Ride Along is a fun movie, not a great movie by any means, but a simple fun movie. The dynamic relationship between Ice Cube and Kevin Hart is worth the price of admission alone, but be warned the overuse of jokes and the lack in character development will leave you a little empty handed.
The personality of Kevin Hart is what keeps this film going, there are almost zero times where Ice Cube is funny, but rather just used as a concept of contrast to Hart’s character, Ben Barber. In saying this, I found it hard to stop laughing at the quirky remarks of Hart as he battles to make the audience laugh through the predictable and cliche script. Director Tim Story proves that he is unable to blend the two concepts of action and comedy together so neither in fact work well at all. The characterisation of the two lead roles are incredibly basic leaving the audience feeling a little cheated, let me explain, Hart’s character is an incredibly predictable man who wants more out of his life, with a very anxious personality, whilst Cube’s character is used just to produce a stone cold performance which leaves nothing to the imagination. I was waiting for Cube’s character to develop into a much more laughable role rather than the ‘muscle’ of the duo. The best parts of the film is when Cube didn’t talk or rather wasn’t present in the scene at all, the moments when Hart was in his ‘think like a man’ mode, whether it be having a monologue pretending to be more courageous than he actually is or rather playing video games with his faceless gamer friends, it is these moments which make this film incredibly charming. The director should have learnt from 21 Jump Street, another buddy cop film that blended the two concepts of comedy and action perfectly, another film where Ice Cube played the tough cold stoned character, but rather was funny compared to Ride Along. This is why the film was so mixed, the moments whenever Kevin Hart spoke made the film so much better, it is clear that if they didn’t have him in the movie at all, it would be getting a lower score.
Whenever a film has an element of mystery in it, it shouldn’t be predictable in any way as it defeats the purpose of the mystery in the first place. Unfortunately, Ride Along, is incredibly predictable, never straying away from the road of cliche, which is disappointing. Although saying this, you don’t go see a movie like this for the story, you go and see it for a laugh, and Hart brings the comedy. There is something so funny watching an incredibly short over confident man walking up to some huge bikers and explaining they have to move their bikes out of a disabled parking spot, and the fact that he never backs down is even funnier. Even though the joke of Hart’s personality that has created his career is incredibly over used to a point in which every joke is a reference to it, it still never gets old. There is one scene where Hart is doped up on medicine, it is one of the funniest moments in cinema this year, the delivery of the quirky one liners make this scene so perfect. The score of the film has to be commended, even though we have all heard it all before, it still suits the scenes perfectly without fault, if only the whole movie was done this well it would be as good as 21 Jump Street. Ride Along tries to be so much more than it is, with one actor playing the full extent of his role, it is difficult to imagine if you will remember this film in a year or so. It is a movie that is fun to watch, at times extremely fun, but it does nothing to stand out amongst the comedies of the year.
Ride Along will have you laughing out loud at times, but to be honest, those times are few and far between. Hart carries the movie through his incredibly funny personality, the price of admission would be appropriate to anyone who is a fan of this comedian otherwise Ride Along is a solid rental.
I give this film 6.5/10.