‘Hit and Run’ is a comedy about a young couple (Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard) that risks it all when they leave their small town life and embark on a road trip that may lead them towards the opportunity of a lifetime. Their fast-paced road trip grows awkwardly complicated and hilarious when they are chased by a friend from the past (Bradley Cooper), a federal marshal (Tom Arnold) and a band of misfits.
Film informationGenre: Action, Comedy
When it comes to good comedy, there are a number of important ingredients. One of the most important ones is a solid script that is easy to follow. This is the one area that Hit and Run comes up short. The script is interesting and funny, but it is not easy to follow at all. It seems almost a bit like Dax Shepard (the screenwriter, director and star of this film) could not make up his mind what kind of movie he wanted to make. Did he want a comedy? Action flick? Rom-Com? Love Story? Drama? Hit and Run has all of these things jumbled up into one movie, and it is too much sometimes.
This aside, the movie is hilarious in a very raunchy kind of way. Dax Shepard and Bradley Cooper are hilarious together, so that combo was a surefire winner going in. The movie is brisk and has incredible comedic timing. All the actors and actresses are on the same page and play well together.
Shepard is the focus of the movie here as Charlie Bronson. Bronson is a guy that once was involved in a bank heist as the driver, double-crossed a psychopath (Bradley Cooper), was put into witness protection in a small California town and now finds himself returning to the scene of the crime in Los Angeles. The problem here is that his small town girlfriend Annie (real life fiancée Kristen Bell) is in tow and she is completely unaware of his past.
Bell and Shepard are absolutely golden together and their interactions make the movie for me. They feed off one another brilliantly and are hilarious in their roles from start to finish. Shepard is a fantastic comedic writer, and once he learns to weave this into the fabric of a movie overall, he will be an awesome screenwriter. Bell is stunningly gorgeous and lights up the screen with every moment she is involved. She is able to show all the ranges of her character with ease and shifts gears as well as any young actress in the field today.
Shepard finds himself heading back to L.A. in very odd fashion. Bell is granted her wish of getting a job interview there by a fairy godmother (Kristin Chenoweth) but there is a catch. She would have to move there. Shepard, in witness protection and being “protected” by Tom Arnold as a US Marshall that can’t shoot a gun properly, can’t follow her to L.A.
They fight, Shepard loses, and he decides to follow her there anyway. Charlie throws his girl into his 1967 Lincoln and figures it can only get so bad…man was he wrong.
Suddenly Bradley Cooper arrives in dreadlocks to kick his tail and collect on an old debt of sorts. Cooper is hilarious in this role as a psycho, and he and Shepard blend perfectly into a comedy soup of errors.
As the past catches up to Shepard, Bell begins to figure it all out. The way she tries to fix things is classic and the conversations she has with him are some of the best dialogue in film I have seen in years. The comedic timing is perfection.
Charlie and Annie are made for each other, and the movie certainly does not lose sight of this. The movie is loaded with chase scenes, hot cars, romance and plenty of comedy, but I wish that they had spent a bit more time cutting out the fat. There are some parts of the movie that simply don’t seem to belong. Some of my fellow reviewers have seen that as “character” but I simply saw it as filler. Whatever the case may be, the movie is a winner for all involved.