It doesn't take Siskel or Ebert to smell a dud when the mistake is this obvious. In the previews for "Central Intelligence", the one thing that we all take away from the movie is that Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is playing the cut-up and Kevin Hart is playing the nerdy, anal-retentive sidekick.
It's yet another "duck-out-of-water" flick (you know, when a mild-mannered everyman or everywoman is thrown into an unexpected situation and has to either sink or swim) that suffers from one huge, glaring and ultimately fatal flaw: Hart and The Rock are in the wrong roles.
By that, I mean Kevin Hart has made a name for himself on the comedy stage and in numerous films as the crazy, unfiltered cut-up while The Rock has shown true range in "duck out of water" flicks like "The Game Plan" and "Tooth Fairy".
Yet you just know that both actors' agents have urged them to take different roles so as not to get pigeonholed, but, let's face it, either one of those guys should be so lucky. I mean, Kevin Hart is a stand-up comedian. Therefore, the last thing anybody wants to pay to see is Kevin Hart play the straight man in a comedy film.
By the same token, The Rock is an action figure come to life. If you're making a gladiator film or some period piece where the hero has never worn a shirt in his life, Dwayne Johnson is your guy. Also, as stated above, he really shines in certain comedy roles.
Channeling my inner Hollywood executive, it would have been so much funnier to see Kevin Hart playing the crazy, rules-be-damned CIA agent while The Rock played the nerdy accountant he recruits for an action-packed mission.
The Rock in black frame glasses and wearing a pocket protector with a business shirt that can barely contain his hulking muscles. That would have been comedy gold!
Come on, Hollywood, you're better than this. I mean, you're not, but you could be.