start to drag, drop or lose its oumphta, action commences in a manner not too outlandish to make it completely superfluous.
The cast get plenty of nods for laughter: Tom Arnold plays a flustered U.S. marshal, and I was actually enjoying it; though I might have a soft spot for him since we are from the same small town in Iowa. Kristen Bell as the damsel caught in the middle of trouble worked fine. Dax Sheppard as the good guy with a bad past surprised me. Sheppard isn’t someone you see in a lot of movies because he doesn’t bring anything spectacular to the screen that you cannot already get from a bigger star. Luckily for him, he was the writer and a director, so it isn’t too hard to make yourself look good; I mean come on, it worked for Zach Braff in “Garden State,” and Sheppard does look and act similarly to Braff.
Michael Rosenbaum does a turn as an overprotective, stalker-ish ex-boyfriend that makes you laugh because it’s a character you know in real life. Though I want more badass roles for Rosenbaum, thanks to watching him in “Smallville” as Lex, I am content with some comedy instead. Kristen Chenoweth comes in to play the same sort of role that she usually plays, which isn’t bad, and makes for a tingle of funny in the movie. Adding to the cameos, David Koechner plays a South-will-rise-again redneck as per his typecast, and even Beau Bridges appears to play his classic yet marvelous tough-but-loving father role. Bradley Cooper‘s character is a bad boy who is not really too bad if you look at it from the perspective of criminal being okay. Yes, it’s a stretch, but bad guys who aren’t psychopaths tend to be pretty loveable.
Basically, everyone plays a cookie-cutter role they are well-familiar with, which is what gives the movie that great 1980s feel. I want to complain about how the plot hardly develops or how quickly things escalate to unimpressive conclusions or even how the movie doesn’t really have closure (just the temporary conclusion of what was happening), but I won’t. I won’t complain because it worked. I sat the whole hour and a half and just enjoyed the movie without analyzing it while it went.
My advice is that if you have a date coming up, check out “Hit and Run.” It has all the elements necessary to please anyone in the audience but without going too far or making you think much. It was just pleasant. I really expect the outtakes on the DVD to be a great time due to the past outtakes from movies I’ve seen from the individual members of the cast.
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