Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Run, Fatboy, Run

It's probably time for me to see some mainstream films, but I see what I feel like seeing.
"Run, Fatboy, Run" is another British comedy that is not really getting a lot of attention and is not a box office smash. With Simon Pegg, star of "Shaun of the Dead" and "Hot Fuzz," at the front of a bizarre premise, it was bound to be amusing.
Pegg and Michael Ian Black (of "The State" fame, look it up kids) wrote it. David Schwimmer, yeah, the guy from "Friends," in his feature film directorial debut, manned the helm. A strange combination to say the least, but it turns out to work like magic. Disparate and seemingly incongruous comedic talents that don't seem to work on paper manage to pull it off without a hitch.
Pegg plays a coward who runs out on his gorgeous, pregnant fiancee on the day they were supposed to get hitched and essentially spends the next few years running from all responsibility. When the mother of his child decides to move on, he freaks out and wants her back. So he runs a marathon. Right, I know, it sounds like every cliche and lame joke in the book. But again, what seems like a bad idea on paper worked out really well in real film life.
Other than the improbable pairing of Thandie Newton and Simon Pegg, it actually seemed kind of feasible without stretching the imagination too much. Pegg's Dennis actually tells his ex at one point that he isn't trying to win her back with his desperate scheme, but that he'd settle for her respect. The more touching aspect of the film takes on its own life as Dennis becomes human and almost lovable instead of the caricature of a loser that he seems on the surface.
Somehow, the merging of these three seemingly inappropriately matched comedians brings out the best in each of them and the writing and directing team puts together a stirring little comedy.
I'll give it an A.
--John Berry, Online Editor


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