Paul is going to be pure heaven for fans of Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. And if you’ve not been exposed to their brillance, surely you’ll recognize a few members of the rest of the cast. I actually hadn’t looked at the full list of talent before I walked into the theater for the screening, so as star after star kept appearing on stage… I couldn’t help but think… this is awesome. Jeffrey Tambor, Jane Lynch, Jason Bateman, Bill Hader, Sigourney Weaver, Joe Lo Truglio, Kristen Wiig, Blythe Danner all star alongside the crude-humored yet endearing alien voiced by Seth Rogen.
Paul crashed on Earth in 1947… and no not in Roswell… in Wyoming. I’m actually really curious as to why they didn’t do Roswell, New Mexico, seeing as how they show a calendar that says July 1947… the same month and year of the alleged UFO crash just north of Roswell, but moving on. The opening scene is very reminiscent of Steven Spielberg’s Close Encounters of the Third Kind. The spaceship crashes and unfortunately takes out a golden retriever owned by a little girl named Tara who sees it all.
Jump forward to present day, Graeme (Pegg) and Clive (Frost) are at Comic Con. They’re two British fan boys having the quintessential nerd-boy American road trip. After geeking out at the Con (I really want to know when they shot these scenes as I’ve never seen Comic Con look so deserted!) they head off to Area 51… or as close as you can to the base. (For those of you who aren’t total nerds, they visited an actual restaurant called Little Ale’ Inn. It’s located in a town called Rachel (population 98) which is in the middle of nowhere about two hours north of Vegas. I’ve been there twice.) They leave Rachel, and while it’s implied they’re going north, they actually go south from Rachel to Black Mailbox which has been painted white now for some time. Here, they acquire Paul, a foul-mouthed but somehow adorable little alien. Paul was trying to escape the government who he’s been living with since 1947. He’s helped them all he could (taking credit for a lot of the pop culture us nerds have come to love over the years)… but hasn’t told them some of his biggest talents. Paul has invisibility down as well as the ability to heal. He fears that if the government learns this, they’ll kill him so they can pick apart his brain.
So the unlikely heroic duo of Graeme and Clive have to get Paul back to Wyoming so that he can “phone home” and return to his planet. Needless to say, the journey of getting Paul to Wyoming is filled with unlikely yet hysterical moments and scenes that hardcore sci-fi fans will appreciate. The subtle references to Star Wars, Independence Day, Men In Black, and a dozen other films will have you snickering when those around you simply aren’t as cool as you… or as nerdy as you to get it.
All-in-all, I was thoroughly entertained. I should warn that’s not a kid friendly movie though. Yes, if you have a kid, they’re probably going to want to see it. But it’s rated R for a reason… there’s a lot of drug references, lots and lots of foul language, crude humor, and some sexual references. But it’s a damn good adult nerd comedy. One of the best I’ve seen in a long time. You put Comic Con, aliens, and ridiculously nerdy landmarks in your movie… I will go see it. As should you!
Review By: Emma Loggins