Delivery Man (2013)

You can almost never trust sperm to impregnate somebody when you want it too.

David Wozniak (Vince Vaughn) is a 40-something-year-old slacker that doesn’t have much ambition in his life. That would be fine and all if there weren’t others tied into his life, but sadly for those poor folks, that isn’t the case. He works at a family-owned meat market that he takes too long to do; owes over $80,000 to the mob; has a girlfriend (Cobie Smulders) that he isn’t settling down with yet, despite her constant-nagging; and worst of all, he has his own kid on the way. But once everything in his life seems to be crumbling down, he gets some crazy news that some-odd years ago, when he donated sperm, he birthed 600 children, and out of those 600, 100 want to know who he is. There’s all sorts of laws granting anonymity that have been broken here, hence why Wozniak enlists his buddy/lawyer Brett (Chris Pratt) to handle the case, which he is more than willing to do, only on one condition though: That David not see, meet, or share any sort of connection with these 100 or so kids. Sound easy enough, that is all until David starts actually tracking these kids down, and getting closer to them more than they, especially him, ever expected to.

I’ve never seen the original movie that this is a remake of (Starbuck), however, from what I hear, it’s a pretty good movie. Sounds like something I’ll definitely have to check out in the near-future, but as for right now, I guess this’ll do. And that is not a nice sentiment whatsoever.

The thought of Andy Dwyer being a father, scares me half-to-death.
The thought of Andy Dwyer being a father, scares me half-to-death.

Like most U.S.-made remakes of foreign flicks, the plots sound interesting and very promising, but for the American mainstream-audience, that doesn’t matter. Just as long as they get plenty of goofy moments where people hurt themselves, say something stupid and/or show that they have a heart, then all is well and fine with the world. However, we need substance to a tale like this, which it does not in fact have, despite trying so damn hard to throw the idea at us that it does. The constant shoving in our faces of how much of a heart it has, eventually, began to get tiring and repetitive, as if the movie knew that it wanted to be more than just your average, Vince Vaughn-comedy, but instead, have more to say about growing up, accepting life, falling in love and reconnecting with long, lost family members.


Don’t get me wrong, many movies out there have done exactly what this flick is trying to do, it’s just that they’ve done so a lot more efficiently and a lot less obvious. For instance, there’s a switch about somewhere half-way through where instead of being a broad-comedy about a guy accepting the fact that he has over 600 kids due to his sperm being passed around more than a whore in a brothel, we get an emotional movie that tries to be compelling by taking an “owning-money-to-mob” subplot, mixing it in with the whole “courtcase” fiasco, and also using the kids as a crutch to fall back on and pay attention to once things get a little crazy. It doesn’t work and while it does seem a bit mixed-up in what it wants to do, it’s pretty clear what it’s trying to say: Life is beautiful.

Yay. Actually, I meant to say “yawn” again. My bad.

And that’s pretty much all there is to this flick, in a nutshell. While there were bits that had me chuckling here and there, most of the comedy seems stale and uninspired, as if the creators knew they had a neat idea on their hands here, but decided to just roll with that, rather than adding some really nifty, witty pieces of material. Rather instead, the movie relies on the talent to let these comedic-moments hit us where it hurts, but they just can’t help but fall victim to what seems like another lame script, used to manipulate families into seeing around the Holiday season. Damn, Hollywood and their smart-ass, money-making ways and ideas.

I’ve said it before in my Internship review, and I’ll sure as hell say it again: Vince Vaughn needs to grow-up and begin to act his age. I get that this is probably something he doesn’t want to hear from anyone (let alone some random, two-bit blogger), and won’t bother Hollywood since they continue to cast him in these “relatively-young, free-wheeling dude” roles, but it’s starting to get tiresome to see him play the same roles, almost to no avail whatsoever, and actually worrisome, especially considering that this is about strike four in-a-row for this guy when it comes to starring in these vehicles, and not being able to do much with ’em. Sure, he’s pleasant and talented enough to make these movies charming in the slightest bit, but you have to begin to wonder just when he’s finally going to wake up, start smoking some of that experimental-stuff and realize that he needs a career-change by picking better, more daring-roles that not only show how much of a talent he is to behold, but that he is over-40, and he is embracing it.

