Queenpins review: comedy based on a true story

Kristen Bell and Kirby Howell-Baptiste in Queenpins

Queenpins is a lighthearted comedic telling of a story based on fact. Two women made millions of dollars selling coupons that they obtained free (okay, they stole them). A similar thing really happened, but I doubt if the real life version of the story was anywhere near as funny as this film.

Queenpins stars Kristen Bell as Connie, the woman who thought of the idea. Connie got started clipping coupons to save money, just like everyone else. Then she found if she wrote letters of complaint to companies, they would send her coupons for free items. She realized she could sell the free coupons for half their value and the enterprise was born.

Kristen Bell and Kirby Howell-Baptiste in Queenpins

Her next door neighbor JoJo (Kirby Howell-Baptiste, who now goes by just Kirby) got in on the action. Connie and JoJo found out there was a factory in Mexico printing all those coupons. Why not liberate some of the extras and start selling them on a website? They found willing helpers in Mexico who would send them ‘extra’ coupons for a cut.

A few years back JoJo had her identity stolen by a hacker, Tempe Tina (Bebe Rexha). They found her and she took them blindfolded to a secret location. She explained how to run a money laundering business to them. They got some of the details wrong, but they were off making millions.

Vince Vaughn and Paul Walter Hauser in Queenpins

Ken (Paul Walter Hauser) was employed to spot fake coupons. Yes, such a job really exists. When he realized something funny costing the big corporations lots of money was happening, he took the case to the FBI. Nobody was interesting in doing much until they realized the coupons were being sent in the U.S. mail. That’s when Simon (Vince Vaughn) showed up. He was a postal inspector.

Connie and JoJo were great together. Ken and the deadpan, serious Simon were a whole other kind of hilarious.

Queenpins, written and directed by Aron Gaudet and Gita Pullapilly, was lighthearted and fun. I was rooting for the criminals. Who doesn’t want to get half price diapers and free boxes of cereal from the big corporations? No one.

Netflix has the film. If you give it a look, let me know what you thought of it.

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