Central Intelligence Review

We’ve seen a fair share of buddy comedies that totally hit each note right. But as the tagline warranted: “Saving the world takes a little Hart and a big Johnson.” By the way, that tagline has grown on me. Central Intelligence is already set with the promising chemistry between Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart to which it could end up a funny action comedy. For the most part, it kind of achieved that possibility while also being original as it can be. but not so much.

For one, Johnson and Hart worked well together. Even off screen, they seem to have a believable friendship. Johnson plays a bit against type as this as he was a fat dude who was bullied in high school and is now has muscles who’s also in the C.I.A. He was a little annoying at first and you feel like Hart where you don’t want to be in the situation. But he’s just having fun in this role. Hart plays the straight man and also against type in this, which is a bit different because in the Ride Along franchise or The Wedding Ringer, it’s been done over so many times, but he was still good. He still yells sometimes but not so much as usual.

Kevin Hart and Dwayne Johnson in Central Intelligence (2016)

As they meet 20 years later, they must find these U.S. satellite codes to save the world with Hart becoming a part this situation wanting none of this. From a story standpoint, it sounds fine. But not all that realistic. Director Rawson Marshall Thurber (Dodgeball, We’re the Millers), who also wrote with writers, The Mindy Project’s Ike Barinholtz and David Stassen, should’ve done a lot more to this story because it does end up with a lot of magnitude behind it.

The plot is pretty predictable enough to where the beats get a bit repetitive and as it kept going, there wasn’t a lot of enjoyment later on. Tone wise it was a mess sometimes to where the action, well directed, was serious and it could’ve had a bit a humor put in there. Most of the jokes were there and so many of them fall flat. Nothing was laugh out loud funny, to be honest.

Kevin Hart and Dwayne Johnson in Central Intelligence (2016)

But it got boring later on leaving you uninterested. Like it tried to be better than it should’ve been for its own sake. It won’t be a surprise if this gets a sequel but hopefully, it would gain a better story.

Central Intelligence suffers from a predictable plot but it didn’t hurt its chemistry between Johnson and Hart.

Grade: B-

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