When it comes to easy Sunday viewings, Let’s Be Cops seems to fit the bill pretty well.
We mean, there’s a pretty great cast (Jake Johnson and Damon Wayans, to name a few) and follows the age-old (comedy gold, might we add) storyline of everyday people suddenly being thrown into a position of great responsibility.
In the past decade, numerous different movies within the comedy genre have thrown quintessentially normal guys into stressful, “figures of authority” situations.
From The Hangover all the way to 21 Jump Street, the list is long and great – and almost always funny. It’s a tried and true comedic storyline – so what could go wrong in the case of Let’s be Cops? Well, as it turns out, a lot.
The thing is, when these types of movies are done well – they’re fantastic. In order for them to be a hit, though, there seems to be a running theme to note, and that theme is potential risk.
Just think about it, in the case of The Hangover, the risk or take away from the movie is to refrain from partying too hard, even if you happen to be in the party capital of the world: Vegas.
When done right, viewers leave the film having experienced a cathartic experience from all the laughs, while also being given a cautionary tale that lends the story a little more substance despite being a comedy.
The problem with Let’s Be Cops is that the story just doesn’t have enough risk or “edginess”.
The director and oc-writer of the movie, Luke Greenfield, has seemingly opted for wackiness over wit, and the result is a movie that has no real sense of danger (and at many points, humor) to give the viewer enough reason to, well, care about the plot.
There’s no real points of danger or risk at any point during Let’s Be Cops, and this is where the movie sadly falls flat.
With no high stakes, there isn’t really enough reason for the viewer to become emotionally invested in the characters (or at the very least, the storyline) and to make matters worse, Let’s Be Cops doesn’t have enough funny moments to help overlook the fact that this movie has no real premise or direction.
Still, the acting is A1 (credit where credit is due) and helps to make these flaws a little more forgivable. That being said, let’s take a closer look at the plot:
Ryan (played by Johnson) is introduced to viewers as an out-of-work actor who’s best acting job was that of a commercial promoting STD medication.
As you might be able to imagine, Ryan isn’t in the best of places at this moment in the movie – both personally and within his career.
We are then soon introduced to Justin (played by Wayans) who, despite being a pretty successful video game developer, is dealing with a difficult boss who constantly takes credit for his work.
In this instance, it just so happens to be a police officer game.
While doing research for this video game, Justin comes into possession of a pair of real police office uniforms, which the two pals decide to wear at a costume party reunion…you can see where this is going.
Much to the dismay of both characters and viewers, the party is actually a masquerade ball – which only serves to deflate Ryan and Justin even more.
After they leave the reunion party feeling pretty sorry for themselves, they begin to notice that their police outfits command both respect and awe from the passersby – particularly that of women.
With this newfound attention, the two decide to pretend to be cops for just a little bit longer!
Well, technically, the two decide to pretend to be cops after Ryan spends time convincing a more skeptical Justin to just go with it.
Ryan, all for this new venture, goes so far as to purchase a used police car on eBay, and even starts to pull people over. At this point, we’re introduced to Jstin’s love interest in the movie, the daughter of a restaurant owner played by Nina Dobrev.
In these earlier scenes, we see both Johson and Wayans really step into their role with total confidence.
Like we’ve already said earlier, both are established actors with plenty of accolades to their name – and it really does seem (at least during the earlier moments) that this movie might serve as a breakout into the movie-sphere for both.
But, for some reason or another, the movie falls flat and is neither edgy, punchy or even funny. A good movie for a lazy Sunday?
Perhaps – but if you’re looking for a film that’s going to leave you holding back laughter while also being on the edge of your seat – Let’s Be Cops isn’t what you’re looking for.
If you liked this article, you might enjoy our post on ‘Gangster Squad Movie Review‘.