Well… it’s got some really cool tunes.
“Hit and Run” is one of those small crime semi-comedies, kind of along the lines of “Snatch” (not that it’s comparable in quality), say, where you get a cast full of colorful characters, anchored around a couple of central characters, and then there’s a lot of bumbling and violence until everything intersects at the end.
“Charles Bronson” (Dax Shepard) is in the witness protection program, but when his girlfriend Annie (Kristen Bell) lands the job of her dreams in LA, he decides to go with her, even though it may compromise his cover and jeopardize his life. Along the way from the sticks to Los Angeles to get to her job interview, they amass a string of people “out to get them” for a variety of reasons. The federal marshal supervising his case (Tom Arnold), who doesn’t want to see Bronson violate the terms of his agreement, Annie’s jealous ex-boyfriend (Michael Rosenbaum), a horny gay cop (Jess Rowland), and of course, eventually, the gang of people who Bronson ratted on and went into witness protection to avoid in the first place (led by Bradley Cooper).
Once Bronson’s cover is blown, a chase movie ensues, complete with multiple car chase scenes (the highlight of the movie) and a spattering of gunplay. It’s all underscored by sporadic attempts at comedic situations and dialogue, and backed by a very hip selection of tunes.
It’s a movie I felt I should have liked much more than I actually did. My main issue is that it’s extremely “talky”. Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell spend about half the movie, literally, talking. Whether it be romantic banter, hammering out their relationship, or dropping exposition in order to convey their backstories and set things up, much of the movie consists of those two talking. And neither the dialogue, acting, nor characters are interesting enough to support it.
Additionally, even though they were decent and even occasionally excellent, too much time is spent in car chases. There are at least three or four lengthy car chase scenes in the movie… I honestly grew tired of it.
But the worst thing about it were the terrible supporting characters. Bradley Cooper’s character and a couple of quick cameos aside, all of the comedic supporting characters are absolutely horrible. Tom Arnold’s clumsy Federal Marshall is terrible. Kristin Chenoworth’s pill popping skank of a college administrator is terrible. Michael Rosenbaum’s obsessed ex-boyfriend character is terrible. Jess Rowland’s gay cop character is terrible. Get the picture? Cooper’s dreadlocked convict is really the only salvageable side character. And there’s no shortage of side characters here at all.
It’s not to say the movie was completely awful or anything. It has some moments along the way, and I’m sure Kristen Bell fans will enjoy seeing her onscreen. There are three or four quick cameos that were each fun, the car chases were all fairly decent, even if I did suffer from overload by the end, and Bradley Cooper has a couple of funny moments. Overall, though, I wasn’t all that impressed. It’s an extremely forgettable movie.