Initially the movie R.I.P.D. sounded interesting when the first trailers came out, but as reviews started coming out it sounded less and less appealing. So we decided not to go see it when it first came out, but recently it came out on HBO so we decided to give it a try. I don’t know if I can adequately describe my opinion partly because, even while watching the movie, it was like it just existed. I will try and break down the problems because the concept seems fairly interesting, although a bit of an MIB rip off, it could have been a fun time. It just really did not turn out that well.
Good Cast / Badly Used
One of the things that is interesting is that the cast seemed like it was a decent cast; Ryan Reynolds, Jeff Bridges, Kevin Bacon, and Mary Louise Parker. We have seen these actors in other things and they have all done pretty good, if not great, jobs. It stands to reason that they could pull off a decent movie. But in the end I think Mary Louise Parker was probably my favorite part of the movie and she was a small part at that. I think the biggest thing was the character that Jeff Bridges played just seemed way over done and compared to Ryan Reynolds character it just seemed so off. Some of it was a lacking of chemistry between the characters and a lack of chemistry with the audience. It helps in a movie if you connect with a character to invest in a story and that just did not happen.
Bad Slap Stick
The other part that I had a problem with was some of the humor just felt like grade school humor. There is slap stick humor that is funny, but this just seemed too low brow or maybe it is the timing of it that did not work. The biggest thing I know is that they are obviously trying to be funny and failing. I almost think they needed to be a little bit more serious about it, but not too serious. Honestly, MIB is a great example of good slap stick comedy and a good movie. It takes itself serious enough to seem like actual law enforcement of some kind, but is still a hilariously good time.
The other problem that I realized is that the rules of the world was not explained very well. The simplistic concept was laid out that the members of the R.I.P.D. make sure that the dead who have chosen not to enter judgment and stay on earth actually get taken to judgment. That is the basic idea, but there is obviously more to it than that, which is hinted at in the movie yet not shown. One part in particular is problematic because Jeff Bridges and Ryan Reynolds get in trouble even though they did the right thing, which just seems really odd to me. There is a lack of explanation to really having a reason. It could be that the powers upstairs don’t really need a reason, but it doesn’t play well for an audience.
In the end the movie is neither good or bad, it just is, which is disappointing because it seems like it could have been good.