Tim Lippe (Ed Helms) is a by-the-book insurance salesman. He has obviously led a very sheltered, conservative life. He always does as he’s told. He gives his girlfriend, Macy (Sigourney Weaver) a promise ring. But he just can’t seem to get ahead. He’s number two at his agency. Until the number one meets an unfortunate demise.
It’s up to Tim to go to the convention in Cedar Rapids to win the coveted Two Diamond award for his agency. His boss’ (Stephen Root) only rule is to avoid the troublemaking Dean Ziegler (John C. Reilly).
As luck would have it, he is forced to share a room with Ziegler. Tim reluctantly hangs out with Ziegler and his third roommate Ronald (Isiah Whitlock Jr.). Along their adventures, he meets and becomes smitten with another agent, Joan (Anne Heche). She’s a married woman who has a rule that “What happens in Cedar Rapids, stays in Cedar Rapids.” After a drunken night out with the boys and Joan, he ends up in bed with her.
The next morning, his whole world starts to fall apart. He confesses to Macy. She breaks up with him. Orin Hegelsson (Kurtwood Smith) has witnessed his shenanigans, thus causing him to potentially forfeit his sole goal of going to the conference. His boss finds out, threatening to fire him. And he learns that the insurance industry isn’t as pious as he thought.
To be honest, I didn’t give this movie much credit before I watched it. Given the cast, I knew it had the potential for greatness. But I feared it would be one of those not-so-funny comedies. I mean, how many of you have even heard of this movie? Right.
Now that I’ve seen it, I feel I should apologize. The movie was irreverent and hilarious. I found myself laughing through a great deal of it. Sure, it had its slower moments. But what movie doesn’t.
The story isn’t like most comedies I’ve seen. Even those where the straight and narrow protagonist experiences the dark side of the world. Some of the things Ed Helms and John C. Reilly say and do, well, it’s Ed Helms and John C. Reilly. If you enjoy their movies, you know what I’m talking about.
It’s definitely not for everyone, but if you’re looking for something out of the ordinary funny, you’ll get a good laugh out of Cedar Rapids.