Rick (Owen Wilson) and Fred (Jason Sudeikis) are best friends who have a lot in common, including the fact that they have each been married for many years. But when the two men begin to show signs of restlessness at home, their wives (Jenna Fischer, Christina Applegate) take a bold approach to revitalizing their individual marriages: granting them a “hall pass,” one week of freedom to do whatever they want…no questions asked. At first, it sounds like a dream come true for Rick and Fred. But it isn’t long before they discover that their expectations of the single life-and themselves-are completely, and hilariously, out of sync with reality.
Rick and Fred are two men that have passed their prime, but refuse to believe it. Displaying mock bravado and a punched up sense of machismo, these over 35 guys think they could still pull chicks and mix with a younger crew if not for their wives. Fed up of their proccupation with sex, the boys’ wives give them a ‘Hall Pass’ from marriage, meaning that for one week, they can do whatever they want as, for that week – they are not married.
As you can imagine, things do not go as planned and their dreams of being ‘single’ for one week turns into a series of misadventures and misdemeanors.
Maturity is not a word often associated with the films of The Farrelly Brothers. Throughout their careers, the duo has created some really funny and occasionally poignant films. 2007’s The Heartbreak Kid was the last time that the brothers had a movie on the big screen and it has been worth the wait.
Riding on the success of adult mainstream comedies of late, the film owes a lot to the Judd Apatow/Todd Philips type of comedy rather than the slapstick shtick that was the style in their earlier movies. Although there are moments of pure gross out humour, the comedy here is presented in a lighter tone, not as mean spirited and a lot more relatable. Especially if you are married.
The term ‘Hall Pass’ might not mean much to an Australian audiences, it makes little difference as we can all relate to wanting something that we can’t have, blaming something for realising a dream or a goal has passed us by long ago.
Owen Wilson and Jason Sudeikis are perfectly cast as the male leads. Their characters’ obsession with the internet and females are totally realistic and, although the situation might be wacky, at no time did their choices feel false or unrealistic. The wives roles aren’t just one-dimensional either. Jenna Fischer and Christina Applegate hold their own, giving us a glimpse into what it’s like for the long suffering wives living with these men-childs.
Hall Pass is a comedy that wears it’s heart on it’s sleeve and still has enough gross out moments that will satisfy any cinema going audience. There is plenty to laugh at and to laugh with.
I give this film 3 1/2 out of 5
Hall Pass opens in cinemas on Thursday 3rd of March in Australia