Friday, July 8, 2016

Film Review: Get Hard (2015)

Get Hard (Review)
United States/2015
Format Viewed For Review: HBO Now
Netflix Streaming: No
Amazon Prime: No

"It occasionally gets stale and repetitive, especially towards the generic ending, but I left entertained."

James King (Will Ferrell), a wealthy hedge fund manager, recruits his car washer, Darnell (Kevin Hart), to help him transition from his rich life to prison life when he's convicted of fraud and embezzlement.

There isn't much to say about Get Hard in terms of plot. It's a buddy comedy that follows James and Darnell. James is an extremely wealthy and ignorant man who is convicted of several crimes and sentenced to 10 years in a maximum security prison. Darnell is a car washer who hopes to buy a new house and take his family out of a bad neighborhood. So, James, in his ignorance, assumes Darnell is an ex-convict due to the color of his skin and offers to pay him for his assistance. Darnell is happy to accept. It doesn't really experiment much with the formula and it is very predictable by the end. I mean, you can see the ending from the beginning. Still, the story wasn't exactly bad.

I always have some trouble reviewing comedies since I don't watch many and I don't have much to say about them. So, I'll try to keep this short. Get Hard is a buddy comedy. It has a few relevant themes, including racial and financial themes, but it never really digs into them – they're only on the surface. To put it in layman's terms: this is a Ferrell and Hart comedy. Fortunately, if you're a fan of them, I think you'll find yourself with a few chuckles. Their brands of humor blend well to create a nice balance. I didn't laugh as much as I did during Step Brother – my personal favorite Ferrell movie – but I chuckled here and there. Okay, I laughed out loud at least twice. It might be inappropriate and offensive to certain audiences, but I'm rarely offended by anything in film, so that doesn't matter to me.

Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart perform well together – they have chemistry. They're not the best match, but their energy and humor work well. The supporting cast is also good. The soundtrack is mostly comprised of hip-hop. It's mostly modern rap, though, so don't expect anything good. (Ohhh!) The film looks good, at least. The film is written by Ethan Cohen, Ian Roberts, and Jay Martel; Cohen also directs. In terms of writing, there are some decent jokes and gags here, but it could have used its undertones a bit more. On top of that, the buddy comedy genre can really use a shake-up for the general formula – it's far too predictable. Cohen pulls solid performances from the leading man while creating a fairly balanced film – not bad for a directorial debut. I hope to see him experiment a bit more in the future.

Overall, Get Hard is a good comedy. It's not the most hilarious film ever, but it got me to chuckle and smile. It occasionally gets stale and repetitive, especially towards the generic ending, but I left entertained. If you're a fan of Ferrell or Hart, you might enjoy a rental of this.

Score: 6/10
Parental Guide: Some violence and blood, sex, and full nudity.

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