Stuber is a perfect example of why chemistry matters so much. If Dave Bautista and Kumail Nanjiani walked into a room, you would think they came from two very different worlds. If you put the two together on screen, the results are nothing short of remarkable. In this age of reboots and sequels, Hollywood should be clamoring to put these two in a reboot of ‘The Odd Couple.’ Who couldn’t picture Kumail as Felix and Dave as Oscar?
However, the reason why Stuber works is the commitment each lead has to their respective roles. Bautista’s character Vic Manning is the straight man but certainly has quite the flair for physical comedy. Nanjiani’s character Stuart (who you would think was more of the straight guy) shows us a flair for “losing it.” The results are an unexpected romp for audience members abroad (a true 5-star comedic experience).
Most of the reason why Stuber works is due to how writer Tipper Clancy addresses toxic masculinity in the storyline. Vic (Bautista) is a cop (who lost his partner after she’s shot in pursuit of a drug lord) who is quite rough and exhibits no ability to share his feelings with others. Stuart (Nanjiani) is a meek man who works at sporting goods store and drives for Uber to make extra cash to help support a business venture he’s persuaded to be part of. Manning gets a break in the case of his partner’s death, but he can’t drive due to just having eye surgery.
Stuber doesn’t feel like it’s lagging at any point and although the film does reach a predictable outcome, that doesn’t detract from the level of enjoyment you’ll get from taking a chance on this unlikely pair. If I were to pick a perfect a date night movie this week, Stuber would vault to the top of the list.