Monday, January 25, 2016

Ride Along 2 Review

Ride Along 2 Review
In 2014, I saw and wrote a review for "Ride Along," an action, cop, comedy starring Ice Cube and Kevin Hart. "Ride Along" was a film I would have liked just fine, had the movie been a little less ordinary. I felt the best efforts from both Ice Cube and Kevin Hart were wasted and the script was so pedestrian that it pretty much didn't matter. I like Ice Cube and I like Kevin Hart. Ice Cube has starred in some of my favorite movies and he always does good work, whether the movies are good, bad, indifferent. He's one of those actors you can always rely on. I recently watched some Kevin Hart stand-up, and he's just a stitch. He is very capable of humorous material and he can make some very blank moments in something shine bright. So yeah, I like these guys, I want them to do good work.

As I called the first "Ride Along" a comedic "Training Day," "Ride Along 2" is more of a "Hangover Part II." It is a completely unnecessary sequel to a movie that never warranted a sequel to begin with.The movie is a complete water tred of the last movie, except it tries way too hard to fit the "Ride Along" template from last time. Ben (Hart) isn't a student of law in this movie, he's a full fledged cop now, and the way they fit him into the story is just a little ludicrous. As is the way the movie goes out of its way to be just like the original.

The thing here is, the original wasn't that stellar. If this sequel really wanted to be something, it would have tried something different completely. I bet Ice Cube and Kevin Hart would have been game, and believe me when I say that they both try to make this count. Like I said above, Hart makes some stupid moments in this movie highlights, buts not enough. Going through the motions for some quick cash is a waste of Cube and Hart's efforts, and its a waste of audience's time. Once again, a great cast is assembled, featuring Olivia Munn, Ken Jeong, Benjamin Bratt, Glenn Powell, Bruce McGill, T.I. and Tyreese Gibson and they are all equally wasted. Its just too much like the original, Cube and Hart don't get along, there is a case they are hot on and they hurt more than they help, Cube and Hart argue, they get thrown off the case, they go after it anyway, they save the day. You could have called it a mile away.

Had the original been good, I may have liked this movie more. But it wasn't, which is why I scratched my head at the idea of seeing this get a sequel. Director Tim Story doesn't really seem that interested in making things better. Heck, he doesn't seem interested in going the normal sequel root and making things bigger, badder and crazier. "Ride Along 2" feels like a car stuck in neutral. It doesn't go anywhere, and given the cast involved, it could have been better than the first.


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