3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Paul - the film that ET should have been,
This review is from: Paul [DVD] (DVD)
Simon Pegg and Nick Frost have done very well for themselves with a series of films taking a modern, humorous look at the films that they (and I) grew up with. Shaun of the Dead was a great pastiche of the schlock horror genre, and Hot Fuzz was a perfect take on action films. Here they take on the next sacred cow, good old fashioned alien encounter films, primarily E.T.
Pegg and Frost play two aspiring SF writers on a road trip across America. Along the way they encounter Paul, a real, genuine, honest to goodness alien. He's a sort of intergalactic hippie, stranded on Earth and trying to blow the joint before the authorities catch up with him. The trio start on an unbelievable road trip (picking up a fundamentalist Christian along the way) with an exciting denoument as they bond, find themselves, and find what is really important in their lives.
Pastiching films such as ET, Starman, Close Encounters, Easy Rider, Men in Black (how do you pastiche a pastiche? These guys manage it brilliantly!) and a host of other alien/road trip movies, this is a gloriously loopy drive across America with some engaging characters. Frost and Pegg are in good form, but Seth Rogan, as the slightly roguish and charming Paul really steals the show. His laid back delivery really makes the relaxed intergalactic hippie come to life, and you really wouldn't mind spending time in his company.
I have bad memories of sitting through ET as a child, and I have to say I really wish that it had been a lot more like this film, without all the sappy kids stuff...
It's about as entertaining a couple of hours as you could wish for. I enjoyed it all the more as I am familiar with a lot of the cultural references being taken off, but the Better Half assures me it was also good fun for the non-cognoscenti.
5 stars for this entertaining and uplifting romp.