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R.I.P.D. (review)

Written by Phil Hay and Matt Manfredi
Directed by Robert Schwentke
Starring Ryan Reynolds, Jeff Bridges and Mary-Louise Parker
Roy: Those coyotes made love to my skull.

Nick: I hope they got both eyes.

So do we. It is rare that a film is so awful that I have trouble writing about it. This is the case with Robert Schwentke’s R.I.P.D.

The film follows Nick (Ryan Reynolds), a police officer killed by his partner (Kevin Bacon), as he joins the Rest in Peace Department; a team of deceased police officers who capture the souls of those refusing to cross over to the other side.

Nick’s R.I.P.D. partner is Roy (Jeff Bridges), a man who was killed and eaten by a pack of coyotes (a running gag that is never funny) in the 1800’s. Unfortunately for the films audience, the coyotes didn’t swallow his soul after they had their way with his corpse. Bridges is absolutely unbearable in the role. He painfully channels his role of Rooster Cogburn from 2010’s TRUE GRIT, using such a strong accent that it is at times nearly impossible to understand what he is saying.

Mary-Louise Parker costars as Proctor, the head of the R.I.P.D. Even Parker, who is one of my favourite actresses, is excruciatingly annoying in the film. Parker’s character serves two purposes, to threaten R.I.P.D. officers by reporting them to the Eternal Affairs department (one of the few jokes that made me chuckle) and as a romantic interest for Bridges’ Roy (cue scenes with no chemistry).


Other scenes that garner a rare chuckle are those in which others see Roy and Nick when they return to earth. When they look at each other they see Jeff Bridges and Ryan Reynolds, but when others look at them they see Roy as supermodel Marisa Miller and Nick as an elderly Asian man (played by James Hong). But like many others in the film, this joke wears out quickly and is no longer funny by the time the film crosses the halfway point.

The film was also weakened by it’s 3D. I sighed when, after picking up my ticket, I was given a pair of 3D glasses. I’ve never liked the 3D craze and this film is a perfect example why. It is obvious that a film like this is 3D for the sole reason of making more money, as the 3D contributes absolutely nothing to the film.


As much as I tried to enjoy R.I.P.D., I was unable to. It is extremely difficult to suspend your disbelief as much as you need to in order to buy this premise, when the action and CGI are this weak, the performances are this grating and the script is just plain bad. R.I.P.D almost killed me.


Your turn!

How many sheep would you give R.I.P.D.?


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