Dennis Doyle (Simon Pegg) seems destined to be a runner, in every conceivable way. When this film starts, it’s a gorgeous day in London. He’s about to marry his longtime and very pregnant girlfriend Libby (Thandie Newton) when the sheer panic completely takes over his mind, probably as a result of having to deal with two life-changing events in quick succession. In the end, he makes a break for it, ending his relationship.
Five years have passed and Dennis is still a rather cheeky bloke who works security in a Victoria’s Secret-type lingerie store, and lives in a below-street level apartment. He and Libby maintain a cordial relationship, mostly for their son, Jake (the absolutely adorable Matthew Fenton). Libby still feels that with his juvenile and lackadaisical manner, and the caddish way he backed out of their wedding, he really hasn?t grown up. While Dennis is pondering just how much he has screwed up things, another bombshell is dropped: Libby has a new boyfriend. Whit (Hank Azaria) is everything Dennis isn’t: successful, physically fit, good with kids, and very much an adult. But his personality is rather grating, which earned him my own personal nickname of “Nitwhit.”
In an effort to prove just how much he’s grown up, gotten his life together, and to possibly get Libby back, he chooses to participate in the Nike River Run, a marathon along the Thames River. He also wants to show up Whit, who is an avid runner and likes to poke fun at Dennis? not-so-slender physique. That’s a lot of stuff to take on, when you’ve managed to maintain a rather flaky existence. Accompanied and coached by his best friend Gordon (Dylan Moran) and landlord (Harish Patel), he’s got a lot of work to do! How many of you are guessing that a happy ending is received by all? Raise your hands!
In all honesty, while this was a genuinely cute movie, this really cannot compare to the sheer hilarity of Pegg’s performance alongside Nick Frost in Hot Fuzz. I didn?t have any moments where I laughed so hard tears would stream down my face and I couldn?t breathe. That simply did not happen here. David Schwimmer?s debut as a film director was not bad, considering that I read he directed some episodes of Friends. Let?s see what project is next for him. Practice makes perfect! The performances were decent, and my overall impression of the movie was the same. Spend a couple of hours on a weekend afternoon to enjoy lunch and this film.
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