The only prerequisite for a comedy to work, is that it must make the audience laugh often. It doesn’t need to be a laugh a minute, but it should have steady laughs throughout. Paul has a great cast and some terrific CGI, but its lacks any classic laughs.
Two English guys, Graeme Willy (Simon Pegg) and Clive Gollings (Nick Frost) are in America to visit Comic Con and to see some iconic alien themed landmarks. They as luck would have it meet an alien named Paul. Paul is being chased by authorities, who have been experimenting on him. Graeme, Clive and Paul begin to bond and they try to escape the suits who are on their trail.
Paul boasts a big and talented cast, such as Seth Rogen, Jason Bateman, Bill Hader and Sigourney Weaver. Even with two likeable leads like Pegg and Frost aswell, Paul is a big disappointment. The film feels very subdued and a somewhat safe attempt by Pegg and Frost. Hot Fuzz and Shaun Of the Dead were full of cursing, violence and most importantly classic dialogue. Paul lacks any energy or magic. I would honestly say I laughed twice throughout the entire film and even at that I didn’t laugh loudly.
The CGI on Seth Rogen’s alien character is superb. Paul is a well designed character visually and script wise. He’s a potentially fun creation stuck in a dull film. Dull might seem unfair considering all the great CGI and crazy car chases. But when a comedy is this unfunny, it becomes dull regardless of all the fancy tricks included.
I enjoyed elements of Paul but I ultimately felt disappointed when I left the cinema. One scene has Pegg and Frost rejoicing at making it to America, claiming that they’ve made it. Well if they continue making films like this, they’ll lose the fan base they’ve created.