30 Minutes or Less (2011) – Ruben Fleischer

I enjoy dumb comedies and 30 Minutes or Less is one of them. It’s certainly below board on intelligence but above board on laughs. I laughed pretty constantly. True, it’s the cinematic equivalent of cotton candy; difficult not to enjoy but gone and gone permanently the moment you’ve finished.  Though, being forced to think about it, as I am, it reveals itself and morally decrepit and so preposterously short-sided in its plotting that the movie’s “happy ending” would last only until the audience had left the theater.

A couple of lowlifes played by Danny McBride and Nick Swardson plan to hire a hitman (Michael Pina) to off McBride’s overmacho marine father (Fred Ward) and claim the large inheritance but to raise the $100,000 it would take to hire the hitman they kidnap a pizza delivery boy (Jesse Eisenberg) and strap a bomb to his chest and force him to rob a bank.  Eisenberg enlists his best friend (Aziz Ansari) to help him but Ansari is resistant because they’ve just had a falling out over Eisenberg revealing that he slept with Ansari’s sister in high school. Boy, this doesn’t sound funny at all when you spell it all out, does it? And truly, the plot is a just an excuse for McBride, Swarsdon, Eisenberg and Ansari to sat funny funny. The subplot with the sister is so unneeded and the movie gives the character nothing to do but be beautiful and in danger when the plot requires it. It’s noone’s idea of a great movie but I laughed, so there’s that.

Leave a Reply