View Full Version : Let's Be Cops (Luke Greenfield)

Henry Gale
08-01-2014, 02:13 AM
http://m.cdn.blog.hu/pr/premierfilmek/image//10175023_837878402906224_35696 21020003011153_n.jpg

IMDb (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1924435/)

Dead & Messed Up
08-01-2014, 02:20 AM
Let's not and forget they brought it up.

Henry Gale
08-01-2014, 03:41 AM
I mean, my feelings going in were, "Ok, I really like Wayans and Johnson from their TV gigs (both together and apart) and whenever they show up in other movies, and the supporting cast looks fine too." with otherwise pretty ambivalent thoughts on premise and most of the trailers. Aaaaand that's basically what I got out of it by the time it ended.

The script is really weird, with the tendency to feel really R-rated vulgar and almost network sitcom-safe within the same scenes, and tonally the plot goes from cartoonishly silly early on to sometimes shockingly dark (and then back to the former again in unintentional ways when it needs to resolve itself and allow the characters a happy ending) like so many '80s and '90s comedies like this used to do, that ultimately I'm stunned this is a script the director wrote himself and not something that had been dusted off from those eras that had sat around waiting to fit the right inexpensive duo of actors that happened to come along to headline it as this sort of late Summer studio comedy.

After not being good at all for a good 45 minutes or so, the movie gets a weird second-wind where people like Rob Riggle, Natasha Leggero and Keegan-Michael Key all show up in quick succession to provide the sort of laughs that seem to stem more from their own great sensibilities and improv skills that don't feel as shackled to conforming to what the rest of the movie needs to be like Wayans and Johnson's performances tend to. But even then in that third quarter of the movie the leads get a few scenes to be looser and significantly funnier (particularly in with Key and an undercover mission sequence), almost as if that trio of UCB supporting players rubbed off on everything happening in the movie for the better. But it isn't meant to last. The final act does that thing I thought modern comedies were done with where things get way too self-serious and unconsciously counterproductive with trying to drive real stakes at the sacrifice of funniness.

There's a major difference in the way things like Pineapple Express, Observe and Report, This Is The End (and I suppose other really good stuff that don't necessarily involve David Gordon Green, Jody Hill and Seth Rogen), Hot Fuzz and 21 Jump Street that manage to bring in majorly violent visuals and serious thematic turns and still tonally remain enjoyable, tangible and most importantly funny enough to not feel like they clash with the rest of what they have to offer. And maybe that's a very recent turnaround in mainstream comedies that I now take for granted because of movies like those that manage those elements so well, but Let's Be Cops feels like such a stark contrast to that, and like a relic of a bygone era where simply saying the word "herpes" is expected to elicit a laugh in the very first scene, and then trying to mine real dramatic weight in the potential consequences of the central conceit of the story (including the impending deaths of them and everyone they know) probably feels more natural just typing them side by side here than the way the movie treats it all.

The director/co-writer also did The Girl Next Door with Emile Hirsch and Elisha Cuthbert way back when I was seemingly at a perfect time in my early teen years when that sort of now obviously blandly "edgy" premise and general filmmaking style found a way to work then and only then perfectly for me. (It also helped that I had the biggest, long-standing crush on Cuthbert then... and I guess since then too...) And maybe Let's Be Cops will fill a similar R-rated comedy void for kids now, as it has its own false sense of being rude or cutting edge with its jokes in small ways with a lot of confidence and directorial gloss on its side (from music choices to how it's shot and staged), but I also feel like similarly young people are exposed to so much nowadays (both comedically and otherwise) not only through the internet but even TV and film now that it might not have the same effect it could've back when things like Girl Next Door (or Scary Movie, The New Guy, Road Trip, other things that didn't come to mind) worked.

