Three buddies wake up from a bachelor party in Las Vegas, with no memory of the previous night and the bachelor missing. They make their way around the city in order to find their friend before his wedding.
In Atlanta on business, straight-laced and overly analytical architect Peter Highman is flying home to Los Angeles and his wife Sarah for the imminent birth of their first child. However, traveling by plane no longer becomes an option when he and a fellow passenger, aspiring actor Ethan Tremblay, are kicked off the plane, which was caused by Ethan's social inappropriateness, due to being generally unaware, exacerbated by Peter's temper at a situation against his sensibilities. Peter, who ends up without money or his suitcase, is forced to accept Ethan's offer of a shared car ride to Los Angeles, Ethan who is looking for his big acting break. For Peter, this partnership is one made in hell, but he feels he has no other choice. Peter obviously wants to take as direct and as quick a route as possible, while he is at Ethan's mercy as the person with the driver's license, car rental and money. They get into one misadventure after another on this trip, with the same issue at each ... Written by
The screenplay for this film was featured in the 2009 Blacklist; a list of the "most liked" unmade scripts of the year. See more »
While driving from Hartsfield Jackson Airport in Atlanta, you can briefly see Turner Field Baseball Stadium on the left side (driver's side) of the car. That would indicate that they would be traveling towards the airport, not away from it. See more »
I just had the strangest dream. It's Friday. We're at the hospital. But it's not a hospital, it's a, a, a forest of sorts. And I know that because right next to you there's a bear. A grizzly, cooling his feet in a stream. And all of a sudden, you begin to deliver, and I can't get to you. But the bear can. And the next thing I know, he is holding our beautiful baby boy. And here's where it gets odd. Uh, he chews the cord. But, strangely, I'm okay with it. That's gotta be a good sign.
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I can certainly sympathize with Peter's motivations for getting home for the birth of his kid. I was out of town at a training course two weeks before my first child was due to be born. About four in the morning I got a phone call at the hotel that my wife unexpectedly went into labor. I made the drive between Austin and Houston in record time by driving well over 100 mph and praying a cop didn't spot me. So as I watched Peter frantically trying to get home in "Due Date," I completely understood his desperation, frustration and willingness to break a few laws in order to get to the hospital in time. I've made that bleary-eyed, panicked, dazed-and-confused dash through the hospital before, too.
The success of this film is entirely due to Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis. I think if you had taken this script and had any other actors perform it, you would have had an entirely different and less funny movie. The two have wonderful chemistry together and you can tell their ad-libbing enhanced the scenes. A lot of comparisons are going to be made between this and "Planes, Trains and Automobiles" and they're entirely justified. You have a road trip picture with a great comedy duo, and it's a lot of fun.
Robert Downey Jr. is excellent as the high-strung Peter Highman. Somehow every situation he's put in spins completely out of his control. Ethan manages to push every single one of Peter's buttons. Because of Ethan, Peter is battered physically, he has multiple run-ins with the law, and he breaks even his own moral code. By the end of the movie, Ethan has violated Peter in every way imaginable except sexually, and he manages to avoid that just barely. Downey is great at portraying frustration and exasperation, especially in the face of Galifianakis. A lot of the laughs are also generated when Peter does something he wouldn't do in any other sane situation. Whether he's punching a kid in the stomach or spitting in a dog's face (how they got that by the humane society I'll never know), there's no limit to the depth to which Ethan can push Peter to sink.
Zach Galifianakis is also excellent as Ethan Tremblay. He's a character so incredibly eccentic it's hard to decide where to start in saying why. He's an aspiring actor with no experience or talent, yet dreams of working on "Two and a Half Men." He carries the ashes of his dead father with him which is the source of an endless number of jokes, both obvious and not. I won't even get into Ethan's ritual before going to sleep. Ethan could push anyone to the brink of insanity, yet he doesn't mean to be annoying. Despite his good intentions and efforts to be friendly, any sane human would want to strangle him.
There are a few fun cameos in the film, too. Juliette Lewis appears as Heidi, a white-trash, pot-dealing mother of two. Danny McBride has a cameo as Lonnie, a Western Union employee you wouldn't want to mess with (I would also think twice about doing business with Western Union after seeing this! How did they get this approved?). And Jamie Foxx also appears as Darryl, Peter's friend. Considering his crazy comedy past, I expected more from Foxx in this film but he leaves the spotlight for the leads.
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