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Run, Fatboy, Run

2008-06-02 08:33
What it's about:

Dennis (Simon Pegg) is an unambitious, commitment-shy shop security guard who abandoned his pregnant fiancée Libby (Thandie Newton) on their wedding day. Years later he attempts to win her back so she won't marry her new man Whit (Hank Azaria). To prove his commitment Dennis decides to get fit and run the London marathon.

What we thought of it:

Run, Fatboy, Run stars two of the funniest UK actors (Simon Pegg and Dylan Moran), not to mention The Simpsons' Hank Azaria. So why is it so thoroughly tame and stingy with the laughs? The pairing of director Edgar Wright and Pegg has produced the some of the best comedy of the last decade (Hot Fuzz 2007 and Spaced 1999), but with ex-"Friend" David Schwimmer in the director's chair, Pegg seems lost and unfocused, much like this movie.

First off, Dennis isn't – by any stretch of the imagination – fat. So training as a runner doesn't seem like the Herculean feat it's meant to be. We are supposed to identify with him as a nice guy but most of the time he comes across as a self-centered loser. Simon Pegg portrays Dennis as gormlessly charming enough to pass him off as likeable. But it still seems obvious that his rival Whit would be a far better husband and father figure for the family Dennis ditched.

Forgetting the feeble premise, there are a few chuckles and funny training scenes, but all too often things get sentimental and you're left with a slightly funnier version of some Hallmark Channel rubbish. To their credit, the cast do their best with the tepid material, but it doesn't translate to humour.

Even without the comparison to Hot Fuzz, Run, Fatboy, Run is a mediocre romantic comedy that's not ahead of the pack. Given the talent of the cast, it is a wasted opportunity and a waste of your time.

- Ivan Sadler

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A deadbeat security guard attempts to win back the girl he abandoned at the altar, to stop her marrying another man.

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