Let’s Be Cops
Posted August 13, 2014 by Daniel Hodgson in
To be honest, I was prepared to make a perfunctory screening of Let’s Be Cops, publish a snarky, four-word review, “How about let’s not,” and call it a day.
And then the movie surprised me. It’s funny. It’s funnier than 22 Jump Street, and worlds fresher. Your average, run-of-the-mill cop movie has the cops pretending to be crooks. Let’s Be Cops reverses that.
Ryan (Jake Johnson) and his friend and roommate Justin (Damon Wayans Jr.) go to a costume party dressed as cops (although Ryan quickly finds out that a costume party and a masquerade are not the same thing). Walking home, they notice people looking at them differently. Chicks dig guys in uniform, and a group of hotties lay big wet kisses on them. They sure could get used to this.
They tell random strangers, “Freeze!” for kicks, and confiscate a joint for personal use. Justin wants to go back to his day job as a game programmer, but Ryan is hooked, and buys a squad car from Ebay.
Let’s Be Cops is funniest in its first half, before the plot takes over. Ryan and Justin can’t even break up a cat fight at a sorority, but find themselves going up against Mossi (James D’Arcy) and his gang of thugs. The story hits predictable beats before the credits roll, and a shift from comedy to action doesn’t quite work. The way the climax plays out is a no-no, and prevents Justin from finishing his character arc and manning-up already—something we’ve spent the entire movie waiting for.
However, I enjoyed the story’s loopy premise, and the movie has one good laugh-out-loud sight-gag that it milks for all its worth. I haven’t laughed that hard all year. I won’t spoil it; you’ll know it when you see it.