It’s not easy meeting Mr Right. Just ask Martha. She makes the effort for her man, cooking him a special surprise dinner and he returns the favour with his own surprise, showing up with another woman, so it’s no surprise to anyone when the day ends with her lobbing a saucepan at him. Thing is, Martha doesn’t realise how dangerous she is, even without access to specialist equipment.
Fully aware of how dangerous he is but equally eccentric is the man in the purple shirt who knocks on the door of the woman who contracted him to kill her husband to inform her that he believes that murder is wrong, then dons his red clown nose and shoots her dead. Their fixers understandably unhappy with this deviation from the job as planned, Clown Nose’s former partner, Hopper, is now assigned to eliminate him.
Having retreated to her “drunk closet,” Martha’s housemates stage an intervention and take her out on the town, hitting New Orleans looking to party, but when she bumps into the eccentric guy in the convenience store and he asks her out, she suddenly sees him as Mr Right, thinking he’s only kidding when he tells her that the reason he had to duck out to the parking lot for a moment was to kill a guy, but as their relationship becomes more serious, so does the danger she is in.
Directed by Rage‘s Paco Cabezas from a script by Chronicle‘s Max Landis, Mr Right is ridiculous and it’s fun; this means, ergo, that it’s also ridiculous fun, a messed up love story for messed up people which defies rational thought tied to an unashamedly over-the top action film carried by an ensemble cast clearly having a ball as they try to take each other down or just find cover.
Leading the pack are The Voices‘ Anna Kendrick as Martha and Moon‘s Sam Rockwell as Francis “Clown Nose” Munch, she impulsive without any filtering to protect herself or others, he the devastating dancing hitman who found a conscience under a pile of rubble in Serbia when his partner Hopper (Planet of the Apes‘ Tim Roth) dropped a building on him.
Kendrick and Rockwell are effortlessly charismatic and adorable as they rack up dates of dodging bullets and knife throwing, the perfect folie à deux as they each find someone who embraces their madness without judgement, a romantic comedy with a hefty bodycount and double crosses.
For not only is Hopper looking for Francis, there are also mob boss brothers Richard and Von (Hell on Wheels‘ Anson Mount and Sinister‘s James Ransone) who had hoped to hire Francis but now find themselves in an escalating war against him as he eliminates gunmen as fast as they can recruit them, forcing them to pull in the borderline psychopath Johnny Moon (Eadweard‘s Michael Eklund).
Cabezas knows how to handle action, Landis’ dialogue is snappy and funny, and if the film is sometimes uneven and doesn’t hold up to rational analysis it’s to miss the point that it’s a hugely entertaining and quirky fantasy of music, dancing and gunplay for those who colour outside the lines and don’t quite fit in the expected boxes.