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Review: Paul

Nostalgia tripping is risking becoming it's own subgenre of film. It's a golden age for nerds: comedic geniuses like Simon Pegg riff on 80s pop-culture for hours and make watching it enjoyable. This is old hat for Pegg, who starred with Paul co-writer and co-star Nick Frost in Spaced so many years ago. Spaced pulled from the same bag of "Wars and Trek" references, and like in Paul, it didn't let the in-jokes ruin the comedic chemistry, plot and character development. Contrast this with Fanboys, another exercise in sci-fi reverence that was steeped too deep in arcana and lacked comedic wit. Fanboys featured a cameo by Seth Rogen, who gives the charming the voice to the titular alien.

Paul is the story of two aging nerds taking a road trip through some of the more alien lore rich states after a visit to comic-con. While stopped to see The Black Mailbox, a car crashes nearby that contains a lovable extra terrestrial who needs help to escape. He is being chased by pursuers from Area 51, led by an agent played by Jason Bateman (who plays a convincing tough guy). On the lam, the three amigos meet up with a charming, if not somewhat misled, RV park supervisor, played by Kristen Wiig in her best role to date.

As with all of their projects, Paul thrives on the interactions between Pegg and Frost. It's really nice to see these guys working together again, and it gives me hope to someday see a conclusion to the Blood and Cornettos trilogy.

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