It's the sort of movie that used to make sense as a "It's fine if it comes on TV sometime" sort of recommendation, or that people couldn't go wrong with as a cheap rental at the video store, but those days are gone and this still finds a way to exist as if it's from the same cultural and creative climate. I guess the current equivalent would be "Wait for it to come on Netflix" for the dozen genuine, memorable laughs it has and the fairly breezy, empty-calorie comedy movie it is. But c'mon, there's so much great stuff on Netflix now. If you've watched everything else you ever wanted on there (especially the three seasons of Happy Endings and New Girl where these leads are at their best), then meh, sure, watch this. It's a mildly noteworthy comedy that somehow never got made in or before 2002!

* / 3.8

08-15-2014, 03:38 AM
It does forget that it's supposed to be a comedy for a bit at the end, but when it IS being a comedy, I liked it for the most part. Not all of the jokes worked, but enough did to where I was able to enjoy this overall.

08-15-2014, 05:19 AM
This is almost as ill-timed as when they released O., an adaptation of Othello, the same week as 9/11.

08-15-2014, 12:31 PM
This is almost as ill-timed as when they released O., an adaptation of Othello, the same week as 9/11.


Pop Trash
08-15-2014, 07:25 PM
This is almost as ill-timed as when they released O., an adaptation of Othello, the same week as 9/11.

Or this chestnut from 2001:


08-15-2014, 07:28 PM
Amazing album, though.

Ezee E
08-17-2014, 10:48 PM
I wonder if this was suppose to be a sketch comedy that worked well enough that it simply turned into a full movie. It's at its best in bits that don't particularly involve the plot of the movie. Little moments made me laugh the most, such as wondering if the guns were real, and the guffawing each time they enter through doors. However, as mentioned above, the movie does get too self-serious and there's never really any consequences for anything in the movie. Take a look at Observe and Report (also mentioned) that does this very well.

Henry Gale
08-18-2014, 02:53 AM
Yeah, the smallest bit that me and one of my best and oldest friends lost it at was when they were going through that bad guys' lair of stolen police gear you mentioned and Johnson sees a rack of SWAT vests and helmets and goes, "OH, do you know what these are?" to which Wayans (high on meth) replies, "Mmmm, cloooothes." with such sly confidence.

But then it seemed like the rest of audience didn't even bat an eye at it, and that seemed like it kept happening, confusing us both. Those off-the-cuff lines and actions (from the leads but more consistently when people like Riggle, Key and Leggero came along to support them) were either not picked up by the crowd (often as they were coming down from laughing at staler stuff) or maybe just as easily didn't find them funny, which would also make sense since we seemed to be on different comedic wavelengths anyway. For instance, the criminals being forced to twerk got some uproarious guffaws while I just sort of took a deep breath and waited for it to move on.

I guess in general it makes sense for me that the moments that seemed entirely dependent on the actors' specificity and timing in their performances and improv instincts were the best moments in something that had such a weak script.

Pop Trash
08-18-2014, 05:56 AM
That's the story of my life at comedies. The worst was when I saw Ghost World in a theater with a stonefaced crowd while I was rolling. I think a theater-goer even turned around and glared at me at one point.

08-25-2014, 01:00 AM
I enjoyed this quite a bit. I was able to just laugh and enjoy the jokes. The directing needed work and could have helped the jokes be better but I still enjoyed it quite a bit.

08-30-2014, 05:02 AM
This was bad. James D'arcy was good in a completely wasted villain performance, though.

Henry Gale
08-30-2014, 05:11 AM
This was bad. James D'arcy was good in a completely wasted villain performance, though.

I had nooooo idea it was him until after I saw it. All I thought was, "Oh, this guy's bringing something really different to this, for better or worse." and thought he was more magnetic than he had any right to be considering what the script gave him, but then he kind of just fades away from things once Garcia comes into it.

But for such a thankless role, he absolutely disappeared into it.

Pop Trash
09-01-2014, 09:02 PM
This is now on track to make at least $80 M on a $17 M budget. So much for the wrong release date.

09-24-2015, 01:23 PM
Might be the most underrated comedy ever.

Fucking love the subtle jabs at the video game industry making everything zombie and post apocalyptic.

09-24-2015, 02:06 PM
... That was supposed to be subtle?

09-24-2015, 02:29 PM
Bwhaha well I guess at the very beginning it was but then it grew into something bigger.