First, you can't really go wrong with casting Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. The guy has so much charisma I'm mostly certain that people would watch him talk about soap for 2 hours. You can't help but find the guy entertaining because his personality is electric. Second, Kevin Hart is probably one of the funnier comedians around right now because of his personality. His jokes might not always hit but you can guarantee that people will laugh at a bad joke when his animated self takes over on stage or screen and blows up into something uniquely special. So putting these two talents in a film together made perfect sense to me. They're both funny, entertaining and charismatic.
The film itself however didn't quite hit for me the way I had hoped. The characters on screen felt awkward more than they did humorous. It also took far too long to establish the personality of Johnson's character. His overacting and hyper enthusiasm felt unnatural and uncomfortable for me. It's eventually revealed why he acts that way but I would've preferred to get that information sooner than later. At times, especially in the beginning, he's almost creepy. It was an odd choice but eventually it paid off, kinda.
The story is pretty simple as well. The basic plot is that the CIA believes Johnson's character has murdered his partner and is hunting him down because of the information they believe he has. Of course, it's revealed that he isn't the bad guy but by the time the big reveal occurs I didn't really care because I had concluded that all on my own. The story itself was still entertaining because you have Hart and Johnson leading the charge. Their chemistry on screen was probably my favorite part of the film. These two played off each other so well. Even though the story itself didn't do anything for me, their relationship and interactions did. I'm actually curious if there will be a sequel just because of how much fun watching those two together was.
The ancillary characters in the film were decent. There is one character who is beyond obnoxious in that he overacts so much in his brief on screen moments I was actually glad he is knocked out by use of a taser. I felt relief knowing he won't be talking anymore in that scene because he's tasered on the floor. So that was a moment of positive film making as far as I was concerned.
"Central Intelligence" is in theaters now. Sadly, I won't be recommending you view this on the big screen unless you want to laugh and enjoy the main actors. The story is decent, the overall tone is fun but it takes awhile to develop an understanding of the characters themselves and the ending is predictable. It's a fun movie and if you do decide to make it out to the theaters, go for a big screen viewing. You will laugh but you won't walk out of the theater, necessarily, with that same sense of "wow" that you got from action comedies like "Beverly Hills Cop" or Lethal Weapon" films. It's definitely worth seeing on Redbox or VOD.
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