If you have violent reactions to Jesse Eisenberg, then this isn’t a film for you. If you think Danny McBride and Nick Swardson are the festering armpit of comedy, see something else. But if you don’t mind these things, then here’s a movie that, while never spectacular, can be an amusing diversion. The plot of the film is convoluted, with terminal muck-up Dwayne (McBride) deciding to hire a hitman to knock off his millionaire father (Fred Ward) in order to pick up his inheritance and open a combination tanning salon and brothel. To raise $100,000 for a hitman, Dwayne—with the help of his best friend and self-taught explosives expert Travis (Swardson)—concocts a plan to kidnap a pizza boy, strap a bomb to him, and force him to hold up a bank before he’s blown up. The pizza deliveryman they end up with is Nick (Eisenberg), who’s got little else beyond a dead-end job and a crush on his best friend Chet’s (Aziz Ansari) sister (Dilshad Vadsaria). So with a bomb strapped to his chest and reluctant help from Chet, Nick sets out to rob a bank and save his own life. The bulk of the comedy is of the R-rated-violence-and-vulgarity variety, something that’s getting more and more difficult to make look fresh in a summer already over-stuffed with R-rated comedies. That 30 Minutes or Less is a film about friendship, between not just the characters of Nick and Chet, but Dwayne and Travis, too, is a plus. That both pairs work so well off each other, and display genuine charisma, and act and behave — fallings out and all — like friends really would is what makes the film work more than it doesn’t.
Official Site: www.30minutesorless.com
Director: Ruben Fleischer
Writer: Michael Diliberti and Matthew Sullivan
Cast: Jesse Eisenberg, Danny McBride, Aziz Ansari, Nick Swardson, Michael Peña, Bianca Kajlich, Fred Ward, Dilshad Vadsaria, Jordan Trovillion and Alex Rush
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