Starring: Will Ferrell, Kevin Hart, Craig T. Nelson, Alison Brie, T.I.
Directed By: Etan Cohen
Making his directorial debut, Etan Cohen doesn’t change the game with Get Hard. This is definitely a second-tier Will Ferrell movie, alongside Blades of Glory and Semi-Pro. It’s not awful, like Bewitched, but it’s certainly nothing to run down the streets screaming about. I’m pretty certain it will not be a quotable title either.
Ferrell and Hart are definitely 100% committed to their roles and the film, but the film itself just can’t live up to its own hype. It’s like the film is “oh, wouldn’t it be funny if…” and then we find out that it wouldn’t be funny. Situational comedy can be funny, but Get Hard misses the point. Sure, there were a few laughs. I enjoyed watching Kevin Hart describe the plot of Boyz In The Hood as if it was his own life story. I enjoyed watching Will Ferrell’s undying commitment to potentially needing to suck a dick. But really, the only thing enjoyable about the film is its stars, and you kind of end up feeling sorry for them. They should have had better writers, but they didn’t.
Instead, Ferrell and Hart have to make unfunny seem funny. That’s a daunting task. Too many times, the set up isn’t fully realized. The white supremacist scene could have been so much funnier, but it fell flat. I’m not going to say I didn’t laugh, but I didn’t laugh with near the frequency expected of a Will Ferrell/Kevin Hart joint. Both actors are high energy, and high commitment, and if your writing isn’t there for them… there’s nothing they can do. There were several moments that could have been funny, and weren’t, because the joke had no payoff. Watching Will Ferrell describe why he believed Kevin Hart had been in jail SHOULD have been funny. The writing wasn’t.
I’m sure we’ll have funnier comedies this year. I’m a fan of Ferrell and Hart, and they really do save this movie from complete mediocrity, but there’s really only just so much they can do.
FINAL GRADE: C+