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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Saturday, Nov. 29, 2014

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Vince Vaughn's David Wozniak learns he's the father of 533 children in "Delivery Man."
Vince Vaughn's David Wozniak learns he's the father of 533 children in "Delivery Man."

There's a lot of heart at the center of "Delivery Man"

A few months ago – well into 2013 – movie trailers were touting the next great comedy featuring Vince Vaughn, called "Delivery Man."

I groaned.

Sure, I enjoyed Vaughn's fast-talking skill with wit and humor that allows the actor to pull off the ability to be immature and rooted for at the same time. We saw that in "Dodgeball" and "Old School." It was also there, but limited, in "Wedding Crashers" and "Couples Retreat."

To be honest, "Delivery Man" went to the pass list. When I was asked to review the film for the Blu-ray and DVD release today, I gave the story a chance to entertain as I was expecting more of the same form Vaughn.

When Matt Mueller reviewed the theatrical release, he watched it after taking in the original French version "Starbuck" at the Milwaukee Film Festival. He said the American version of the film should have been marked "return to sender." It simply didn’t live up to the first telling of the tale with dark humor and a true heart at its core.

When viewing the film for the first time on Blu-ray, I see where the story was going, wanting to take the viewer on a journey of redemption of a youthful man who has good intentions, but finds his loser self in tough situations.

Vaughn’s character David Wozniak makes a number of donations at a sperm bank and ends up siring 533 children – some of them organized in a lawsuit to find out the real identification of the man only known as "Starbuck."

The money earned from the donation paid to send the family to Venice for the honeymoon his parents never were able to have. Yet the consequences come to haunt, or change him, some 20 years later.

But going in with low expectations, I actually came away liking the film, for the heart of the relationships developed as Vaughn’s Starbuck comes to terms with who he is and who he’d like to be.

Co-star Chris Pratt, who is staring in the upcoming "Guardians of the Galaxy," is the bright spot of the film, offering some great comedic moments as the working father of four children.

The best feature of the Blu-ray is where director and writer Ken Scott and the producers talk about the process of building the family and how that carries this film. It’s that heart that we are able to feel in the connection with Vaughn, and that makes taking it in worth the effort.

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