He can't settle down with THAT?!?!? He's not just a dummy, but he's entirely unsympathetic.
He can’t settle down with THAT?!?!? He’s not just a dummy, but he’s entirely unsympathetic.

Here though, as David Wozniak, some will probably be confused by how “un-Vaughn” here he is, which is both a sin and a blessing. Reason why it’s a blessing is because he’s at least finally doing something where he isn’t constantly ranting at a-mile-a-second; but a sin, because he’s just bland, bland, bland. Wozniak seems like a likable-enough dude to care enough for in this movie to be get behind, but after awhile, it just seems like the guy really is a loser, and probably should only say “hi” to these kids and walk away. I don’t mean that to be or sound mean, but the guy just doesn’t really seem like he has much going on for him other than the fact that he’s played by a phoning-it-in Vince Vaughn, and that’s that.

Even Cobie Smulders tries her damn-near hardest, but even she can’t seem to get past the fact that the script just wants her to be hot, pregnant and always bitching at David for something new, each and every day. Sort of like all women, right men? The only one who really gets by with this script and his character is Chris Pratt as Brett, Wozniak’s buddy/lawyer, who is amusing in his depressed-outlook on life, which is charming enough to get by because of Pratt’s charm, but eventually seems played-out. That is, until a strange turn-of-events occur and we get a movie that focuses more on his story, and less of Wozniak’s, in which Pratt takes center-stage, show that he can be hilarious without being over-the-top dumb and goofy and also give us a look at what we can come to expect this summer with him in Guardians of the Galaxy. It’s coming up soon, people! So be ready! Has nothing to do with this movie, but hey, that’s all I got, folks.

Consensus: An interesting premise for sure, but still mawkish, manipulative and uninvolving in the way it continues to hammer away at the fact that yes, Delivery Man is a movie about growing up and other important themes of life that we must accept and live with, but yet, doesn’t show them in a different, effective way. Instead, it just tells us and ends up doing nothing.

3 / 10 = Crapola!!


Photo’s Credit to:


  1. I’m so annoyed they decided to americanize the superior version, Starbuck. It’s a little pandering as well, but I will probably not be seeing this based on this good review, or the 37% its got on RT. lol

    • I have yet to see the original, but one of these days I will. However, it seemed like another gem-of-a-flick that got turned into utter, American garbage. Like most things foreign.

  2. THIS is what that Starbuck movie is about? Yikes. What a stupid premise….
    Vince Vaughn just can’t win lately. If is does his usual schtick, he is criticized. When he does, he is bland, like you say.

    • Yeah, he’s sort of in a “lose-lose” situation right now. I don’t know how he’s going to shake it off, but maybe one day he’ll wake up and finally get past it all? Maybe?

  3. I have heard that the original has to be worlds apart from this one… I don’t get why they would remake a movie that has already been a success anyway. I mean if special effects have evolved I get it, like Carrie, which I liked, but in this case I don’t get it.

  4. “Starbuck” is very good film and part of what made it great was the strength of the actors, notably Patrick Huard in the Vince Vaughn role and the writing. That being said, I know that Ken Scott, writter/director of “Starbuck” also adapted and directed the remake, but perhaps some sensilbilities and cultural references that made this film work in Quebec did not resonate with an American public… that being said, I’ll have to see the remake to have a better sense of the film but that’s the feeling I’m getting from your review and others.

    • Remakes don’t usually work, and when they feature the same writer/director, it’s, oddly enough, even worse than your normal results. There’s some sort of curse on that or something.

  5. Nice review. It seems like you are spot on with the rest of the critics out there. No plans to see this one, myself. I guess Vince Vaughn has an aversion to being in anything good, huh?

  6. Great review Dan! I saw the trailer in the theatres and the audience was eating up the shtick. I have to say I was falling for it too because I like comedies that have a heart but based on what you said, it’s a pretty empty attempt. I’m not really into VV’s brand of comedy although I did like Dodgeball. The last Vaughn movies I’ve watched were quite good … Mr. & Mr. Smith and Into The Wild where he’s only in a handful of scenes. 🙂

  7. I’ve actually been meaning to see Starbuck for a while. Vince Vaughn could never reach the level of awesomeness of Patrick Huard (the main guy in Starbuck). I may have not seen the original yet but its simply impossible…its not something I picture him doing. I might not see Delivery Man after your review but it has reminded me to check out Starbuck 🙂 Cool review!

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