‘Central Intelligence’ Squanders the Charms of its Leading Duo

VANAPHASE™ the Vanadium powerhouse!

central-intelligence-0002

Kevin Hart and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson each have had their own unique path to movie stardom. The combination of the diminutive stand-up comedian and the hulking former wrestler is front and center in the action-comedy Central Intelligence, which sees the two as a former high school classmates with Johnson dragging Hart into the world of espionage. It doesn’t take long to see that the two stars have a strong chemistry together. However, it also doesn’t take long to see that they’re trapped in a woefully witless affair, as director Rawson Marshall Thurber takes the unlikely duo and an interesting concept and trudges along from cliché to cliché while hoping Hart and Johnson can carry the whole damned thing.

Central Intelligence begins with the two as seniors getting ready to graduate high school. Overweight and lonely, Robby Wierdich (Johnson manipulated with some creepy CGI over a body double in these earlier scenes) is bullied and set loose naked in a packed gymnasium as Calvin Joyner (Hart), “the Golden Jet,” is being levied with all the accolades for popular and charmed existence. Noticing the wounded looking Robby’s face, Calvin offers the embarrassed teen his letterman jacket, a gesture of kindness that he’d never encountered before. Though the film will flash-forward 20 years, these characters are entirely shaped and trapped by the shadow of their high school experience.

In the present day, Calvin is haunted by the promise that never came to fruition from his high school years. All he has to show for his life is an expansive suburban home, a marriage to his high school sweetheart Maggie (Danielle Nicolet), and a steady job as an accountant. Calvin’s career is stagnant as he watches former assistants get promoted over him, and his marriage is undergoing a stressful time of marital malaise. Before their upcoming 20-year high school reunion (because everything these characters care about is related to high school), Calvin accepts a friend request from Bob Stone, who turns out to be a reinvented Robby. Not long after the two get together for beers and Calvin allows Bob to stay the night at his place after checking something on the computer for him, CIA Agent Pamela Harris (Amy Ryan) arrives to question Calvin as to Bob’s whereabouts, claiming that Bob is a former CIA agent that killed his partner and is a threat to national security. Now Calvin must figure out if Bob is earnest in trying to unravel a conspiracy to clear his name or if Bob is a madman out to undermine the national interest.

Both Johnson and Hart are game with their characters, with Johnson especially having fun taking on a new dynamic to his persona, but they’re given absolutely nothing to work with. The script credited to Ike Barinholtz, David Stassen, and director Thurber (based on a story from Barinholtz and Stassen) simply wallows in clichés from each and every available angle. Aside from a few cameos, there’s not a surprise to be found in Central Intelligence as so many of the film’s story beats and jokes seem like they’ve been pulled from countless other bad movies of vastly superior quality. That lacking sense of unpredictability deprives the film of all the goodwill earned by its leads.

Rawson Marshall Thurber tries to show his eye for action in the various set pieces throughout the film, but it’s truly an eye in need of an optometrist. Whether car chases, gun fights, or fist fights, there’s no rhyme or reason to the shots cobbled together in a vain attempt to mimic the chaotic feel of the modern era’s worst aspects of action filmmaking. Yet Thurber doesn’t employ this aesthetic to parody the genre, instead opting for incomprehensibility due to sheer incompetence.

Like this year’s dismal The Do-Over (but better), Central Intelligence dabbles in a feeble attempt at parodying the buddy action film with diminished returns. That overwhelming sense of been-there-done-that which permeates through every scene is incredibly disappointing as its most rote aspects nullify what could’ve been the film’s most interesting aspect – is Bob Stone really crazy? There’s not even a fraction of the manic mispairings that you could expect from a Shane Black script. (Not that I expected Black-level work from the movie, but at least a sense of playfulness that Black brings to the genre of buddy action films.) All Central Intelligence offers is well-worn clichés and an abundance of pop culture references, few of which land. There’s probably not another movie this year that would start out with so much – a solid leading pair and an absurd concept – and return with such little. Kevin Hart and Dwayne Johnson are better than this, and deserve a vehicle to meet their talents. Central Intelligence squanders their talents, and everything else.

Central intelligence
  • Overall Score
2

Summary

The charismatic duo of Kevin Hart and Dwayne Johnson are squandered in the cliché-riddled, woefully unfunny Central Intelligence, perhaps the most predictable film of 2016.

YogaOutlet.com

Leave a Reply

Animation/Anime Interviews Animation/Anime News Animation/Anime Reviews Film/TV Interviews Film/TV News Film/TV Review
The Night Comes For Us
‘The Night Comes for Us’ is the Year’s Wildest Action Flick

Gareth Evans’ action flick The Raid was a game changer. It...

‘Titans’ Episode 2: Birds of a Feather

Last week’s Titans set up everything we want from the DCEU’s...

The Curse of La Llorona Trailer
Say Your Prayers Before Watching the ‘The Curse of La Llorona’ Trailer

Something terrible is coming. Details are scarce as to what we...

