“Paul” is the “Citizen Kane” of nerd humor, the movie all other nerd movies will be compared to for years to come. “Paul” stars beloved geeks (I use the term Geeks with love) Simon Pegg and Nick Frost as a pair of sci-fi loving Brits on holiday at Comic-Con who decide to road trip to their favorite alien hot spots. Along the way they meet a real alien named Paul (Seth Rogan) who takes them on an exciting and very funny adventure.
Paul was directed by Greg Mottola whose nerd credentials include “Superbad” and the cult romance “Adventureland.” Mottola infuses “Paul” with unexpected heart and sensitivity that coexists surprisingly well with uproarious R-rated gags. The script comes from stars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost whose geek humor knowledge is seemingly limitless. You will have to see “Paul” twice to capture all of the nerd references packed tightly into the 104 minute runtime.
The geek chic extends to the supporting cast including Jason Bateman from the cult TV series “Arrested Development,” Joe Lo Truglio from the cult comedy troupe “The State” and Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader who bring SNL’s loyal fan base to the film. Finally, “Paul” ends with a cameo that the trailer spoils but I will not. Let’s just call it a shocking and gory appearance by a geek goddess and leave it at that.
“Paul” is an uproarious R-rated comedy that manages to be funny and sweet without lapsing into cloying or pandering. Much of the film’s surprising maturity comes from the voice of Seth Rogan who brings his typical foul mouth shtick to the film but also a newfound warmth and tenderness to his voice. Rogan offers a reassuring vocal performance that grounds “Paul” within its wacky alien universe of geek references and broad physical humor.
Easy to be one of the funniest movies you will see in 2011, “Paul” is a brilliantly funny sci fi comedy that never fails to be outlandish and raunchy and sweet at once. Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and the voice of Seth Rogan are terrific comic trio and with all of the geek cred they bring to the film you have the makings of a cult classic to which all other nerd movies will be compared.