“Get Hard” – Warner Bros.(NEW YORK) — Kevin Hart and Will Ferrell are two of the funniest people on the planet. So how did they end up making such an unfunny movie?
Ferrell plays James, a wealthy banker who lives in a wealthy Los Angeles neighborhood and is engaged to a gorgeous, spoiled woman (Community‘s Alison Brie) who’s also his boss’s daughter.
Next thing we know, James is arrested for fraud and sentenced to ten years in prison — hard time, at San Quentin. That’s when he turns to Kevin Hart’s Darnell, the owner of the car wash in the building where James works, offering to pay Darnell to teach him how to survive in prison. Darnell needs $30,000 to buy a house, move his family to a better neighborhood and send his daughter to a school without metal detectors, so he accepts James’ offer.
It’s a major plot point, and one of several that some are calling offensive: James assumes that because Darnell’s black, he must have been to prison. The humor isn’t meant to be racist, but rather intended to highlight the fact James is such an idiot, he actually believes it. It doesn’t matter — either way, it’s not funny.
But the problem here isn’t offensive humor. The problem is a premise that isn’t strong enough to carry a feature-length film. Get Hard might have been a hilarious 10-minute short. Instead, the jokes become forced, repetitive and, in some cases, just plain stupid.
Speaking of which: Ferrell unquestionably deserves the many accolades he’s received for what’s been a terrific career, but it’s becoming clear he’s gotten a little too comfortable with the formula his films follow. First, he plays an idiot who says ridiculous things with a straight face. Then there’s the predictable slapstick, in which his character sustains a grotesque or unimaginably painful injury, the best being the tranquilizer dart in 2003’s Old School. Here, it’s a shiv to the forehead — amusing, but again, we’ve seen it before. Yawn.
Sure, you’ll get a few laughs because you can’t stop Hart and Ferrell from being funny, no matter how bad the script is. But Get Hard is an example of two very funny people coming together to make a movie that in the end is only mildly amusing, at best.
Two out of five stars.
Read More →
Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.