Event News Event Reviews
Alt 98.7 Presents Big Adventure: Music, Comedy & Comic Con Festival, Nov 3-4 in Orange County

In less than a month, Alt 98.7 Presents Big Adventure makes its debut,...

The 9th Annual Brew HA HA Craft Beer Photo Gallery

Photos by FanboyNation Craft Beer Expert, Dave Warner. Related

Long Beach Comic Con Photo Gallery

Related

Enabled Gaming Gaming News Gaming Reviews
Taco Bell Xbox
The Newest Taco Bell Box is an Xbox – Your Chance to Win a Taco Bell Xbox

Taco Bell and Xbox are partnering up to give fans a chance...

Exclusive Track Premiere from Madden NFL 19!

(July 26, 2018 – Los Angeles, CA) – Lakeshore Records today...

Star Ocean Anamnesis
8.0/10
The Most Intuitively Fun Gameplay of Any Mobile RPG – Star Ocean Anamnesis Review

Star Ocean Anamnesis is hands down the most fun and intuitive gameplay...

Comic Creator Interviews Comic/Graphic Novel News Comic/Graphic Novel Reviews Manga News Manga Reviews Novel/Novella Author Interviews Novel/Novella News Novel/Novella Reviews
Five Questions for Gary Morgenstein About ‘A Mound Over Hell’

Gary Morgenstein is a journalist, public relations expert and author with...

Ralph Breaks the Internet Graphic Novel
Dark Horse Disney Ralph Breaks the Internet Graphic Novel Revealed

Dark Horse reveals new original Disney Ralph Breaks the Internet Graphic...

black torch
Black Torch – New Supernatural, Action Manga from Viz Media

VIZ Media releases a new, supernatural story with the release of...

Apparel/Personal Maintenance News Apparel/Personal Maintenance Reviews Entertainment Product News Entertainment Product Reviews Food/Beverage Reviews Hardware News Hardware Reviews Mystery Box News Mystery Box Reviews
Eagle Eyes
Protect Your Eyes with Eagle Eyes Glasses – Eagle Eyes TV Kit Review

Eagle Eyes TV Kit review – Feel the difference and get...

Nooligan Talks About His New DC Collectibles Batman Family Line

Visual Artist Nooligan uses the influences of his First Nation ancestry along...

DC Collectibles Brings Batman Dark Nights: Metal to Life

Straight from the pages of the bestselling DARK NIGHTS: METAL comics series comes...

Arena Football Automotives MMA, Kick Boxing & Boxing Professional Wrestling
PFL 9 Lightweight and Light Heavyweight Semi-Final Results From Long Beach

Saturday, October 13, 2018 – Professional Fighters League (PFL) 9 took...

NJPW Fighting Spirit Unleased Results

New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) continues its West Coast domination with...

Combate Americas: Camino a Copa Combate Results from Long Beach

Tonight Combate Americas, the premiere Hispanic Mixed Martial Arts organization featured...

Adult Continuity Comics on the Can Cultural Junk Drawer Future Comic Rock Stars Is That Racist? Revisiting the Reviled THAT'S NOT ROTTEN! The B-Reel The Cantina Scene This Week in Crowdfunding What the HELL Did I just...?
Fantoy Comics presents: Harry Potter and the Cat Conjuring part ??? more of BEHOLD TACOCAT!

The next epic installment in the epic epicness Behold Tacocat! A...

Fantoy Comics presents: Harry Potter & the Cat Conjuring pt7 subsection1: Behold: Tacocat!

Tacocat comes to Hogwarts but is he friend or FOE?

Cultural Junkdrawer – Why is it so familiar? 2018 Summer movie recap.

In case you haven’t noticed: summer is over. Most of you...

Gaming Uncensored Toon-In-Talk
Coastal Commoners Ep 5 Kavanaugh, Dr. Ford and The Fourth Estate

This week on Coastal Commoners, R.C. and Gary speak with Riverdale...

Coastal Commoners Ep 4 Talking Baseball with Ernie Paicopolos of FenwayNation

This week, Gary and R.C. speak with Ernie Paicopolos, the Editor-in-Chief...

Coastal Commoners Ep 3 The Dirty World of Politics

Editor’s Note: The views reflected in Coastal Commoners are those of...

Music Interviews Music News Music Reviews
Deadpool 2 Vinyl Giveaway!

We are giving away a copy of Deadpool 2 Score Soundtrack on...

Crisis on Earth-X Soundtrack
Blake Neely Behind-the-Scenes Recording of Crisis on Earth-X Soundtrack

Check out this exclusive Behind-The-Scenes video with Blake Neely as he...

Rising Country Music Artist Kaylin Roberson Talks About her work with St. Jude

Kaylin Roberson is a singer, songwriter and pianist from Raleigh, North...

%d bloggers like this: