If the first two minutes of R.I.P.D were the gateway in deciding whether to sit in my seat and continue along the two hour journey, or leave and make sure (on my way out) it was noted to the person behind me that maybe talking on their mobile phone wasn’t overly considerate, I would have probably chose the latter. Thankfully, I didn’t move an inch, well, only slightly, with a side glance I hoped the person behind me registered as slightly annoyed. R.I.P.D begun on slightly awkward footing, but thankfully, found its groove and relished in comedic niche and bodacious action set pieces, seamed together with a clever premise and its own art style of direction.
A recently murdered police officer is sent to the realms of the afterlife, and employed and partnered under the R.I.P.D (Rest In Peace Department) to go back to civilization and hunt down, not only the man who killed him, but the dead that reside there under a facade. The premise is incredulously nonsensical, but it spectacularly promotes the zany world it exists within.
Ryan Reynolds does a admirable job of being …. Ryan Reynolds, offering nothing more than his usual quick witted one liners and droning sarcastic replies that he has established in every film prior, but his limited character is over shadowed by the enigmatic, cowboy heroics of Jeff Bridges, which ensues most of the tongue in cheek moments, and is aided by a script that has no self doubt in entertaining the absurdity of some moments, and often achieves a simplistic idea executed with panache. The narrative does attempt at conveying an incentive for an emotional response, but fires unduly blanks at an uninvolved relationship between “Reynolds” and his widowed wife, regrettably trying to address themes that were not necessarily in dire need of being addressed. With the momentum of the narrative and the tonal setting, it does over indulge in the ever moving camera and on the fly editing, but to a degree, it does make the overall experience feel unique.
For all its misgivings; the sometimes unfocused camera work, contrived themes and uncouth opening segment, it does create a promising and refreshingly original tale, with a spectacular sense of humour, satisfying and entertaining action scenes, with Jeff Bridges savouring his role.
R.I.P.D may not appeal to every individual, especially the person glued to their device behind me, but their loss, because it was an imperfect but amusing two hours.
[youtube id=”oQJ-I1OzwXk” width=”620″ height=”360″]