Movie: Ride Along
Rating: 2 1/2 Stars (out of 5)
Review: You will kind of know what is going to happen in this movie before it plays out. Well meaning but bungling twerp Kevin Hart (Ben) is a high school security guard, with dreams of becoming an Atlanta police officer. As “luck” would have it, his girlfriend’s brother James, played by Ice Cube, is a hard nosed decorated police detective, but he also despises dweebish Ben as not good enough for his sister, and certainly not police officer material. How does the macho James figure to discourage Ben? By taking him on the Mother-of-all-Ride-Alongs! Yes, you can imagine the embarrassing gauntlet that the unsuspecting Ben is going to be put through. Think motorcycle gangs, street smart kids, and an out of control person in a supermarket fruit & vegetable section. Ben thinks his video game expertise, where he is known as the Black Hammer, has prepared him for a career in law enforcement. James is there to constantly remind him that games are no substitute for the mean streets. Weaving it’s way through the ride along is the menacing specter of drug kingpin Omar, a person no one has actually seen, who strikes fear throughout the Atlanta underworld. Think maybe Ben and James might bump into Omar at some point?
This is a comedy with some funny moments, and will also satisfy action junkies who crave gun play, car chases, and noisy scenes in general. Kevin Hart takes the little guy side of his character too far, to the point where he is just pathetic at times. Makes us guys in the audience wonder what a hottie like Angela, his girlfriend, sees in this guy. Ice Cube does a credible job as the scowling, tough guy detective who knows how to push the bad guys around. San Antonio native Bruce McGill is always a welcome sight in any movie, and he provides some class to the film as the police supervisor to Ice Cube. Another fine actor, John Leguzamo, is largely wasted in a small role as Ice Cube’s partner. All in all, not a bad way to spend some time in a theater while you munch your popcorn.
Huh? What the…. : At some point in the movie there is a warehouse, and shooting takes place. There are even a few hand grenades that go off. But how the heck does that result in a warehouse explosion that looks like an ICBM missile just hit it?
Actress to Watch: Ben’s girlfriend, Angela, is played by relative newcomer Tika Sumpter. I think us guys hope to see Tika in bigger and better roles in the future.
Dialogue Nugget: James referral to Ben as “One chromosome short of being a dwarf”.
Post Credits Stuff: Nope, not this movie