Title: Jack and Ralph: Plan a Murder

Also known as:

Year: 2014

Genre: Independent / Comedy / Crime

Language: English

Runtime: 65 min

Director: Jeff Doyle

Writer: Jeff Doyle

IMDb: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2647970/

At work Jack is a bullied loser and at home he's a loner. Except for his imaginary friend, Ralph. Ralph manages to push Jack into planning the murder of his bully, but things are bound to go wrong.

Our thoughts:
With its title it has essentially made clear what this movie is - we know it's comedy, we know it has crime elements, and by that alone we can safely get into the movie with the perfect mindset. I'm happy to say that it worked, because the movie delivers what is promised and it's just as fun, but with that thriller touch to it. A short runtime, which actually works in its favor, makes the movie quick and to the point.

In the opening shot we establish Jack and his imaginary friend Ralph. Ralph is essentially his drill sergeant in life, pushing him to not be a loser, not be a pussy, and to stand up and fight. Which is exactly what he does when he continues to be bullied at work. Ralph convinces him that the bully, Pat, must die for this to end. It takes a bit of convincing before he goes along with it. The planning begins...

Mixed in with this crime comedy is a girl (of course). A much needed girl, as she's the one to fall for Jack and stand by his side at work. Ralph is good and all, but you know... he doesn't exist. So it's vital that Jack has the girl, Laura. The problem is that Laura also interacts with Pat, though she doesn't seem to enjoy what Pat has to say or what he does to Jack. In a movie like this, the love interest is much more than just the cherry on top, I think here it is the most important thing in Jack's life to get him through the ordeal and to get Ralph to leave him alone. We like Ralph, but we don't want Jack to be dependent on him, which he clearly is.

I mentioned the runtime earlier, and that's one thing I have to address. It's very short for this kind of a movie. Usually they go on for quite some time to get us to care about the character, show how mistreated he is, and eventually go into details about the murder. I'd say expect a 90 minutes movie for the concept to be done thoroughly. Yet Jeff Doyle manages to do everything according to plan in just 65 minutes, and it doesn't need anything else.

Sure, it's part of a genre that has been done somewhat similarly many times over the decades, and I can't even say I am a huge fan of the comedy crime flicks by people like the Coen Brothers. But I think they are fun, I take them as pure entertainment, and with that said I enjoyed "Jack and Ralph: Plan a Murder" a lot. It's just entertaining and with some heavier themes included (mainly loneliness, standing up to someone, etc.). It has all the important elements. At times the movie take strange turns which works great with the use of an imaginary character, as it throws us off a bit and does it mainly for a laugh. I appreciated that, which I don't always do. The entire team has done a fine job with everything from script down to the heart of the characters.

Positive things:
- Jeff Doyle himself and Johnny Elliott are a good acting duo.
- Fun and keeps it tight with the runtime.
- Has some more serious moments, which is greatly needed.

Negative things:
- The ending isn't a problem for the movie itself, but as a personal preference I wasn't too happy with certain details.

Gore: 0.5/5
Nudity: 0/5
Story: 3/5
Effects: 2.5/5
Comedy: 3.5/5

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