A few months back Sidey, Dan and Reegs sat down to talk about PAUL (2011), the Simon Pegg and Nick Frost comedy in which two sci-fi fans tour of the USA's UFO heartland crosses paths with an extraterresterrial named Paul. It really was a great episode, probably one of our strongest ever, but unfotunately none of us bothered to press the record button that night so several weeks later we attempted to review it again, occassionally misremembering things and being less confident in our take etc.
Having time to think about it again I didn't like it all that much. Paul is just Seth Rogen, Pegg and Frost are lost without Edgar Wright, qouting lines from other iconic franchises in by-the-numbers scenes does not constitute telling jokes in my opinion and there's a slightly sneery and superior pride in the movies atheism, often at the expense of crude jokes about christianity which is really just unnecessary. Just not funny enough given the collective talent here, supervised by SUPERBAD's Greg Mottola and a supporting cast featuring Kirsten Wiig, John Carrol Lynch, Jason Bateman and Jeffrey Tambor. The other guys liked it though so what do I know?
We're going to talk about the movie, Paul. for the second time, because we did record a
version of this review a
long time ago.
Reegs: No, we didn't record it.
SIdey: And we did.
and I deleted
before I had edited. It
Howie: used self censoring yourself about something without realizing it.
SIdey: Yeah. Well, let's get
into it. Cause I got a feeling
that we're going to have differing opinions on this movie
set. let's do
Dan: Well, this is the film of is it part of the coordinator
SIdey: No it's not It's it's not directed by
Edgar Wright, but it is Simon peg and
Reegs: played Graham, Willie and Clive Gollings. yeah. Two English comic book nerd.
SIdey: On a road trip
Reegs: and best friends. Yeah. And they're on a road trip they've gone to, to comic con which in San Diego, I would fucking
Dan: looks amazing. Looks amazing.
I'm not, you know
Reegs: I've never done that before. Probably not. No, but I, I it's cool. I would like to see, I don't, I don't
Dan: I can get talked into buying stuff there. I think that
SIdey: be the people who cause plant.
and let their professional,
they're professional cosplayers And it's like movie quality, you
stuff though, that if you turned up in some fucking like dog shit
you'd look a
Reegs: even the shit one they had in Jersey had some guy, his group that looked fucking amazing.
And yeah, it would be really, really cool. And they go to San Diego comic con I'd love to go to it
Dan: I saw a bumblebee in the co-op.
Reegs: Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah,
Dan: that was pretty good, all that kind of stuff.
Reegs: And the music that's playing over that little montage of them enjoying a comic con is another girl, another planet by the only ones, which is great June.
Dan: Oh, that's right. Cause they, they start out and they're walking across the street, aren't they, they they're going along and they just see all these kind of people dressed up, ready to go and they head on into call me
Reegs: Well, they're there to me. Clive's hero Jeffery Tambore who plays Adam shadow child. He's an author. Yeah. Yeah. Did you buy a book? He's doing a signing. Did you buy a book of women says no, he just sells it the fuck off.
Um has books, Jupiter, Praxis, Jenny star pepper in the huge white Gibbon night Tony star pepper and the great brass.
And very topical for us night of the moths.
Reegs: Yeah. So, but unfortunately Jeffrey Tomball, he's a complete piece of shit. His knee or Z. I don't know if we're allowed to now, now Louis CK is allowed to kind of masturbate and talk
Reegs: it now.
Isn't it? You say? Yeah. So it's, that's cool. Now you can just go and do a crime and then just talk about it. So it's like Will's face is going to release an attacking video punching videos.
SIdey: What does it mean? that he's resigned from
Howie: He caught me nominated again,
SIdey: Is that what it means?
You still might movies
Dan: voting rights. It's no big deal
Reegs: sorry. A fair. Anyway. Yeah, so they meet him, they get assigned to he's their inspiration because Clive is an aspiring writer. And they, the Clive is there on a sort of inspirational road trip, isn't it. And they're going across all the sites of maybe. Extra terrestrial importance in the Southwest of the USA.
Dan: Again, just an epic trip. I don't know who wrote this, was it Simon Pegg and Nick force, because it just seems the kind of thing that they, you know, it's a passion of theirs that they're nerdy about it anyway. And they've just kind of said, wouldn't it be great if we did a road trip, met an alien
SIdey: think it,
was it came about in a break and
of Shaun of the dead. there was
there was a storm and they, had, he did that drawing of the alien, doing
that the one that's in the film, he just Simon, Simon peg, just a couple of that together while they were waiting, waiting to do something else And then she wanted the dead. So that's pretty rad.
Dan: And then that was the acorn from which this mighty
SIdey: Yes And then they
they did the road trip themselves. And some of the things that happened on the road, trip were brought into
the actual film.
Reegs: one of the things that happens on the road trip is they go to an, an in the alien in, and two hunters confront them. I'm assuming they might be homosexual.
It's one of a number of, sort of little jibes about.
Gay relationship, which they're constantly at pains to point out is not, which I think is just basically homophobic really like everybody accusing them of gay being gay and their
Dan: I think they were just making it clear that they weren't because they were potentially looking for other partners.
