In the modern tradition of action comedies Ride Along is as funny as a wet afternoon in July with a plot that disintegrates on impact.
There are times in an actor’s career when a name correction adds gravitas.
The Rock became Dwayne Johnson, for example. Larry Fishburne became Lawrence Fishburne.
What about Ice Cube? He’s still square and cold. How can you take the dude seriously?
He plays James, a police detective in Atlanta who is obsessed with bringing down a drugs lord (L. Fishburne).That’s not the story. Well, it is – sort of.
The real deal concerns Ben (Kevin Hart), James’ future brother-in-law, who wants to prove that he has the wherewithal (in-yo-face aggression, street smarts and training) to do cop stuff.
He is allowed – God knows how – to partner James on the beat.
Ben is a motor mouth.
You understand one word in 10, which means you miss the jokes, if there are any.
He is also a little guy – cue sizeist gags – whose training has been video games.
He does everything wrong which turns out right. You know that’s going to happen from the start.
There’s no subtlety here. Follow the dots.
When Jackie Chan made Shanghai Noon with Owen Wilson the chemistry worked. When he made Rush Hour with Chris Tucker it worked even better.
Ice Cube is not Chinese. He’s a rapper, or was.
And the science can’t change that.
Hart goes at it like a terrier with a rat. He has the energy to illuminate a small village, but there’s no connection with anyone else. Jim Carrey can get away with this. Hart can’t.
He’s only funny by mistake.