Alliteration of the day.
Rest In Peace Department, as the undertitle of this film reads, tells the story of crooked young cop Nick (Ryan Reynolds), who gets killed by his partner and doesn't go to heaven. Instead, he is transported to an afterlife in which he gets to hunt dead souls that have returned to earth.
Still with me? He has a cowboy/sheriff (Jeff Bridges) partner who's been on the job for 200 odd years and of course his outward appearance to everyone on earth is not his former self. Predictable drama and formulaic action ensues.
Instead of having one clear goal, this movie goes off the rails early. There's too many things going on with Nick: a new reality at the RIPD, a new partner, but unfinished business with his old partner, new assignments, a shady past of his own, a sudden master plan by 'undead' to open the gates of hell, et cetera.
It's one big jumble that occasionaly presents the perfect opportunity to deliver a funny line or some physical comedy. But it's few and far between, not to mention predictable and run-of-the-mill. The characters are flat, the delivery by Reynolds, Bridges and the other cast is less than 'meh' and just about everything in this production phones it in. I really can't believe anyone involved would list this one on their top 1000 of proudest achievements of their careers.
This movie was made by some very rich production companies, so of course everything here is state of the art, fast and crisp. Thank the heavens that I did not see any 3D, but I'm sure they threw a version of it out there. I'd like to think that 3D fanatics would totally wet their pants over long jumps and falls up and down elevator shafts in full 3D, but I digress. Despite all that money, equipment and all that pizzazz, the end result is soulless and utterly boring.
At the helm of this gem is German director Robert Schwentke, most famous for films like 'Flightplan' and 'RED'. Sharing the shame with Mr. Schwentke are producers Michael Fottrell, Neal Moritz and Mike Richardson. I wonder how they slept at night after wasting a reported $130,000,000 budget on a $33M return after a very short run in theatres. That's a 100 million dollar loss, folks! Oh, not to worry, let's make another installment or two of "Furious!" and make three quarters of a billion dollars there.
And that's the reality, folks. They lose some here, but win a whole lot more there. And in this never ending cycle of utter crap you get either the next sequel to Furious or a crappy, overproduced, heartless piece of sadness like RIPD.
To summarize: this was a complete waste of time. If you have any chance to not see this, I'd suggest you take it.
Pros: There's about 17 seconds of funny in there. Somewhere. Oh, and it's set in Boston.
Cons: The other 95 minutes and 43 seconds.