Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart are funny people. Unfortunately, “Get Hard” is not a funny movie. It meanders around for over an hour and a half and never really does anything particularly clever or worth remembering. The next morning after watching it, I recalled laughing at a few individual lines, but I couldn’t even remember what those lines were. This is just another assembly line comedy, which I mostly expected due to the reviews, but I still had some hope for the oddball duo of Hart and Ferrell, with a side of Alison Brie and Craig T. Nelson.
Ferrell plays James, a well-intentioned but completely clueless hedge fund manager. He works for his father-in-law Martin (Nelson), who makes him a partner at the firm before James is to marry his daughter Alissa (Brie). This turns out to be a setup, as James is framed for some nefarious deeds, and is given 30 days to get his affairs in order before heading off to the clink.
The film’s other lead, Hart, plays Darnell, a hardworking owner of a car wash company who has the sole goal of getting his buying a house in a better neighborhood so his young daughter can go to a better school. Darnell washes cars in the parking garage that James uses daily, and James sees an opportunity here. James assumes that Darnell, a black man, has been to prison so he offers Darnell a large sum of money to prepare him. He believes that he needs to “Get Hard” (ha, that’s the title of the movie!) in order to survive in prison. Darnell, without as much as a parking ticket on his record, needs the money badly enough that he agrees to this ridiculous scenario.
As a setup this is pretty goofy, but it’s far from the craziest thing I’ve ever heard. I believe that almost any plot or storyline can be made entertaining or enjoyable, but that just doesn’t happen here. We have a somewhat interesting concept of the obliviously racist rich white guy seeking help from a black man, but that quickly gets buried under a series of weak jokes with stale punchlines, some of which take forever to even arrive. Some of this may be due to the fact that I watched the Unrated version of the film (with seven additional minutes), but it’s not as if any of these jokes even started off funny in the first place anyway.
Despite the talented cast, this is just another scrap-heap comedy destined to be thought of in the future as “yeah, I think Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart were in a movie together once.”
12 special features are included on this Blu-ray release: “Just Put Your Lips Together and Blow,” “GET HARD Line-O-Ramas,” “The Kevin Hart Workout,” “Face Off with Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart,” “Ferrell Fighting,” “A Date with John Mayer,” “Twerking 101,” “Will Ferrell, Gangsta,” “Inmates: Out of Control,” “Bikers, Babes and Big Bangs,” “Gag Reel,” and “Deleted Scenes.”
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment presents Get Hard. Directed by Etan Cohen. Screenplay by Etan Cohen, Jay Martel & Ian Roberts. Story by Adam McKay, Jay Martel & Ian Roberts. Starring Will Ferrell, Kevin Hart, Tip “T.I.” Harris, Alison Brie, and Craig T. Nelson. Run Time: 100 minutes. Rated R. Released June 30, 2015.