johnlink ranks LET’S BE COPS (2014)

I liked the comedy of Jake Johnson for the year or so I watched the sitcom New Girl before getting bored with it. I thought he seemed like a guy who could carry a decent comedy. LET’S BE COPS is a throwback comedy in which a couple of guys do something absurdly unrealistic. This premise has led to some great comedies (early Adam Sandler like BILLY MADISON)  and some terrible comedies (most other Adam Sandler movies).


I watched LET’S BE COPS (2014) on 5.7.15. It was my first viewing of the film.

Ryan (Jake Johnson) wants to be an actor. He did a commercial once, anyway. His roommate, Justin (Damon Wayans Jr.), wants to make video games. Both of these guys are living in Los Angeles, years after they said they would move back to Ohio if their careers didn’t pan out. They survive financially, it would seem, on Justin’s merger tech job and Ryan’s payout from a herpes commercial.

One day, they go to a costume party dressed like cops. It turns out to be a low point when said costume party turns out to actually have been a masquerade ball (even though nobody at the party seems to actually be wearing a mask). That mistake seems a nadir for them both, but they soon discover the joys of walking the streets as cops. Ryan runs with the idea and he drags Jason along.

In typical comedy movie fashion, their fake identities prove to be a problem. Justin likes a girl, Josie (Nina Dobrev), but can’t seem to come clean about his real job. Ryan starts messing with some legitimate street thugs who are lead by a crazy guy (James D’Arcy) and a well dressed kingpin (Andy Garcia, clearly cashing a paycheck). All of these things blow up in our heroes’ faces in the third act, of course, leading to a big truth telling and confrontation.

There are some solid comedic faces popping up to help out. Rob Riggle plays a real cop, and plays it much more down-the-middle than might be expected. His gunfight in the climax probably has the only bit of legitimate acting in a movie which isn’t concerned (understandably) with real performances. Also, Keegan-Michael Key turns up as a gang member who helps Jake and Ryan understand what they are up against.

The movie has some really funny bits as well as some moments which draw a laugh despite their silliness. It also, unfortunately, has its share of jokes which fall flat. Further, the script is loaded with those cliche ‘I don’t know what I’m doing with my life’ conversations and a bunch of ‘maybe we shouldn’t be friends, man’ eye-rollers. Those beats do nothing to help the movie, and almost feel like they are there to hit all of the buddy-comedy paint-by-numbers moments that are required in a movie which is more interested in just getting by than it is in actually being funny.

There is a ton of talent in this movie. This same cast could no doubt make a really funny movie. And LET’S BE COPS isn’t terrible. It isn’t unwatchable. It is, instead, absolutely common.




FINAL SCORE: 4.75 out of 10

~ by johnlink00 on May 7, 2015.

One Response to “johnlink ranks LET’S BE COPS (2014)”

  1. Just not funny. Like at all. Nice review John.

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