Let’s Be Cops

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Code Four – all clear here.

Touted as this summer’s ultimate buddy cop movie, Let’s Be Cops launches right into a stream of one-liners, cop movie clichés, and situational absurdities without so much as reading your Miranda rights.

College buddies that find themselves in a rut years after moving to L.A., video game assistant Justin (Damon Wayans Jr.) fatefully brings home police uniforms one night as part of a new game he’s pitching. Ex-college football star roommate Ryan (Jake Johnson) thinks they’d be perfect for an alumni costume party later that night – only it’s a masquerade. Embarrassed, they’re heading home down the mean streets of L.A. when something strange happens: people think they’re real cops.

buddy cop

At first just messing around, the New Girl co-stars start taking their “civic duties” a bit too far. So far, in fact, they’re too deep to turn back. Johnson, searching for his new purpose in life, approaches the opportunity guns blazing. Wayans, while hesitant at first, is drawn in by the “perks” of the job.

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As Johnson and Wayans attempt to prove their mettle on the force, a great supporting cast helps keep the plot fresh and moving forward. Rob Riggle plays a more subdued character than he’s normally cast for in Officer Segars, and it’s nice to see the changeup. As mentioned before, the main perk that keeps Wayans playing along is the makeup-artist-turned-waitress Josie (Nina Dobrev) that now finds him attractive. The damsel in distress, Dobrev plays into the role well.

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Contributing great comedic injections, Keegan-Michael Key’s stereotypical performance as the crazy informant Pupa offers new material for this classic buddy cop storyline. Similarly, Jon Lajoie turns in a typical “dick boss” performance as Todd Cutler, and Natasha Leggero is the memorable stakeout surprise Annie.

The storyline can, at times, feel trite and overdone when the director is trying quite hard to make you feel a specific emotion. In the end, you get what you pay for. But I’ve never been upset about getting a box of donuts after ordering a box of donuts.

3/5 reels

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