I went in to The Delivery Man with some trepidation, because I had seen the French-Canadian film Starbuck only seven months earlier. The Delivery Man has the same director as Starbuck, and, from what I could see in the trailer, some scenes were line-for-line the same. Although I did laugh a few times throughout the film, overall I liked Starbuck better – but your perception of Delivery Man will depend on if you’ve seen that already or not.
David Wozniak (Vince Vaughn) donated sperm to a fertility clinic in the early ’90s, just a few times – okay, about 690 times. The clinic was supposed to be selective about how many times it reused his sperm, but instead, 533 children were born of it – and today, about 190 of those want to know his identity, even though he signed a confidentiality agreement. His inexperienced lawyer friend, Brett (Chris Pratt), is excited to take on his case, and eventually they file a countersuit against the clinic, mostly because David is in debt to some mafia-type people and needs the money. In the meantime, though, David starts looking through the profiles of these children, and decides to become a “guardian angel” to a few of them – and realizes that maybe he’s missing out on being a father after all.
I could go on and on all day comparing the two movies, but I’m not going to do that here. The one main difference I will say is that in Starbuck, I laughed throughout the whole movie, and Delivery Man only brought me a few chuckles. I actually thought Chris Pratt steals the show more than Vaughn – it looks like he’s packed on a few pounds for his role as a dad of four, as well as Vaughn’s lawyer, who is constantly telling him that fatherhood is work and Vaughn is not cut out for it. His kids are cute, too, and were the source of a few laughs because of their antics.
Maybe see this movie. I’ll admit that I’m biased – one of the funniest scenes in the movie, where Pratt’s character accidentally admits something on national TV, didn’t make me laugh because the exact same thing happened in Starbuck, down to the punch line. Even if I hadn’t seen Starbuck, though, I didn’t laugh as much as I normally do during a Vince Vaughn movie. Wedding Crashers is one of my favorite Vaughn movies, and The Internship lately wasn’t bad either – so you can’t charge me with not being a Vaughn fan – but I didn’t think he did that well here. I wonder why they decided to make an American version of this film, too, but my guess is that they wanted to bring this movie to the masses that might not usually pick up a foreign film; unfortunately, my recommendation is either to see that film, or to avoid it whatsoever if you don’t want to be spoiled for Delivery Man.
The Delivery Man is currently in theaters, and is rated PG-13 with a runtime of 103 minutes. 2.5 stars out of 5.