“Hit and Run” (2012) Movie Review

Uploaded on Thursday 23 August 2012


The last time we saw Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard together on the big screen was for 2010’s lackluster “When in Rome.” Now, the real-life sweethearts team up for “Hit and Run” and I can tell you that this romantic car chase comedy is much better than their previous pairing.

The film draws you in right from the very beginning when Annie (Bell) and Charlie (Shepard) are canoodling on the bed. We get to meet the main characters in their most intimate moment. Charlie is trying to sooth his fiancée, Annie, because she is extremely nervous. She’s on her way to meeting her boss at a local college, Debby Kreeger, played by the scene stealing Kristin Chenoweth.

There are indeed many scene stealers in the movie. Among them is Tom Arnold as the bumbling U.S. Marshal Randy Anderson. He’s there to protect Charlie, who we learn, is within the witness protection program.

Written and co-directed by Shepard, “Hit and Run” is populated by inspired performances and cameos. Like a true labor of love, many of Shepard’s friends appeared on the film such as Bradley Cooper as the mysterious and dangerous Alex Demitri who will do anything to catch Charlie.

Shepard used the popular car chase comedy, “Smokey and the Bandit,” as an inspiration. It’s interesting to note that like Shepard, Burt Reynolds invited all of his showbiz friends to help with making the film. Both movies have that joyful vibe that you get when you work with people close to you.

Yet, not all of “Hit and Run” works. Some of the jokes are less inspired than others. But when a scene is written well and the actors deliver, you will be rolling in the aisles, laughing loudly. One of my favorite scenes is the creative use of the song “Pure Imagination” from 1971’s “Willie Wonka & The Chocolate Factory.”

The movie also lights up with the introduction of the token cop character played by Jess Rowland. He gives a non-stereotypical portrayal of a gay police officer whose narrative arc involves Tom Arnold’s character and a fictional smartphone app called Pouncer.

I am also proud to note that “Hit and Run” has a deep Palm Springs connection. Not only did Shepard write the film in the valley, the people behind the production are local residents. Jim Casey, President and CEO of Integrated Wealth Management, is the Executive Producer, and Kim Waltrip from the films “Expecting Mary” and “Adopt a Sailor” serves as one of the movie’s producers.

One of the highlights of the film is Bell and Shepard. Their relationship is the focal point of the movie and it depends highly on their palpable chemistry. Shepard also writes interesting characters with equally interesting names. Wait until you see why his character’s name is Charles Bronson.

“Hit and Run” is a joyride of a movie that you should take for a spin. It’s funny, heartfelt, and full of memorable characters. Go ahead and take your own sweetheart to see the film. Just don’t forget to gas up the car.



Language: English

Length: 2:00

Country: United States