Tag Archives: Ice Cube

Ride Along 2 *

IMDB Synopsis: As his wedding day approaches, Ben heads to Miami with his soon-to-be brother-in-law James to bring down a drug dealer who’s supplying the dealers of Atlanta with product.

I thought the original “Ride Along” was an ok film. It was good for a few laughs. The sequel on the other hand replaces those laughs long, painfully unfunny scenes of banter. Nothing works here.

I am not sure if the writers even put together a script. There is an outline for an action comedy. All the cliches of a buddy cop flick are used. There is not a single original moment in the entire running time.

The dialogue seems like it could of all been ad-libbed. Ice Cube is simply on screen to insult Kevin Hart’s character. Hart is allowed to run his mouth for way too long. None of it was authentic sounding or funny. Olivia Munn is brought in to play a particularly bland cop. I’m not sure what Hollywood’s fascination is with Munn as she hasn’t given a decent performance yet.

Sequels like this exist to make money. Plain and simply. The first film was a break out hit which meant a sequel was inevitable. Too bad everyone simply phoned it in.

Straight Outta Compton ***

  

IMDB Synopsis: NWA emerges from the mean streets of Compton in Los Angeles, California, in the mid-1980s and revolutionizes Hip Hop culture with their music and tales about life in the hood.

“Straight Outta Compton” is a biopic about the hip hop group NWA. Anybody who lived through the 80’s and 90’s should watch this film because the filmmakers have painstakingly recreated both those decades in all their glory. The technical aspects of this film are amazing. And not just the locations and the time frame but the music and the performances were awesome as well.

NWA were a force back when they were together. This film couldn’t be more timely as more and more African American’s are being harassed and murdered by the police almost every day. This film serves as a reminder that things really have not changed all that much. Only difference is that everybody has a video camera in their pocket these days.

My only problem with this film is that it goes on way too long. I didn’t really see a reason to go so deep in to the Death Row era of rap history. That stuff is ripe for a separate feature length film. It felt like the film was just becoming a whole lot of cameos. Still the first two hours of this film are insanely good.

Ride Along **1/2

20140702-133257-48777726.jpg

“Ride Along” was not really on my radar but it became a massive box office success. Kevin Hart’s popularity seems to be sky rocketing at the moment. I have enjoy his stand up comedy but I haven’t seen a movie yet that has utilized his talents properly quite yet. “Ride Along” has some funny moments and is a fairly entertaining movie but I’m still waiting for Hart to find a role that he can sink his teeth in to. Think of Eddie Murphy in “48 Hours”. I hate to compare the two but I want Hart to find a role that truly elevates his comedy in to a memorable performance.

Pairing him with Ice Cube is a good start. Cube has seemed to settle in to a series of roles that make him in to a hard ass authority figure. His character here is similar to his role in “21 Jump Street”. He is a tough cop who doesn’t put up with any crap and has a serious problem with the seemingly pathetic Hart dating his sister. He figures that taking Hart on a ride along will scare him away. The results are fairly entertaining.

I truly hope that Kevin Hart doesn’t go the way of Kevin James, Vince Vaughn or even Adam Sandler as of late. They had a few hits and tried to keep doing the same things over and over until they have basically worn out their welcome. I want Hart to work with some real directors who can fine tune his performances in to something greater.

Next Friday **

20130110-124253.jpg

“Next Friday” was the first sequel to the cult hit “Friday”. Unfortunately it lacked the charm of the original and I think that is because they just could not get Chris Tucker back as Smokey. Omar Epps is a funny actor but those are big shoes to fill for anyone. Tucker shot to superstardom after “Friday” so chances are they just could not afford his high price tag.

Cube does what he can with the film but the loss of Smokey is felt from start to finish. There is a third sequel in the works and word is that the character of Smokey has been written in but there is no confirmation as to whether or not Chris Tucker will reprise the role.