Seth Green Weekend – Without a Paddle (2004) Movie Review

Director: Steven Brill

Writer: Jay Leggett, Mitch Rouse (Screenplay) Fred Wolf, Harris Goldberg, Tom Nursall (Story)

Starring: Dax Shepard, Matthew Lillard, Seth Green, Ethan Suplee, Rachel Blanchard, Ray Baker, Burt Reynolds

Plot: After their friend dies, three men decide to fulfill their childhood dream by going on a camping expedition for the lost D. B. Cooper bounty, with calamitous results.


Tagline – Three lifelong friends… One lost treasure… What could go wrong?

Runtime: 1 Hour 35 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Enjoyable

Story: Without a Paddle starts as three best friends Tom (Shepard), Jerry (Lillard) and Dan (Green) return home after the sudden death of their fourth member Billy, spending time together they remember a promise they once made when they were children about searching for D.B. Cooper Bounty.

The three head off into the wilderness following a map that Billy left them, on an adventure they couldn’t imagine, search for a treasure and learning the importance of life.

Thoughts on Without a Paddle

Characters – Jerry has become a businessman, he isn’t enjoying this career choice, he likes to surf and isn’t the most committed in remember important dates in his relationship, he must bring the guys back together for the funeral, he is on the edge of a mid-life crisis, which will get the focus of his decision making process on this adventure. Tom is the lose cannon of the friends, he has always got a story from what he has been doing in his life, while most seem to be tall tales, which often get them in trouble. Dan has become a doctor that is nervous in life, he keeps everything safe and this adventure is completely against his lifestyle, where he spends most of his time worried about what happens.

PerformancesMatthew Lillard, Seth Green and Dax Shepard are the three friends, they do have great chemistry, they play into their comedy strengths and make this movie more enjoyable with their performances.

StoryThe story follows three friends that go on an adventure in the woods in search for D.B. Cooper’s treasure in memory of their friend who passed away. This is a story that is about finding themselves, learning to overcome their fears in life, learn their place in life and making the most of the life they are given. While some of what happens is silly and plays into parodies of many films, it is an enjoyable story that shows the strength of friendship through the good times and the bad.

Adventure/ComedyThe adventure shows us how friends will need that moment in life where the can be together even through the adult struggles in life. The comedy can be silly at times, which does take away from the serious time of the story.

SettingsThe film is set in the wilderness, which sees how the different locations from the river rapids to the cannabis farm they stumble along, it plays into the fears of going into the wild.


Scene of the Movie – The treehouse of memories.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Some of the comedy.

Final Thoughts This is a fun adventure about finding yourself in life, the cast has a great chemistry only for the comedy to come off slightly short at times.

Overall: Fun Adventure.

ABC Film Challenge – Oscar Nomination – I – In Bruges (2008)

Director: Martin McDonagh

Writer: Martin McDonagh (Screenplay)

Starring: Colin Farrell, Brendan Gleeson, Ralph Fiennes, Ciaran Hinds, Zelijko Ivanek, Clemence Poesy

 

Plot: Guilt-stricken after a job gone wrong, hitman Ray and his partner await orders from their ruthless boss in Bruges, Belgium, the last place in the world Ray wants to be.


Tagline – Shoot first. Sightsee later.

Runtime: 1 Hour 47 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Brilliant Comedy

 

Story: In Bruges starts when Ray (Farrell) and Ken (Gleeson) must leave London after a job goes wrong, they must head to Bruges where they must wait for instructions from their boss. Ray hates being in Bruges he sees it has a boring horrible place, while Ken is loving the idea of being a tourist.

When Harry (Fiennes) gives Ken the next job, which is to eliminate Ray for his error, while Ray gets involved with low level criminal Chloe (Poesy). Ken must give Ray the best send off before the difficult moment of his life happens.

 

Thoughts on In Bruges

 

Characters – Ray is a hitman that has made an error on the latest job when a stray bullet kills a little boy, he is filled with guilt for the death, he hates being in Bruges and always gets himself into trouble while trying to keep a low profile. We can see by his actions just how guilty he is feeling about what happened too. Ken is the partner to Ray, mentor if you like, he bought him into the world and is the connection to the boss, he loves the sightseeing in Bruges, he is put in the difficult position of needing to eliminate his partner and doesn’t want to go through with it. Harry is the boss that just wants loose ends cleaned up, seeing that Ray made a mistake, he ends up needing to get his hands dirty if he wants to get rid of the problems. Chloe is a dealer working around a movie set, she wins Ray’s heart giving him the only beacon of light in his life.

PerformancesColin Farrell shows us here just how good he can be in a mix of comedy and unsettling behaviour that he finds himself needing to put his character through. Brendan Gleeson is wonderful to watch too, while Ralph Fiennes proves once again that he can become a full-blown psychotic character with ease. The rest of the cast do add to the comedy we go through during the film.

StoryThe story follows two hitmen in hiding after a job goes wrong while their boss decides what to do next, which is kill Ray for his mistake. We get to see how mixed the two are about being in Bruges with one loving and other hating it which plays into the tourist vibes we are meant to feel with the trip. We get religious elements in this film too which play into just where the two will go once their lives are over and what punishment they should face if they are caught or killed. This is a clever story because it shows us just how each character plays an important part to the final outcome of the film too.

Comedy/CrimeThe comedy in the film comes from the reactions of just being in Bruges, they we add in the reaction to seeing a dwarf not wanting to offend him and ends up making things worse. The crime side of the film shows us just the world the three main characters are from being hitmen.

SettingsThe film is set in Bruges which is a beautiful city, the setting shows us just how they can play into the comedy in the film because of the men’s reactions to the location.


Scene of the Movie –
The chase.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The Canadian side of the film.

Final ThoughtsThis is a fun dark comedy that isn’t afraid to hold back on just where the jokes will come from.

 

Overall: Deliciously Dark Comedy.

Rating