Bruce (Frost) is an engineer who designs and sells lathes, the oxford dictionary definition of which; is a machine for shaping wood, metal, or other material by means of a rotating drive which turns the piece being worked on against changeable cutting tools. If you haven’t fallen asleep please keep reading. Bruce is wallowing in mediocrity and the intense bullying of his colleague Drew (O’Dowd) doesn’t help, so when Julie (Jones) arrives to take control of the company Bruce decides it’s time to get his mojo back and that means two things. Salsa and corazón.
On the face of it, based on the trailers, you could be forgiven for thinking this is going to be absolute rubbish, but if you look a little closer you will see a decent cast boasting serious comedy chops. The characters are nothing new in a romantic comedy setting but the casting is absolutely spot on and it’s good to see Chris O’Dowd play such a dislikeable asshole because he has got it down to a tee. Rashida Jones much like her love interest Nick Frost is eminently likeable and she has got great timing as well. Her scenes with Frost are very funny and you can really feel how awkward it is for them as they tiptoe around each other. Ian McShane is effective as the grumpy old salsa instructor and a special mention has to go to Kayvan Novak who brings a lot of laughs to the table as a salsa dancer who helps Bruce to get his grove back.
Nick Frost, who is more commonly associated with being Simon Pegg’s sidekick, is a much more talented guy than he gets credit for. His comic timing is unquestionable and in being the underdog here you will be rooting for him from the moment he arrives on screen. Frost deserves his time in the spotlight so let’s have more of the Nick Frost stand-alone projects please.
Cuban Fury is not setting the world on fire with originality but it does a hell of a lot with what it’s got. The writing is good with the characters delivering exactly what’s expected and maybe even a little bit more. Definitely worth a trip to the cinema, especially if the leaden material of Oscar season is starting to get you down