Delivery Man Review
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After its premiere in 2011, co-writer/director Ken Scott’s French-Canadian dramedy, Starbuck, gradually made its way to indie-minded theaters, charming audiences in one city at a time. Before most American audiences could even see the original, though, the Hollywood remake, Delivery Man, was already in the works—without the subtitles and with a more high-profile cast.

Delivery Man stars Vince Vaughn as David Wozniak, an aimless slacker who drives a delivery truck for his family’s butcher shop while trying to come up with ways to pay off his overwhelming debts. When his sometimes-girlfriend, Emma (Cobie Smulders), announces that she’s pregnant, he decides that a child could provide just the stability that his life needs.

What David doesn’t know, however, is that he’s the father of more than just one child. Twenty years ago, he earned some extra cash as an anonymous donor to a fertility clinic. Due to an error at the clinic, he became the father of 533 children—142 of whom are now seeking to have his identity disclosed. And as David’s best friend, Brett (Chris Pratt), fights for his confidentiality, David sets out to check up on some of his kids.

  
 
Delivery Man is a light and entertaining comedy about growing up, taking responsibility, and being a parent. That’s not really the kind of movie that you’d expect to star Vince Vaughn—but while the boisterous funny guy is notoriously hit-or-miss, he’s often surprisingly charming as the well-meaning new dad. Though his usual shtick is always present, threatening to bubble up to the surface at any time, there’s something undeniably lovable about his portrayal of David and his [admittedly a little too sudden] transformation from irresponsible man-child into concerned but often misguided father. And, really, when you consider the characters that he’s played over the years, his role is completely believable. It seems like a natural progression for the long string of confirmed bachelors and wild party boys that he’s portrayed.

Still, much of the film’s charm comes from the supporting cast—from Chris Pratt, who’s absolutely hilarious as David’s world-weary best friend, but also from the expansive cast of young people who give the film plenty of energy and personality. As an added bonus, they take a little bit of the pressure off Vaughn, who’s significantly less overpowering when sharing the spotlight with hundreds of supporting characters.

Delivery Man isn’t a wacky, non-stop comedy. It’s funny, but it takes plenty of time out to be sweet and heartfelt, too. And while the outrageous story is obviously more than just a little far-fetched, it rarely feels like it goes too far over the top. Of course, if you’re expecting the usual Vince Vaughn movie, you might find it to be a little too low-key—but this silly family comedy is a charming change of pace for a comic who might just be starting to grow up (though hopefully not too much).


Blu-ray Review:
For the most part, the Blu-ray release of Delivery Man includes the standard extras—stuff like a blooper reel and one deleted scene. It also offers a few minutes of Vince Vaughn’s improv in Vince Vaughn Off the Cuff. But the most interesting extra is Building Family, a lengthier feature that takes a look at the film’s casting, with an emphasis on the 142 young actors who played David’s kids. Using interviews, audition footage, outtakes, and more, it offers a look inside this unusual movie-making experience, showing how 142 random actors turned into one big happy family. So if you have a few minutes to spare after watching the movie, be sure to watch this fascinating feature, too.

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