Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Cop Out - DVD Review


Starring Bruce Willis, Tracy Morgan, Seann William Scott, Kevin Pollak, Adam Brody, Ana de la Regeura, Guillermo Diaz, Rashida Jones, Michelle Trachtenberg, Susie Essman and Jason Lee.
Directed by Kevin Smith.

This is the first movie Kevin Smith's directed that he didn't write, and yet, a lot of it seems like he might have written it. I think it's due to a lot of improvising by the cast, giving it a Smith-ian spirit, seeing as how the screenplay was so thin to begin with.

It's a homage to 1980's cop movies, and if the soundtrack and parade of cliches doesn't tip you off, then Tracy Morgan quoting every movie under the sun in the opening scene will. Here's the thing. It's not like all the old-school cop movies were good. The Last Boy Scout, for instance, was terrible. Should it be resurrected?

Willis and Morgan are Jimmy and Paul, partners for nine years. I didn't believe it for a second. They had no chemistry with each other, and Paul is a man-child way too similar to Morgan's deranged 30 Rock character. Jimmy is trying to figure out how to pay for his daughter's wedding; Paul is worried his wife's cheating on him. Naturally they get suspended early in the film, but they press on to bust a drug case.

The film does pick up once Seann William Scott shows up as a burglar-stoner, the Joe Pesci in the Lethal Weapon trio. I even laughed a couple times. Unfortunately he's not in it as much as the previews suggested.

I haven't liked everything Smith has done, but I was relieved to learn he didn't actually write this. I hope this doesn't discourage him from directing others' work - that's what most directors do - but hopefully next time he'll be more discerning.

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