January 31, 2016

Movie Review: Ride Along 2

Two years ago theaters were graced with the presence of Ride Along, the buddy comedy that paired Kevin Hart with Ice Cube. Despite not being all that good of a movie, it proved to be a hit at the box office, assuring that we would see the pair again. It also seems to have been around this time that somebody, somewhere decided that Kevin Hart was going to be the next big comedy movie star. He was no stranger to the cinema, having been appearing in films for the better part of a decade. Now, while I think he can be funny, his outings of late have just not been funny. Ride Along 2 included.

Ride Along 2 is one of those movies that as soon as it ends, you begin to forget the details. It is not a terribly memorable film, except for maybe the fact that I am pretty sure Hart is talking the entire time he is onscreen, which is the vast majority of the feature. The guy has a motor mouth that wants you to believe he is funny, while never really being much more than a guy that says “Listen to me! I’m funny.” while never actually being funny.

The story picks up some time after the first, Ben (Hart) has graduated police academy and is getting ready for his wedding to Angela (Tika Sumpter). So, while dealing with his overbearing wedding planner, he must also prove himself as a cop to James (Ice Cube). To that end, James takes Ben on a, hehe, ride along to go pick up a witness (Ken Jeong) in Miami. This leads to bigger, more explosive things as they stumble across a crime much bigger than the one they had been investigating.

Take that thread of a story and hang a few explosions, some chases (car and foot variety), a little gun play, and a lot (a LOT) of talking. There you have it. Sadly, I did not find that much to chuckle about here, more often I sat there stone faced, hoping to laugh. I am thinking I just don’t care for Kevin Hart, or he may just need an R rating to be funny (I thought he had some decent moments in Get Hard, although that movie was not all that hot either).

The movie was directed by Tim Story, who also directed the first film (as well as the first two Fantastic Four films). Screenplay duties were handled by the team of Phil Hay and Matt Manfredi, who also worked on the first film as well as RIPD, Clash of the Titans, and Aeon Flux.

I probably should have known better. Since I did not really care for the first, what were the chances I was going to like the second? Probably slim. Still, there I went, off to the theater with the purpose of watching this movie. This isn’t anything particularly special, I do it a lot.

The outcome of my trip is that I saw a movie, I padded my numbers while seeing nothing of any importance. A movie as a commodity, created to make money but offer little if anything else. The best I can hope for is that somebody sees this and sees actual value in it. I am optimistic enough to think that every movie has its true fans and that different people can interpret films differently, see something worth seeing. In my case, my relationship to Ride Along 2 is over. I got nothing out of it and it will soon fade completely from memory.

Not Recommended.

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