Movie Review: 30 Minutes or Less (2011)

Posted: April 10, 2012 in Comedy
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Nick (Jesse Eisenberg) is a 20 something pizza delivery boy who drives a beat up Mustang and hates his job and his boss.  Nick’s best friend Chet (Aziz Ansari) is a substitute teacher.  They rent movies and play video games together. But then, Chet finds out that Nick has slept with his sister, Kate (Dilsad Valsaria) and that effectively ends the friendship.  Dwayne (Danny McBride) is an unemployed ne’er do well, who hates his father, the Major (Fred Ward) but dreams of inheriting his father’s lottery money someday. Dwayne and his friend Travis (Nick Swardson) hatch a plan to kill Dwayne’s father.  They end up kidnapping Nick, strapping a bomb to his body and asking him to rob a bank of 100,000 dollars. Nick is then supposed to give the money to Chango (Michael Pena) a local thug who is supposed to give Nick the code to undo the bomb vest.  Chango is supposed to take the money and kill the Major.  With nowhere else to go, and a bomb strapped to his chest, Nick goes to see Chet.  What do the two do?  Does Nick get the bomb vest removed?  Do Nick and Chet rob the bank?

This isn’t a very good movie to begin with.  It commits the cardinal sin for a comedy, it’s not very funny, even though everyone associated with it is trying very hard to do something funny.  Maybe everyone is trying a bit too hard.  As if the plot wasn’t disturbing enough, there’s an eerie similarity to a real life bank robbery, where the pizza delivery man was killed by the bomb that he was wearing.  There’s a love story here between Eisenberg and Valsaria, that doesn’t work, even the friendship between Eisenberg and Ansari seems forced What is Jesse Eisenberg doing in a low-budget bomb like this?  He was great in Zombieland and the Social Network, this is definitely a step down for him.  Ansari and the rest of the cast seem more at home in the low budget environs of this movie.  The only good thing about this movie is that it is short.

30 Minutes or Less.  Cheesy.

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