by Sam Robinson
Rated M. Starring Vince Vaughn, Chris Pratt, Cobie Smulders. Directed by Ken Scott.
Be warned: Delivery Man is not, repeat not, a film adaptation of Postman Pat.
Delivery Man is a remake of a hit Canadian film Starbuck, directed by Ken Scott, who also is at the helm of this film. It’s the story of David Wozniak (Vaughn), who spends most of his day driving a truck around town delivering meat, but also for some reason owes a bunch of thugs $80,000 – this is never really fleshed out properly.
After work one day David bumps into a lawyer who hits him with the news that he had fathered 533 children from sperm donations that he made to fund his years in college. David assumed those days were behind him, but now 142 of the children have banded together to make a lawsuit to force the sperm bank to reveal the identity of their father, who they only know by the codename ‘Starbuck’.
It’s all very silly and farfetched however I was relieved that the film really wasn’t all that crude, which you might expect from a film of this nature. It’s more drama than comedy, and there is a romantic quality to the events as they unfold. Vince Vaughn isn’t great in the lead role, but Chris Pratt (who plays David’s friend and lawyer, Brett) steals the show. I’m a huge fan of Pratt in Parks and Recreation, and his comedic timing is always excellent. The screenplay isn’t as excellent (loose ends galore) and director Scott chooses to make the film one big heart-warming group hug instead of stringing out realistic tension.
‘It is impossible to be the father of 533 children. But I can be their guardian angel.’
The focus of Delivery Man is David’s struggle to be the father that he should be, and should have been for the last twenty-odd years, which is made all the more difficult considering the crazy number of kids he has. He takes it upon himself to track down each child one-by-one to see where they’re at in life, all without revealing himself as their father. As he says in the quote above, he wants to be their guardian angel. For example, there’s one scene where he poses as a pizza delivery guy and meets his daughter in the middle of a drug overdose, saving her life. But while David has good intentions, there’s no way he’s ever going to be the father every one of his 533 children needs.
This got me thinking about the relationship we have with our heavenly Father. When we give our lives to Jesus, we are reconciled and we can be certain of a relationship with our Heavenly Father who knows us, loves us and cares for us personally. Our Heavenly Father is no guardian angel who haunts us in the shadows to check if we’re OK – he loves us to the point that he wants to know us, and wants us to know him. Ephesians 1:3-4 helps with this –
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight…
Our Heavenly Father isn’t someone who didn’t know we existed for ten, fifteen, twenty years. He chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight, washed clean by the blood of Jesus. He is the ultimate Father. And he is always with us, knowing us, forgiving us, meeting our needs.
Delivery Man is an offbeat, enjoyable watch with a unique take on fatherhood. I’m giving it three out of five stars.
Delivery Man is available on Blu-Ray, DVD and streaming on Quickflix.