run time: 104 mins
director: Luke Greenfield
starring: Jake Johnson, Damon Wayans Jr., Rob Riggle, Nina Dobrev, James D’Arcy, Keegan-Michael Key, Andy Garcia, Jonathan Lajoir, Tom Mardirosian, Natasha Leggero, Rebecca Koon, Joshua Ormond, L. Warren Young, Nelson Bonilla, Brian Oerly
movie summary: Ryan (Jake Johnson) and his best friend Justin (Damon Wayans Jr.) are both in their mid-thirties and going nowhere in life. Ryan is a washed up college quarterback who never made it pro while Justin is a video game programmer that no one in the office likes or listens to. The pair moved from Ohio to Los Angeles with the hopes of making it big but when reality sinks in they decide that maybe it’s time to pack up and leave. In an attempt to have fun one more time in the big city the pair attend a costume party as cops where they get laughed out of the building. Frustrated the pair decide to walk back home in their cop uniforms only to have people on the streets think they are real cops.
The pair get kissed by beautiful girls and have a blast yelling “freeze” at kids on skateboards making them fall every time. Justin takes his uniform off when he gets home and puts it away while Ryan begins to think that this is his true calling. While his roommate is gone to work Ryan spends the day watching cop videos on YouTube and buying police equipment on eBay, including a used cop car. While Justin is driving home he is pulled over by a LAPD car fully equipped with lights and sirens. When he is ordered out of the car with his hands raised in the air Ryan runs up and jumps on him. The pair have a few laughs before agreeing to drive around the city in the cruiser looking to bust people.
While on “patrol” the guys run into a mobster named Mossi (James D’Arcy) and his crew who are terrorising a local diner threatening the owners. Justin’s crush Josie (Nina Dobrev) is a waitress there and fears that her bosses may be killed by Mossi because they refuse to sell him the business. The pair roll onto the scene and manage to scare the mobsters away but not without a few verbal threats and cold stares. Mossi turns to his police friend Brolin (Andy Garcia) to find out who these two idiot cops are and how he can get rid of them. Brolin runs their badges to find out they don’t work for the LAPD and fears they could work for a federal agency or another high level government agency.
One night while driving around they get pulled over by the real LAPD, Ryan has added Sergeant strips to his uniform so the arresting officer Segars (Rob Riggle) feels like an idiot for pulling over one of his superiors and lets him go. Across the street a store is being broken into and the four of them run over to check out the scene. When the real action starts Justin and Ryan bolt leaving the real cops wondering who they really were. Ryan goes to confess his actions to Segars only to have him think he’s pulling a prank and asks for his help track down and bust Mossi. Justin thinks the idea is crazy but begins to help his best friend perform stake outs at a warehouse owned by Mossi. Soon the mobsters are onto to the fake cops and kidnap Ryan, while Justin gets fired from his real job. In an attempt to catch Justin off guard Mossi sent one of his hit men into to kill him at work. After surviving the ambush at the office Justin calls Segars to explain the situation and ask for his back up to rescue Ryan and bring Mossi down.
my thoughts: It’s been quite a while that a movie so unrealistic and dumb will have you laughing from start to finish. I was a little tired when I got to see Let’s Be Cops on Wednesday night which would explain why I laughed for the first 45 minutes and then stopped. The jokes were great through out but something happened after the half way mark that made me lose interest in the story and it’s characters.
Most of you will know by now I don’t watch TV shows so I had no clue who Jake Johnson and Damon Wayans Jr. were. Through some research I found out that they are both on the show New Girl which would explain how they have amazing chemistry together. They form a funny duo that has no awkwardness despite the fact they are complete opposites. Justin has a conservative personality while Ryan is reckless and never thinks of the consequences of his actions. If either one of them were actually successful both on a professional and personal level their time as fake cops would have never had a chance to happen. Out of their desperation to be someone comes a funny and wonderful thing that will change both their lives for the better.
The ending of this movie is very predictable and even though you think it will end a certain way, it actually throws us a curveball and finishes in a different direction. I was thinking this movie had sequel written all over it and even though it didn’t end the way I thought it would but there are still numerous opportunites a sequel.
my final thoughts: No matter what I say or recommend most of you will still head out to see Let’s Be Cops this weekend and will have a great time. Like I always say, the great thing about movies is we can all agree to disagree on what we like or love. Let’s Be Cops is on par with Ride Along for me, a funny one-time watch that probably wouldn’t be as funny the second time around.
my star rating: 6 out 10
rottentomatoes.com: 9% out 100%
rogerebert.com: 1.5 out 4