Rating: 2 1/2 Stars (Out of 5)
Review: Rell (Jordan Peele) is disconsolate. He has been dumped by his girlfriend, and has shunned the world, preferring to smoke dope and vegetate. Which is easy, because his neighbor is Hulka (Will Forte), the dope dealer. But his best friend Clarence (Keegan-Michael Key) is determined to bring Rell out of his shell by taking him out to the movies. As it turns out, the only thing that gets Rell out of his funk is a kitten that shows up on his door step and makes himself at home, and is immediately christened Keanu.
How could such a cute little kitten be the cause of chaos? Kind of like that theory of a butterfly in Malaysia having an effect on a different continent. In this case, Keanu was owned by a drug lord, except he got pumped full of lead by two scary maniacs known as the Allentown Boys, who took a liking to the little critter. But all the gunplay scared the kitty, who took off for safer digs, and ended up with Rell. Only problem is, the wheels of chaos are inexorably turning, with bad people about to make life interesting and more than a little scary as Rell and Clarence seek to rescue Keanu from very bad people. Somehow, along the way, people in the hood think the two guys from the ‘burbs are stone cold killers.
Some critics seem to have liked this movie quite a bit. I really wanted to like this film; I like Peele and Key, I like comedies, and I like cats. But it just seemed like Peele and Key had to work overtime chewing the scenery trying to get laughs out of this story. The main problem is the absurd plot which is held together by chewing gum and paper clips. Two very average black guys doing their best to come off as bad asses in parts of LA where everyone is a bad ass just didn’t work for me. Frankly, there just were not many laughs in this movie, and too many places where we had to suspend belief to allow the story line to stagger forward.
Dialogue Nuggets: “These are the guys who kick the ass of the Bloods and the Crips: the Blips.”
Rell to Clarence – “You sound like Richard Pryor doing an impression of a white guy.”
Rell – “We’re in the market for a gangsta pet.”
Cheddar (Method Man) to Clarence & Rell – “I heard how it went down at King Diaz’s church. That was some cold shit.”
Clarence The Tough Guy – “You’re going to give us some G*d damned cat, and we’re going to be on our G*d damned way!”
“I’m Bud. I got into gangbanging after being stabbed by my Mom.”
Huh? What the ….: Don’t know how this kitten managed to make his way all over Los Angeles on his own without getting run over. Used up some of those 9 lives, I guess.
Just One Last Thing: We never do find out what that “somewhat inappropriate thing” was that happened to Clarence’s wife Hannah (the lovely Nia Long).
Movie Site Oopsie: If you bother to check Keanu at the http://www.movieinsider.com site, for some reason they think Gabrielle Union was in this movie….