The plot in brief: It doesn’t matter. JJ and DWJ pretend to be cops and cross paths with a Russian (?) crime lord played by James D’Arcy – actually quite good despite chewing gum in practically every scene. The girl the DWJ character is crushing on is played by Nina Dobrev (from The Vampire Diaries and reportedly having a great hair season according to People Magazine!). She’s a fucking bubblehead. It’s the type of dumb character that only exists in movies. She is a waitress that wants to be a makeup special effects designer but the busts she has in her apartment look like the shit you would papier-mâché at a kid’s birthday party.
And yet Let’s Be Cops is not a complete loss. Just when the movie has seemingly gone off the rails, there’s an introduction of a character that saves the movie and for a few minutes it becomes funny. This happens twice, first with the introduction of a trampy character played by Natasha Leggero (a hoot and sexy despite the fact that she’s not supposed to be sexy) and then with the snitch/informant played by Keegan-Michael Key. Key is awesome in this movie. All of the scenes in which he appears are the best scenes in Let’s Be Cops, including a scene where an undercover Damon Wayans Jr. ingests crystal meth and starts flipping out. I wish more scenes worked the way that one works. It’s because the movie finally just doesn’t give a shit and goes crazy.
Patrick and Doug have mentioned on the podcast that many comedies have third act problems, devolving into a chase or action because there no idea how to end the movie. Let’s Be Cops falls victim to this. In fact, there are hardly any jokes in the last 30 minutes of the movie at all. It just becomes a sub-par action movie with predictable reveals and turns. It’s a bummer.
I was so disappointed by Let’s Be Cops. This should have been Beverly Hills Cop or The Blues Brothers-good and it’s not. I didn’t realize I disliked this movie so much until I started writing this review. It’s not great in the moment; when you give it any thought, it’s terrible. It glorifies mindlessness. I can’t believe people got out of bed every morning and went to work for months to make this.