2017 will see me watching some films that I have never seen before and then writing about them. It will be a series of columns cleverly called, “2017 First Watch.”
Before Deadpool became a big hit, the continued belief in Ryan Reynolds from big studios probably seemed like a giant mystery to people. He had yet to star in a major production that was either a significant success with critics or the box office, but he kept seeming to get chance after chance.
One of those said chances came in the form of R.I.P.D.. The concept is basically Men in Black, but instead of aliens and secret government agencies it’s dead people and dead cops. The movie basically a failure in every way unfortunately.
Comparing it to the imperfect yet fun Men in Black actually is quite useful in understanding why it failed. For starters, Ryan Reynolds on his best day will never be 1997 Will Smith. This film though is really Ryan Reynolds on his worst day though.
Reynolds is forced to play the recently deceased despondent ex-cop who also has to randomly play the charming Ryan Reynolds-type who is new to this whole world of the un-dead. It does not really work at all, and the film basically fails right from the jump as a result.
It is tough to walk the line that they forced Reynolds to walk here though. It would be inhuman for this guy to immediately accept his death and the fact that he will never be with his wife again. On the other hand, this is a ridiculously silly movie that needs to get to the jokes as soon as possible. That should have been recognized early on in the planning stages of this film.
It clearly was not though, and this film is just a mess as a result.
Recommendation: Overall, this movie really can be safely avoided. Jeff Bridges tries to have fun with his 1800s (his character never does get more specific) cowboy character, but it is nowhere near enough to come close to salvage this complete misfire. I cannot believe they spent $130 million just to make this one.