When I first saw previews for “Let’s Be Cops” I thought, “Finally, something original.” Is it just me or are screen writers getting less and less creative these days? I feel I can accurately lump an overwhelmingly large majority of recent movies into one of five categories:
- superhero movies
- Disney/fairytale re-makes, with a twist
- movies about cars
- movies adapted from books
Don’t get me wrong, there have been some occasional variations from these categories, such as “Transcendence,” “The Lego Movie,” and “Neighbors” (and it’s worth noting that it took me far too long to even find three examples). However, for the most part, I’m getting rather bored with the current creative levels of our screen writers. Nowadays, it seems that if any movie appears “original” or “different,” to me, I end up finding out that it was a book first. I have nothing against making books into movies, but I find it interesting that there haven’t been a lot of films released recently that have a unique plot that was entirely created by a screen writer. Until, of course, “Let’s Be Cops.”
The name, alone, sets the stage for a theme of nonchalant law-breaking, which is obviously a recipe for laughs. The movie doesn’t take itself too seriously, which allows the characters and the plot to follow an absurd, unrealistic story that gives the viewers a sense that anything can (and probably will) happen.
Given that I have been less than impressed with recent film plots, the fact that “Let’s Be Cops” was an original idea that I had never seen before intrigued me. Unfortunately, however, I had “22 Jump Street-like” expectations for the film, and they definitely fell short. I appreciate the comedic relief that Jake Johnson provides to his role as Nick, in “New Girl,” however his acting (and that of Damon Wayans Jr.) in this film was less than impressive. I believe this reveals the importance of good writing, as an actor is only as good as the script they are provided with. (Obviously there are immensely talented actors out there who can shine no matter what the circumstances, but my point is that the mediocre ones are only able to shine brightly when given good direction, cleverly created stories, and well-written lines.) Watching “Let’s Be Cops,” I was expecting the gut-busting hysteria of the Jump Street films, and I believe I only “lol’ed” once or twice. It was humorous, but not hilarious.
All in all, I think it was worth the time and money to appreciate and support a unique plot line, regardless of its execution, but I wish the film would have lived up to my expectations. Nevertheless, I applaud the idea and hope Luke Greenfield and Nicholas Thomas continue to expand their imaginations and create intriguing stories, hopefully with a better end result in the future.