In 2003 a man walked into a bank in Erie, PA with a bomb strapped to his chest. He claimed he was being forced to wear the explosive device and that if he didn’t succeed in robbing the bank his captors would detonate it. The police caught up with him in nearby parking lot, handcuffed him, and waited around (at a safe distance) for the bomb squad to arrive. They waited too long. As the man pleaded with police as to why no one was coming to remove the bomb it exploded, blew a hole through his chest, and killed him instantly.

Sounds like ripe material for a comedy to me!

30 Minutes Or Less is the new film from Zombieland director, Ruben Fleischer, and while it isn’t actually based on the real life incident it has potential to be a very dark comedy indeed. Jesse Eisenberg plays a pizza delivery driver who has a bomb forcibly attached to his body and is then instructed to rob a bank. Aziz Ansari plays his best friend who tries to help him through this fairly difficult situation, and Danny McBride and Nick Swardson play the diabolical masterminds behind the plan.

Check out the trailer and share your thoughts below.

First thought? How has Ansari still not learned to act by now?

Second thought? This looks… interesting. It’s not loaded with laughs, but the cast is promising in that department. It’s always good to see Eisenberg playing even a little bit outside his normal safe zone, and as a straight man to Ansari’s foul-mouthed sidekick there’s definitely potential here. McBride and Swardson have both been funny in the past and only suffer when over-exposed, but they look like supporting players here thankfully. The question that’s difficult to answer from this trailer is how broadly the comedy is played.

Sometimes great comedy can come from dark and tragic places. Heathers, Four Lions, Happiness… all fantastic films that find laughs in otherwise painful and touchy subjects. Will 30 Minutes Or Less manage to do the same? And will it end with McBride’s fingers being shot off before blowing himself up in front of the school?

Find out August 12th, 2011 when 30 Minutes Or Less hits theaters.


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