Reegs: Maybe, well, when they leave anyway, they accidentally crash into the Hunter's truck causing a dent, which becomes important because they start chasing them down. But as they racing along they, cause they think it's the hunters behind them. They speed right off. And eventually the vehicle catches up and goes past and they realize it's just another car.
And then the car crashes in front of them and rolls off the highway. And then when they go and investigate the crash that.
from this world.
Dan: Who's just the classic classic looking
SIdey: Seth Rogen he did wear a motion capture.
suit. Quite funny. Yeah.
Reegs: Yeah. He's he is, he looks like you say, like the stereotypical, I think they're called graze. Maybe I want to say, is this the type of big eyes, big head sort of stubby,
Reegs: gray bodies. You've seen the alien and they talk about probing and all that stuff. And he's like, well, how much do you think I can learn from an ass?
But yeah, they kind of comically ended up agreeing to give him a lift,
Dan: well, PO's a bit like Ted you know, he he's, he's a, yeah, he's a, he's got a potty mouth.
Reegs: Yeah, yeah, yeah, exactly. You haven't found anything interesting to say about him, which is kind of my exact point. Yeah, so Jason Bateman is playing the delightfully named Lorenzo.
SIdey: but we didn't know that, till the end. It's just agent soil.
Reegs: yeah, you
SIdey: That's the gritty comedy reveal. it
Reegs: yeah. Yeah. I've undercut that pretty nicely.
Dan: I like him Bateman Israel. I think he, he's just a,
a fantastic time in, for co for
SIdey: I haven't
seen Ozark, but he'll always no matter how many shit things do, does it always have credit in the bank for me because of arrested development.
I just love that
Reegs: And this, when he gets to the crash site, he tests a puddle of piss with his finger, and then he informs his mysterious female superior. We don't know who it is over the radio that he's closing in on. And she is talking about use local law enforcement to back you up. And he then recruits these two other agents, which is bill Hader and some other Saturday night live guy to help him,
Dan: He's from Brooklyn nine,
Reegs: Oh, that's right.
Yeah. It's that guy from? Yeah, no.
Howie: just agent Boyle
Reegs: Gullah. Trulio yeah,
Howie: is AGA PlayStation boiling.
Reegs: Agent Boyle. Yeah. Yeah. And he's basically playing the same character in this actually pretty much. They run into Kirsten wig. Remember she's a creator. She's like a real hardcore
SIdey: well her dad's her Dad's a real fundamentalist
Dan: she been in before.
not the Saturday night, Saturday night live and
is probably the best thing. I think
SIdey: there's a one,
comedy One that I keep thinking about nominating thingy, Bob and
something go to Del Mar or something like that.
Dan: Please nominate a comedy. Instead of putting me through the middle of another
SIdey: Okay. Well, think
Reegs: she's got a horrible, abusive and controlling father who was John Carroll Lynch, the big guy in the.
SIdey: Yes. And Zodiac as well.
Reegs: Yes. Yeah. That's right. Yeah. She's got a disability. I think it's the
Howie: No gummy. I that's what we should say. Gammy. I,
Reegs: And then it comes out the he's. He. Paul has been like the inspiration for a lot of iconography in popular culture, like ITI and I don't know. He invented the character of the X-Files guy, wherever he's called
SIdey: We hear him on
and it is actually Spielberg
Reegs: Yeah, it is. Yeah.
Dan: Wow. That's that's cool. Isn't it? I can, I can just imagine a Simon Pegg and Nick foster, just ticking off all the little things that they
SIdey: Well there are
Dan: to nerd out
SIdey: 1 billion references to things. Loads of star wars stuff in
Reegs: Yeah. So yeah, he's got abilities as well. I don't know whether we've seen them manifest yet, but,
Dan: well you you find out he saves a bird. So he, there there's an injured bird which actually succumbs to his injuries. Yes. And it dies. And then Paul manages to to kind of. Put it cop it in his hands and bring it close to his face and blow on it a bit.
And miraculously, the bird then flaps his wings before he just stops it in his mouth and eats it.
Reegs: and he can also he can touch you and sort of telepathically imbue you with all of his knowledge, you know, including, including the sort of fundamental
Dan: we've missed loads of great moments in, in there, the original kind of discovery of him and, and their reaction to him and, and understanding, you know Nick foster just keeps on kind of
Dan: out and everything.
And I know obviously they, the agents catch up with them at one point and they have to kind of hide and
SIdey: he starts to get really fucked off because Simon peg and Paul sort of bond very quickly.
And he's really disgruntled because he wants to be the one to, to be pals with the alien.
have that case. and he's just feels like the third wheel. is bit by put out by or,
Dan: But that, that kind of irons itself out after a little while. And they get they get high around the campfire and make a few promises and friendships builds and everything between them.
Reegs: she also cursed him wig because she's been touched by the. Thing where she now doesn't believe in anything she's eager to send. She takes the drugs and all that sort of stuff. And her story becomes a romance story with Glaive a little bit.
SIdey: She starts to swear
Reegs: yeah, peg runs after he says he has shin splints and I don't, I'm not what our shin
SIdey: but they are literally like where your, your shin is splintering and you have painful like bone
spurs, despite going into
Reegs: what it sounds like. Your shin is splintering.
