Top critical review
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Effectively, it's a remake of Planes, Trains & Automobiles
on 7 February 2011
Due Date features Robert Downey Junior (Iron Man) and Zach Galifianakis (The Hangover) as Peter Highman and Ethan Tremblay, a couple of guys on the same flight to LA. Peter is heading home to LA to meet his heavily pregnant wife who is about to give birth whilst Ethan is heading to Hollywood to try and make it as an actor. When a minor altercation gets them thrown off of the plane and put on the no-fly list, Peter has no option but to buddy up with the insanely annyoing Ethan and drive the distance from Atlanta to LA to make the birth of his child. Will he make in time? Or will Ethan's endless stops & detours be their downfall?
This is the same premise as the classic 1987 comedy Planes, Trains & Automobiles (albeit with a pregnancy instead of the Christmas holidays being the reason for the trip) as the guys form the original odd couple. The premise holds water being ushered into the modern age as the pair bumble from one travel-related disaster to another, hilarity ensues.
There is the feeling that both actors found their roles pretty easy; with Downey Jr. playing the high-flying suited architect with no patience and Galifianakis plays the same character he always does with the wild-eyed, dead-pan delivery style and the ever-present facial hair. Whilst neither of them are pushing the envelope in any respect they provide very tangible - if a little clichéd and two-dimensional - characters that bring a lot of humour to the saga. Jamie Foxx (Collateral) also pops up as one of Peter's friends that lends a hand and adds an unexpected twist to the story.
The film is beautifully shot as we get to see the guys travelling across some of the most famous U.S. landscapes (The Missippi & the Grand Canyon to name a couple) and this is overlaid with a great score that fits each scene well. Although the humour relies mainly on hyperbole between Galifianakis' stupidity and Downey's straight man this is an honestly entertaining experience for the duration, clocking in at a light 95 minutes.
The Blu-ray has a suite of extras which include: The complete "Two and a Half Men" scene featuring Zack Galifianakis (an excerpt of it plays in the movie), a few additional scenes that didn't make the cut, an action & gag reel and last but not least "Due Date: Too Many Questions" a mash-up compilations of all of the ridiculously stupud questions Ethan asks Peter, hit after hit.
In conclusion, a solid film that isn't all that original, a bit thin on character development but it's one funny ride from beginning to end. Recommended!!