This is hardly your typical “fish out of water” story, when the two fish are a pair of Brits on holiday in the US, and the “normal” person is an alien who crash landed here in the late 1940’s.
Paul, the alien has been a “guest” of the government all this time, but now fears he’s going to be cut up like a biology lab frog, so he escapes and runs into Graham and Clive, who just happen to be visiting famous UFO sites in the Southwest.
When a movie begins and ends at Comic-Con, you know it’s not going to be the typical plot borrowed or stolen from older movies.
Simon Pegg (“Shaun of the Dead” and Scotty from the new film version of “Star Trek”) and Nick Frost (“Pirate Radio” and “Hot Fuzz”) are terrific as the bumbling Brits.
Add in Kristen Wiig as the naïve daughter of a God fearing, gun toting,
trailer park landlord; Bill Hader (SNL) and Joe Lo Truglio (Reno 911) as
a pair of inept, low level Feds; and Jason Bateman as the government
agent in charge of recapturing Paul.
The alien is voiced by Seth
Rogen, who seems to be playing the “Knocked Up” version of himself. He
chain smokes cigarettes, farts, and lights up the occasional joint. Did I
mention that Jane Lynch, Blythe Danner, and Steven Spielberg are also
in this film?
“Paul” pays homage to just about every alien
television or film you can think of, from the “X-Files” to “E.T.”, and
“Close Encounters of the Third Kind.”
Instead of being bombarded
with phasers, we get jokes, raunchy comedy, and flat out funny moments,
as the Brits, along with Wiig help Paul go back and see the woman who
rescued him from his marooned ship so many decades ago.
it doesn’t take long for the FBI agents, despite being kept in the dark
by their superiors, to figure out what they are chasing, so they
continue to pursue Paul as well.
There is a mysterious female in charge of recapturing Paul, but her identity is not revealed until late in the film.
though there were fewer than a dozen folks at the theater last night,
rip roaring laughter could be heard all over the place.
Great plot, superb writing, excellent jokes, and even good action. A must see. My rating – a home run – three and a half stars.