Naive small town insurance agent Tim Lippe has never left his hometown. He’s never stayed at a hotel and he’s certainly never experienced anything like Cedar Rapids. But when the top salesman accidently hangs himself, the company sends Tim to represent them at the annual insurance convention in Cedar Rapids. Well, to be truthful, Tim has to more than represent them, he has to bring home the coveted Two Diamond Award.
For a guy who always plays everything by the book, is honest and doesn’t drink, Cedar Rapids is going to be like nothing he’s ever imagined.
On arriving he discovers he’s sharing a room with convention veteran Ronald Wilkes who lets him know that due to a booking mishap, the one guy Tim’s boss told him to steer clear of, party animal Dean Ziegler, will be sleeping on the couch. Throw in horny but married with kids Joan Ostrowski-Fox who sees the Cedar Rapids weekend as a kind of hall pass, and Tim is in for a weekend that he will never forget.
Of course, any DVD that comes with a cover as goofy as Cedar Rapids does, you immediately put in a box, when you add John C Reilly to the mix, you know it’s going to cross a few lines and offend a few people.
And it does. It also misses the mark on so many occasions, using poor excuses for humour instead of writing some decent one liners.
But when you factor in the fact that this is a comedy that mixes up infidelity, drinking, drugs, bribery, prostitution and fraud and manages to come out looking like a buddy movie with a morality tale attached, you know that something special has transpired.
The old saying “it’s the journey not the destination’ might not totally apply here, as the ending of the film will be the only saving grace for the whole movie for some people, but for those of you who love Reilly or films like Cyrus or Step Brothers, then Cedar Rapids is for you.
Reviewed by: Jonathan Read