There's a simple reason improv factors so heavily in many big-screen comedies: After only a few takes, the existing material can start to feel stale for everyone involved. Imagine, then, the lifelessness that plagues Delivery Man
, which is writer-director Ken Scott's scene-for-scene, line-for-line remake of his 2011 French-Canadian film, Starbuck
. Transferred to New York and translated into English, this remains the story of David Wozniak (Vince Vaughn), a meat delivery driver who seems to be bad luck incarnate. A sperm bank severely mismanaged his deposits in the ’90s, resulting in him siring over 500 children. Upon discovering this, he does what any decent guy would do: stalk his unknown offspring and play fairy godfather (in one laughable case, ending a daughter's heroin addiction with a wave of his buffoonery). Almost immediately, it's apparent that Delivery Man
will offer a low return on its high-concept premise. Apparently uncomfortable watching his leading man squirm—because when has that ever been amusing?—Scott forgoes a redemption story in favor of one hinging on unearned absolution. This path of least resistance seems tailor-made for a typically disengaged Vaughn. All told, a new release has rarely felt so stillborn.