Due Date

Rated 3.0

A sardonic road-trip/buddy-buddy picture ought to be a sure-fire thing, even more so when you’ve got Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis in the lead roles and Todd Phillips (The Hangover, Starsky & Hutch) directing. Not so, however, with Due Date, which manages to make the requisite rambunctiousness and picaresque plot into an oddly cynical and rather mean-spirited enterprise. As it turns out, the steadfast comic performances of Downey and Galifianakis as mismatched traveling companions are as close as this roistering wreck of a movie can come to having a saving grace or two. Jamie Foxx, as the Downey character’s ambiguously devoted pal, and Juliette Lewis, better than usual even though typecast as a spaced out dispenser of medical marijuana, have a redeeming moment or two as well. The low-brow ribaldry emitted by the film’s contrasting fuddy-duddies, the straight-laced father-to-be (Downey) and the furry freak with wacky acting aspirations (Galifianakis), serves well enough as sketchy entertainment, but the increasingly extreme automotive antics mandated by the script take the two guys’ stories beyond the bounds of humorously absurd nonesense and into something merely grim and absurd. Feather River Cinemas, Paradise Cinema 7 and Tinseltown. Rated PG-13