SIdey: no, runners guy there, And I don't run
Howie: I have, it's horrible.
Dan: You're kind of plotting through the plot Tio and go plodding through the plot. So I get the feeling you didn't love this as much as. I did anyway, cause I've seen this probably three or four
Dan: And I would say probably a fifth and six,
SIdey: Well, it just, it just becomes a road movie, a chase movie of well Kirsten Blake's father is going after them. The two guys that they've crashed into
they're on there and chase and the FBI who are trying to.
wait. You've got the local law enforcement that have been asked to help they're on the, on the trout but also agents, soil. And he
is obviously painted as the real bad guy in it because he's like, hell bent on getting hold of Paul. but that is obviously subsided at the end. And he's trying to help
Reegs: Yeah well, he, it turns out he was working on Paul's instructions and he was kind of muddying and trying to slow things down the whole time.
SIdey: Paul had introduced agents or to.
Reegs: Yeah, yeah. And the rednecks turn up as well as part of the finale. They, he caused them the space faggots that dignified automobile
Dan: the, the, the agents don't actually know what they're looking for as well. A lot of the time today, part of the way through the film until the penny drops, he's an alien. When they see it for themselves, they're, they're just told to look for something strange and, you know, all kinds of dressed up like X-Files anyway, but.
That's the point is just, it makes lots of references to lots of different films and to better films maybe. Yeah.
Reegs: a reference, isn't
Dan: not all of them better.
A reference to something isn't
Dan: But they make jokes off those references. So I dunno, it worked for me. I was, I really enjoyed his film. I think it's it's them having fun and that comes through as much as anything else.
Where they, you, you generally are on this road trip with.
Two mates who are having a great time. Then of course all the alien stuff happens. But it's always the chemistry between, I think Simon Pegg and Nick force that, that just can stick a film together for me. And
Reegs: Yeah. There's numerous. I remember like numerous nasty attacks that are a bit preachy about atheism and, and Christianity and this, and it just seems like really unnecessary. And then lots of like really, really cruel. Maybe the humor.
That's kind of just not really all that funny a lot of the time. I don't dunno. The premise is good and the, you know, the stuff at the comic con stuff I enjoyed, but I didn't find it really hit that Not really. And I felt there was a bit of a nasty subbed, you know, subtext to a lot of it as well. So yeah, it just, it wasn't for me, Paul. Well, just put anyone who's
SIdey: someone called Paul
Reegs: know, the alien is just Seth Rogan. I mean, it's just, it, it's just Seth Rogan being Seth Rogen. There's like, I know that's a joke, but
Dan: You know, it's it's a take on a alien film, isn't it? And it's a, an, a, an a road movie.
Reegs: I think he showed us without acre right there a little bit.
They, you know, they were a bit lacking and he was the
Reegs: stitched them together and created dynamite.
Howie: What was that girl involved in the space series? He was, ah, okay. Yeah.
SIdey: basically the, the editing style that gives it away His dislike really
sharp Yeah, he wasn't involved in this. It was Greg Mattola who did super bad. So it's that sort of comedy
haven't seen this
Reegs: Sigourney Weaver pops up at the end, we never said it. There you go. Spoiler
SIdey: She's the, she is the big, bad.
And the there's a, another lady in the, in the diner.
SIdey: Simon Pegg is wearing, I think it's an empire strikes back t-shirt and he gets shot in the chest. There's a massive hole. And his reaction
really like that. T-shirt I saw, I liked I know what you're saying, rigs. It is kind of crude and like a bit sort of immature, but that's me and I really enjoyed it.
I have got a list of all the references, But it's wait. It would take like half an hour to go through them all because they're just fucking lights. I really enjoyed it and it just, I find, I don't know why I find it so funny that, that
Seth Rogan was in a motion
capture suit So it's so crude. But I guess that's two different takes of that me and
really liked it
raised not so much
Reegs: jokes and a bit nasty.
Howie: I did laugh. I enjoyed it. I think I did look at it like what you were saying that as like a part of a series of those boys with Shaun of the dead and it's the weaker one out of all of them.
But you know, it was like I've seen it a couple of times and I know I've laughed. Would it that the whole thing about the whole denying that there are a couple.
I don't think it's intended to be quite as offensive as it's clumsy, but I also think it's also showing how insecurity is about the fat that ear, such a close relationship with Simon peg, that Nick frost is like, well, should I be gay?
Should we be a couple? But we're not because I want to go out with this woman. And, and there's, I think it's
Reegs: I more objected to the stuff about like, I think.
People who believe in God and Christians and stuff, this such an easy target and like really ridiculing there, but their belief just seems but it does, it seems totally unnecessary really.
And they just go for it really hard in this. And it's like, and they set up like a really Kara caricature or stereotype and then take it down. It's like not the most subtle
SIdey: Yeah, I've watched it a few times when I'm watching it again. I know I'm going to enjoy all the scenes of Kristen wig learning to swear.
I do really like that.
So I dunno, I liked it. Split, split down the middle probably on This one, let us know what you thought.