A promising vehicle for the scatological humour that writer/director Kevin Smith has made his trademark since Clerks, Cop Out features Bruce Willis and 30 Rock’s Trace Morgan as Jimmy Monroe and Paul Hodges, two Brooklyn cops whose decade-long professional friendship is tested by domestic matters.
In an old-school plot, Monroe sets out to sell a rare baseball card to pay for his daughter’s wedding, but while Hodges is distracted by suspicions of his wife’s infidelity, the card gets stolen, forcing the two policemen to shake down a variety of NYC low-life characters to get it back.
Originally titled A Couple of Dicks, Cop Out was surprisingly written not by Smith but by sibling TV writers Robb and Mark Cullen. Their script, however, reflects many of Smith’s usual obsessions of modern manhood; the dangers of sexual jealousy, the importance of camaraderie, and the usual salty stream of sexual swear words.
Featuring a retro score by Beverly Hills Cop’s Harold Faltermeyer, Cop Out is aimed at nothing more than an 80’s action/comedy throwback in the mould of Pineapple Express. The problem is that Smith doesn’t have the same feel for action as he does dialogue, and despite lively work from Willis and Morgan, Cop Out never really delivers on its simple idea.
General release from Fri 21 May.