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 Cedar Rapids

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Posts : 93
Join date : 2010-11-14
Age : 41
Location : Sacramento

PostSubject: Cedar Rapids   Fri Feb 25, 2011 6:47 am

“Cedar Rapids” is a dramatic comedy that takes place primarily at an insurance convention in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Starring roles are filled by Ed Helms as insurance guru Tim Lippe, John C. Riley as insurance zealot Dean Ziegler, Anne Heche as Joan Ostrowski-Fox, and Isiah Whitlock as the “gangsta” Ronald Wilkes. All the lead actors are insurance reps of some sort.

Tim Lippe works as an insurance salesman at BrownStar Insurance in a small town. His boss dies just before the annual ASMI Double Diamond Award Convention in Cedar Rapids. Tim is selected to represent BrownStar and runs into some typical small-town meets big-city problems upon his arrival. It starts with the working girl Bree, played by Alia Shawkat, and then enters Dean, Joan, and Ronald into the picture. They encounter an abundance of alcohol, drugs, sex, bribes, parties, and religion. The convention gets them to a hotdog eating contest, rock climbing wall, and into the swimming pool. BrownStar is a two time Double Diamond Award winner, and Lippe is expected to bring home the trophy for a third term. Will he?

The characters in “Cedar Rapids” work very well together as an acting team. It is like watching “The Office” and seeing how the paper people work together in that show. The story is very simple for this movie, but it is told in a humorous and smooth format. The lines seemed easy for the cast, which made the film much more believable and subtle. Hearing Tim sing was quite astonishing. Viewers don’t always get to see certain sides of the characters, and Cedar Rapids gives viewers much of what they didn’t know they wanted. These insurance reps could pull off a road trip and keep the audience entertained for hours. Great work is done by all the leads.

Certain moments will last in my movie memory. The terms used and doors set up for Tim to walk through were priceless. The rock climbing wall and pool disasters will keep you laughing all the way out of the theatre. These were all in the “ASMI-azing Race” put on with the convention. Tim and crew also end up at a party in rural Cedar Rapids and the substance inside the evening will remain in memory.

There is a hint of Will Farrell from “Old School” in watching “Cedar Rapids.” If viewers are fans of “Office Space,” “Little Miss Sunshine,” or “Tommy Boy” then they won’t be disappointed. The R rating is for language, adult situations and drug content. The rating is a bit rough for the story. The truthful situations, characters, and dialogue in “Cedar Rapids” let us believe good stories can still be told without having to sit through shock and awe. Granted the movie was anti-climactic and didn’t have the jaw dropping moments of a “Hall Pass” style comedy, but it was simple and well done on a visibly small budget. “Cedar Rapids” earns 3 out of 5 Cyclones.

-J B
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