30 Minutes or Less review

Eisenberg is in good form in this scrappy action comedy. It won't garner him another Oscar nomination however, but he is still very agreeable playing a doofus way out of his element with inept villains. As a pizza delivery guy he is forced into robbing a bank by clumsy "entrepeneurs" McBride and Swardson. What makes him commit the crime? A bomb of course. It's strapped on to him and timed to go off in only a few hours.

With the clock ticking he still manages to say a nice farewell to his true love (Vadsaria), the twin sister to his best friend (Ansari) whom he coerces into helping him in his endeavour. They not only rob the bank but have to deal with a nasty pimp (Pena) as well as the two idiots responsible for his predicament. Double crossings, shootings and car chases are all added to the mix in this fast moving caper.

It's very much a hit and miss affair though. The characters are too sleazy and lack charm, and the attempts at comedy fall flat on occasion. But the players are so spirited and there is such an air of mischievous energy to the proceedings that come the end one's misgivings have been swiftly swept aside. This preposterous scenario was on the Black List, one of the best unproduced screenplays inside Hollywood. Now that it has come to fruition should we be grateful? Yes - but don't tell anyone. A guilty pleasure.

Official Site
30 Minutes or Less at IMDb

Stuart O'Connor is the Managing Editor of Screenjabber, the movie review website he co-founded with Neil Davey far too many years ago. He likes all genres, as long as the film is good (although he does enjoy the occasional bad "guilty pleasure"), and drinks way too much coffee.

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