A mismatched couple hit the road, searching for a wrongfully-mailed package, in this misguided comic-romance. Despite a genial cast, this straight-to-video movie offers little that's new; it instead makes a classic like IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT (1934) look more innovative than ever.
Minnesota college freshman Wyatt Trips (Paul Rudd) is frustrated that longtime girlfriend Kimberly (Christine Taylor) won't go all the way. Wrongfully thinking that Kimberly, who is 1000 miles away at her Memphis college, is cheating on him, Wyatt gets drunk at a local strip bar and meets
student/exotic-dancer Ivy Miller (Reese Witherspoon). With her help, he sends a vicious break-up letter to Kimberly, via overnight delivery, only to learn that the "other man" he suspected she was seeing is actually a dog she's taking care of.
With only one day to stop the package's delivery, and with every imaginable obstacle in their path, panic-stricken Wyatt and hard-boiled Ivy hit the road. They attempt to steal the letter back from a slow-witted, Global Express driver (Larry Drake), without any luck. Later the couple deal with
uncooperative airport personnel, the destruction of Ivy's car, and, amidst much squabbling, Ivy's developing affection for the lovelorn Wyatt. After being arrested for ditching their tab at a roadside diner, they accidentally blow up the Global Express truck containing the package---which still
doesn't stop the driver from his mission. Making it to the Memphis campus at the last possible moment, Wyatt swings into action and stops the delivery---only to realize that he's in love with Ivy, and Kimberly has been unfaithful after all. Allowing his venomous letter to be delivered, Ivy and
Wyatt ponder their next destination together.
This "comic" road-movie contains no real laughs, but it does have a carload of generic, sitcom-like plot twists. The premise, of course, couldn't be sustained if any of the lead characters had a lick of common sense---or if Wyatt would simply make a calm, rational phone call, explaining the
situation. The filmmakers clearly banked on the fact that the lead performers are so charming that the viewer wouldn't take the time to notice the cliches trotted out. Rudd and Witherspoon do indeed have natural appeal, but they're given little chance to show it here, as director Jason Bloom piles
one outlandish situation onto another. And, in spite of the surface tension between the characters, it's evident from the first that they are going to wind up together. Though filled to overflowing with "screwball" developments (when attempting to take a flight at one point, Wyatt is instead taken
hostage by a wanted killer) and physical slapstick (Wyatt is dragged down a highway until the backside of his pants disappear), OVERNIGHT DELIVERY's strained attempts at comic quirkiness only serve to irritate. (Violence, sexual situations, profanity.)
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- Released: 1998
- Rating: PG-13
- Review: A mismatched couple hit the road, searching for a wrongfully-mailed package, in this misguided comic-romance. Despite a genial cast, this straight-to-video movie offers little that's new; it instead makes a classic like IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT (1934) look mo… (more)