One film showing at this year's Edinburgh Film Festival that I was hugely anticipating was the hit-man action-comedy Mr. Right, starring Anna Kendrick, Sam Rockwelland Tim Roth, and it did not disappoint. This is a fast and furious crowd-pleasing delight from start to finish.

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After going through a pretty rough breakup at the start of the film, the very rambunctious and outgoing Martha (Anna Kendrick) bumps into an even more rambunctious and outgoing guy (Sam Rockwell) at the local store. After they gel and spend the entire day with one another, Martha really believes that this guy is her Mr Right - he has an odd sense of humour like her and is as crazy as she is too. However, what she doesn't know is that this guy, Francis, is actually a retired hitman and has a lot of enemies after him - namely, his old partner and mentor Hopper (Tim Roth). Upon learning of her seemingly "perfect" new boyfriend's lifestyle, the pair's newfound love is really put to the test when she gets caught up in the action when Francis' past comes back to bite.
We've seen plenty of hit-man comedies over the years, they especially boomed in the early 2000's, post-Tarantino. Mr. Right is by no means anything unique and Max Landis' script certainly has echoes of a more tame, B-rate flick from the aforementioned Pulp Fiction director. The screenplay is audacious in its quirkiness and its "cutesy" approach but, from the writer of Chronicle and American Ultra, we'd expect nothing less; it's absurd and wacky but it's massively fun at the same time, wearing its influences on its sleeve and never taking itself too seriously to be devoid of just having fun. Landis' writing is sharp and witty and the film doesn't stop throwing really fresh and funny humour our way from the off. However, what these films rely on are its characters and something Mr. Right does satisfyingly well is create likable, well-realised characters and relations - albeit if all a little contrived but, for such an outlandish and grandiose hit-man comedy, it can be forgiven for its perhaps somewhat superficial and more whimsical approach to the material.

The acting is great too; Rockwell and Kendrick are outstanding together, with such brilliant character dynamics, working exceptionally well off of one another, and there's some remarkable support from a very fun and entertaining Tim Roth too, making for a very strong powerhouse trio of leads. There is such believable, palpable chemistry between the cast and Kendrick and Rockwell are a killer couple. The two just work so well with one another - both their callous, crazy personalities fit together so nicely - and it's a true delight to watch them both; you invest in their relationship and root for them to succeed, so infected by their charisma and their heart. The latter is a true highlight as Francis; you really believe him and root for him as this badass hitman with a high reputation and Rockwell delivers big on the action and the laughs - he's hilarious and his performance is just perfect here - the actor brings enough charm and warmth to the character to win the audience over. Roth gives a more fun, less serious performance than we're used to seeing from him too and it's a very welcomed change; everyone just looks like they're having a blast and it really adds to conveying the fun of the picture as a whole.
Mr. Right is perhaps flawed for its contrived nature but it's also a film that is very self-aware and doesn't take itself seriously. Like its crazy characters, this is a film that is as outlandish and wacky as Francis and Martha yet just as charming and fun. Director Paco Cabezas delivers big on both laughs and action, with lots of violent, brutal and well-executed action sequences that are exhilarating to watch. The film does begin to lose a little steam as we approach the finale (which comes in guns blazing for how over-the-top and just insane it is) and it's perhaps a little too cute and quirky for its own good at times - Kendrick has a couple of moments which can begin to grate on the nerves a little. But, for the most part, Mr. Right is a blast; it's a slick, well-made film that is visually sleek and gorgeous but it's also a riotous action-comedy that is hilarious, violent and just ridiculously fun.

VERDICT:

Kendrick and Rockwell make a killer couple in the superb Mr. Right, an action-comedy that delivers big on both violent action and hilarious, gut-busting comedy; it's a ridiculously fun, feel-good crowd-pleasing delight from start to finish.



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About the Author

Awais Irfan
Founder of Oasis Awais, and avid lover of life, Awais Irfan's love of writing and film is unequivocal. Ever since he was a little kid, he has loved the cinematic experience; so much so, he is studying Film Production in Glasgow and hopes to be the next "big thing" in directing.

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