Hit & Run-attachment0

Hit & Run

Movie Information

The Story: A man in the witness protection program jeopardizes his safety by driving his girlfriend to Los Angeles for a job interview. The Lowdown: Mostly unfunny comedy with nice leads that will appeal mostly to persons who like to watch cars endlessly driving around to no real purpose.
Genre: Action Comedy
Director: David Palmer, Dax Shepard
Starring: Kristin Bell, Dax Shepard, Bradley Cooper, Tom Arnold, Kristin Chenoweth, Beau Bridges
Rated: R

What is there possibly to say about Hit & Run? After noting that it is probably the most negligible and disposable film of the year, where can you go — besides another movie?  It reminded me a great deal of the sort of movies we used to run at the drive-in where I was projectionist back in 1974 — the kind of movie that would prompt me to open the back of the projector so that it would illuminate the pasture behind the projection booth on the chance that the cows were doing something more interesting than the film. Unfortunately, that alternative was not open to me with Hit & Run, but the reminiscence did allow me to kill some time wondering whatever became of those cows. Believe me, that was a plus whenever Hit & Run went into extended — and sometimes slow motion — scenes of cars doing doughnuts or wheelies before chasing each other. That’s the kind of movie this is.

In a way, I hate being so down on this movie. I mean, next week when The Oogieloves opens, this will probably look pretty good. In a way, Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard are just so darn cute that disliking their stupid little movie feels like being mean to kittens. I’m sorry, but cute only goes so far — and this movie goes much further and for far too long. (Come on, folks: A dumb action comedy doesn’t need to be this long by at least 15 minutes.)

For the record, there’s sort of a story. Dax Shepard plays Charles Bronson (an assumed name, of course), who in reality is Yul Perkins, a getaway driver living in a sleepy little town under the witness protection program ever since he turned in evidence to the state on his bank robbing compatriots. He has a singularly inept keeper, Randy (Tom Arnold), who has a problem with his gun going off and forgetting to put cars in park. Bronson also has a girlfriend, Annie (Kristen Bell), who lands her dream job, which is unfortunately in Los Angeles. Throwing caution to the wind, Yul goes AWOL with her. Unfortunately, not only is Randy in pursuit, but so is Annie’s ex, Gil (TV actor Michael Rosenbaum), who has discovered Yul’s true identity and past. Naturally, he tips off Yul’s former associates, especially Alex (Bradley Cooper), who not only wants the hidden money they stole, but a certain amount of revenge over having been raped in jail. Much fast driving ensues. And that’s pretty much it.

Is any of it funny? Some of it is mildly amusing — accent on the mildly — but most of it is just tedious and repetitive. It’s mostly painless and the leads are pleasant. That, however, is about the best that can be said. Put it this way, you can do better — even by just not going to the movies. Rated R for pervasive language including sexual references, graphic nudity, some violence and drug content.


About Ken Hanke
Head film critic for Mountain Xpress from December 2000 until his death in June 2016. Author of books "Ken Russell's Films," "Charlie Chan at the Movies," "A Critical Guide to Horror Film Series," "Tim Burton: An Unauthorized Biography of the Filmmaker."

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4 thoughts on “Hit & Run

  1. Ken Hanke

    There’s actually a good bit of frontal nudity in the film — all involving folks over 70. It is, I think, meant to be amusing.

  2. Jeremy Dylan

    There’s actually a good bit of frontal nudity in the film — all involving folks over 70.

    A glimpse into Jason Segel’s AARP years?

  3. Ken Hanke

    Possibly, I suppose, but the gentleman in the picture is definitely not of the same faith as Mr. Segel.

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