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Originally published Tuesday, August 21, 2012 at 12:04 AM

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'Hit & Run': Car-chase comedy loudly spins out of control

A movie review of "Hit and Run," an action comedy about a reformed bank robber (Dax Shepard) in the witness-protection program who winds up running from the crooked compatriots he ratted out. Kristen Bell co-stars as his girlfriend.

Special to The Seattle Times

Movie review 1 stars

'Hit & Run,' with Dax Shepard, Kristen Bell, Bradley Cooper, Tom Arnold, Michael Rosenbaum. Directed by Shepard and David Palmer, from a screenplay by Shepard. 100 minutes. Rated R for pervasive language including sexual references, graphic nudity, some violence and drug content. Several theaters.

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Can't believe you gave this such a poor review. I saw a sneak preview of it a few weeks... MORE
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Can you say "shrill"?

No. Not loud enough.


Much better. Now you've got an idea of how it is with "Hit & Run."

There are shrill exchanges between writer-director-star Dax Shepard and his co-star/real-life-fianceé Kristen Bell as they self-administer couples therapy behind the wheels of a variety of fast automobiles.

They have problems. They have issues. They have lots of stuff to get off their chests as they rocket across the California landscape with unsavory, trigger-happy characters in hot pursuit.

Then there is Tom Arnold, playing a frantic federal marshal shrilly chasing Shepard and Bell in a dorky minivan, bumblingly mishandling his service pistol and putting unintended holes in the van and other objects.

Add to all that the whining of smoking tires doing doughnuts on roadways and runways — round and round and round they go; where they stop, nobody ... cares.

Shepard gathered up a bunch of his best friends (and fiancée) and put them in a movie about a reformed bank robber in the witness- protection program (hence his marshal guardian) who winds up running from the crooked compatriots he ratted out (Bradley Cooper being the main one) and his girlfriend's insanely jealous ex-boyfriend (Michael Rosenbaum).

Vroom, vroom — off they go in a series of indifferently staged chase scenes interwoven with high-decibel blather about the need for trust in a relationship (she's miffed that he neglected to tell her about his lawbreaking past, etc.) and about how a man can reform and change.

Earplugs, please. And wake me when it's over.

Soren Andersen:

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