Cert: 12A / 100 mins / Dir. Tim Story
There's a point, a few minutes into Ride Along, when hip, streetwise police officer, Ian Cube*1 calls on a hotel valet attendant get him a car to pursue an escaping gunman. The vehicle arrives speedily, within about a second, and Cube does a comedy-double-take and exclaims "What, a Prius? Oh hell no, get that outta here!" What follows is a brief, wider shot with no dialogue; a lull which director Tim Story imagined would be filled with the raucous laughter of the packed auditorium; a lull which was more accurately filled tonight by the (admittedly small) audience thinking "…oh. Oh, that was a joke then?". Get used to that awkward cinematic silence my friend, for it will be your sporadic, yet wearily familiar, companion through the following ninety-five minutes of four screenwriters vying for your attention. While Ian Cube arches an eyebrow and says "bullshit".
Now… That sounds harsh, I know. Ride Along is by no means awful, but it's patchy as hell and relies too heavily on the chemistry between Cube and Hart to hold things together. The central pair have some great scenes together, just not all the time. Cube frequently looks like he can't believe the script he's delivering, and Hart frequently looks like he can't believe he's getting away with playing his role as Chris Rock. The supporting cast autopilot their way through what appears to be a promising first-draft of a screenplay, with the honourable exception of Laurence Fishburne who seems to be having a whale of a time (even if his part is as hackneyed as the rest of the movie). And then Cube says "bullshit".
There's shrieking, grunting, the obligatory underwritten girlfriend character, bikers, Eastern European gangsters, the obligatory stuffy police-chief character, black kids on an urban basketball court, gunfire, and a car bursting through the flames of an explosion before the title-card lands. And then Cube says "bullshit" (I think that's a thing). Ride Along did make me laugh in places, but considering how little there is that's 'new' about the film, you'd expect everyone to at least try a bit harder.
For best results, file next to The Other Guys, Cop Out and The Heat.
Make of that what you will.
Pretty much. That bit with the shotgun? Best joke.
Not as much as Tim Story intended me to.
It's a rental with a few beers.
I wouldn't not watch it again, but I'd need a beer in my hand.
There is. Within the first five minutes.
Why is it a thing with Cube saying "bullshit" as if he invented the word? Did I miss a memo, or something?
*1 Call him by his name. Ian Christopher Cube.
• ^^^ That's dry, British humour, and most likely sarcasm or facetiousness.
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