The Bottom Line: One man’s brash is another man’s pleasure. I guess it’s fairly easy to understand someone taking offense to the antics on display here – heck, even the title is something you’d whisper depending on who’s within earshot. This, like most of Ferrell’s stuff, is an over-the-top bonanza of uptight critic fodder. Negative reviews are swirling with aggressive adjectives regarding the movie’s handling of sexuality, racism, homophobia and at length discussions of prison rape (and by ‘at length’ I mean…well, I guess I mean a few different things). If you’re looking for political correctness in a Will Ferrell movie then – well, then this must be your first Will Ferrell movie. The Get Hard gang isn’t here to promote an anti-anything agenda, it’s not here to tackle social issues – it’s here to mine the inherent comedy that exists when an impending prison term is bestowed upon a white, wealthy, soft-bellied, Brillo-haired, country club-dwelling man of privilege. Ferrell is once again tossed in to the know-it-all-who-really-knows-nothing mold while Hart plays the straight-laced but hood-bred opportunist looking to move on up (for the sake of his wife and daughter). In addition to the straight into Compton scenarios, the verbal fumbling and physical tumbling, a majority of the laughs – of which there are many – are brought about by the pairing of these two comedic icons. Each of their bob-and-weave improv stylings complements the other rather well. So there’s the people who’ll roll with the line-toeing comedy and have a grand time, the people who will legitimately be offended (don’t go; totally understand) and the people who won’t be directly offended but figure it must offend someone so they’ll now be offended as well (don’t sit near ‘em). Admittedly, the wafer-thin, wet paper bag story is only in play to set up this special brand of funny – it’s not ground breaking or life changing. Its 110 minutes of so-so storytelling that unfortunately fizzles out in a rushed and unfocused fashion. If it’s funny, I’ll laugh – and I laughed quite a bit. Get Hard may go soft at the end, but it’s difficult to deny that Ferrell and Hart make for a rousing comedic duo.
Starring: Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart
Directed by: Etan Cohen (screenwriter for Men in Black III, Madagascar 2 and Idiocracy)
Running time: 110 minutes
Story: A wealthy investment bank manager is convicted of a crime he didn't commit and prepares for prison with help from the guy who washes his car.
Official site: www.gethardmovie.com