Paul – A Review

Shaun of the Dead was one of the few genuine surprises i’ve had in my years of going to the cinema. I didn’t really think a rom-com-zom would be for me, but i loved it. it was hilarious, and the chemistry between Simon Pegg and Nick Frost was fantastic. Then came Hot Fuzz. It didn’t quite hit the heights of it’s predecessor, but i laughed a great deal none the less, and it was a cracking homage to action films everywhere. Now the third Frost and Pegg collaboration is Paul, which sees our duo accompanied by Seth Rogan as the Alien which the film is named after. After viewing a trailer, it didn’t seem like a film i was dying to see, but with 2 hours to kill between Black Swan and True Grit, and seeing how i hadn’t been let down by Frost and Pegg in the past, i decided to give it a go.



Paul tells the story of British comic book geeks, Graeme Willy (Simon Pegg) and Clive Gollings (Nick Frost) who, while on holiday in the US visiting famous UFO hot spots, encounter an alien named ‘Paul’. As you might expect, Paul, is on a mission to get home and needs the help of Willy and Gollings. Unlike E.T, paul is a foul mouthed, chain smoking, beer drinking, R-rated Alien who likes boobs and eating birds. Their mission to get Paul home is made more difficult as they encounter not only CIA send agents, lead by special agent Lorenzo Zoil (Jason Bateman) but rednecks looking to kick some gay ass, and god-fearing folk looking to get back his daughter.



When i first saw that Seth Rogan was supplying the voice of Paul, i was a little bit skeptical as i feel i have suffered from Seth Rogan overload in recent years, and have become bored and diluted with him playing the same character and telling the same jokes in every film. However, Seth Rogen as Paul worked . Every time he spoke i laughed. It’s the same drunk, foul mouthed stoner comedy you’d probably expect, but coming out of the mouth of a 3-foot tall alien, i found it hilarious. Sadly, this was the only thing that stood out about the film.



That’s not to say there is nothing else to enjoy about Paul, it’s just that while the film is a an enjoyable popcorn flick, it comes no way near to reaching the heights of Shaun of the Dead or Hot Fuzz. The chemistry between Pegg and Frost was at time the funniest and most endearing thing about their previous films, but in Paul, this chemistry seems to have been substituted for foul mouthed toilet humour. Not that i find ‘dick’ jokes and swearing offensive in any way, i just expected more. The supporting cast are funny at times, but it all feels a little bit too try-hard and dare i say it; American! I can understand a desire for the film to be set in the US and to try and break an american audience, but i felt Pegg and Frost just looked a little alien (no pun intended) and lost in their surroundings.



Paul will be a hardcore science fiction fans dream in trying to count the number of references to other films, but i just felt like something was missing. Whether it be the the American setting, or the inferior supporting cast, it just never really got out of second gear and never quite captured the magic of Shaun of the Dead of Hot Fuzz. But hey, maybe that’s my problem and my problem alone and you guys will love it, as it was still an enjoyable film with plenty of laughs throughout

Categories: Film, Reviews


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