There are jokes that go on forever and manage to evoke a few giggles and then there are the ones that have you rolling on the floor. Due Date resembles the former as compared to Hangover- the latter. Comparisons of the two Todd Phillips movies are inevitable and will mostly work against his latest release.
While it isn’t dreadfully boring or clichéd, it does get a bit monotonous. The beginning definitely evokes expectations when the two protagonists meet at the airport in a rather ominous manner- Ethan Tremblay’s (Zach Galifianakis) drunk friend knocks the door off Peter Highman’s (Downey Junior’s) posh ride. The incident prophesies the events that follow and you tuck in looking forward to the imminent disaster.
Peter is a pro-pah executive, disciplined and uptight, on his way to LA for the birth of his child. Unfortunately for him, an encounter with his counter-personality, Ethan gets him into trouble with the authorites, kicked off a the plane, put on the ‘no-fly’ list and left penniless at the airport. Out of sheer helplessness he accepts a ride from the oblivious troublemonger.
Peter Highman is downright hilarious, from his expressions, to his demeanor, to his comic timing. He plays the wannabe Hollywood star to perfection with his inherent humor. With every passing minute Downey Jr. ‘sees red’, while Ethan buys his ‘glaucoma’ medication (read marijuana), stands by while the other gets beaten up and gets them into a horrifying accident However the equation changes after a turban-clad Ethan courageously rescues Peter from the Mexican authorities.
The ride doesn’t get any better but tolerance levels improve. Since the movie doesn’t really have a story and is more like a prolonged situation it should have been more dynamic. The humor was there, but it drew an erratic graph and needed to be more omnipresent. The pair, as diverse as they are, share a queer chemistry, which somehow isn’t explored enough.
Near the end you’re shifting in your seat, but it signs off on a humorous note. Not good enough to redeem itself but satisfying.
Due Date is funny in parts for which it is a one time watch.