Running Time: 105 minutes
Release Date: 3 March 2011
Rick (Owen Wilson) married with three kids is granted a “hall pass” by his wife and high school sweetheart Maggie (Jenna Fischer). Rick’s best buddy Fred (Jason Sudekis) manages to convinces his wife Grace (Christina Applegate) to do the same, which gives them a week of freedom from their marital vows. So while the girls retreat to Cape Cod for the week with their children in tow, the men try and relive their bachelor days all with hilarious consequences. Directed by the Farrelly brothers who are responsible for some of the funniest films such as Dumb and Dumber, and There’s Something about Mary they wroteHall Pass with Pete Jones and Kevin Barnett. True to their previous works it’s all about guys and the goofy things they do particularly if women are involved.
Owen Wilson is great as the hair thinning, pot-bellied “hubbie” trying to recapture his youth with a younger, hotter model in Australian barista, Leigh (Nicky Whelan). This is a far departure from his earlier comedic heart throb roles, such as Wedding Crashers, instead looking much the part as a “let himself go” married man, much to my surprise. His partner in crime Jason Sudekis is hilarious as his quirky offsider having a mid-life crisis. I couldn’t stop laughing at the crassness of the humour and the outrageousness of what I was watching, sometimes I had to cover my eyes in horror at sexual references such as masturbation and oral sex, in this no holds barred shock fest. Insert warning here, definitely not one for the prudes.
Jenna Fischer (The Office) plays the same straight laced nice girl and is perfectly typecast for the role. Christina Applegate (Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, Going the Distance) is solid with lots of comedic experience under her belt though she looks a tad weary against the fresh faced Fischer. Special mention needs to go to Richard Jenkins as Coakley their “pick up” mentor and the obligatory fat friend Hoghead (Larry Joe Campbell). Though the premise of a leave pass is not new a lot of the comedy was original with a bit of toilet humour thrown in for good measure. My expectations were low but I was pleasantly surprised by how funny it was. Looks like the Farrelly Brothers are back in form, though not as good as their opposition, The Hangover, as most guys will be annoyed that the wives get too much screen time and just aren’t funny.