If every comedy was like this one, I wouldn’t have to write articles like this. Now don’t build up your expectations, “Let’s be cops” is not a comedic masterpiece, but it’s far from being shit as well.
“Let’s be Cops” stars Jake Johnson and Damon Wayans Jr. as 30-something losers Ryan and Justin, who find that life can be so much better if you just put on a police uniform. It’s directed by Luke Greenfield, who takes the simple premise and a good ensemble and puts together a thoroughly entertaining and enjoyable comedy.
Most of the dialogue in this film at least that spoken by professional comedians, is improvised. As I lined out in my article on comedy, too much improvisation isn’t always a good thing. It keeps the filmmakers limited in their comedic resources. This shows here as well. While there is some visual comedy, all the action-scenes are by-the-book. As is the case in too many comedies these days, the filmmakers never really try to find jokes in new places.
Apart from that though, you can’t really complain about mostly improvisational comedy if it works, I guess. And in this case, it does. Especially in the first half, which consists mainly of short skits showing Ryan’s and Justin’s exploits as new fake cops. Johnson and Wayans Jr. play on the chemistry that they already built on the set of “New Girl” and the supporting cast makes sure things don’t get boring.
The directing, as I’ve mentioned, isn’t spectacular, but functional, which makes the second half, that plays more on action than on jokes, slightly inferior to the first, but never so much that it is actually bad.
In conclusion, “Let’s be Cops” might not be a great comedy, but it is certainly entertaining. Johnson and Wayans Jr. have good chemistry and the film doesn’t overdo its jokes. It’s certainly more enjoyable than most other comedies out these days.