Ride Along 2 is no better or worse than the original. You’ve pretty much got the same type of jokes and the performances from its core cast isn’t anything special, though presumably they at least had a good time while filming. The action is rather ho-hum and although I don’t mind Kevin Hart, even he seemed to be going through the motions.
Ride Along 2
Genre(s): Action, Comedy, Crime
Universal Studios | PG13 – 102 min. – $34.98 | April 26, 2016
Date Published: 04/19/2016 | Author: The Movieman
THE MOVIE – 2.25/5
And the long line of needless sequels continues. Ride Along 2 is a extension of the adventures centered on Detective James Payton (ICE CUBE) and Probationary Officer Ben Barber (KEVIN HART) who are still on one another’s nerves despite Ben is now engaged to James’s sister, Angela (TIKA SUMPTER), who are to be wed in a week’s time.
A case James is working on leads him to a hacker in Miami. A.J. (KEN JEONG) once worked for all around criminal extraordinaire Antonio Pope (BENJAMIN BRATT) but is not being hunted for stealing money from him. Meanwhile, James needs A.J. to unlock a key piece of evidence. Against all reason, and no doubt because the screenplay says so, he reluctantly brings Ben along and as one would guess, hijinks are afoot.
Like the Fast and the Furious franchise, or any other buddy-cop movies, one doesn’t expect an elaborate plot and for the original Ride Along, it made for a perfectly acceptable time-waster courtesy of the tried and true oil and water formula with the two main characters. But like Hollywood tends to do, if a movie finds any success (the first movie did nab $154 million worldwide), a sequel was quickly made and the result… well, more of the same. I was actually surprised to find I gave both of these films the same rating (2.25/5).
As with the first, Ride Along 2 manages to stay out of the Turkey zone thanks to Ice Cube and Kevin Hart though this go around its clear they seemed to be going through the motions and don’t bring anything new to the table, though there were a couple scenes that gave me a chuckle, the rest? Not so much. On the plus side, Olivia Munn makes her debut as a potential love interest for Mr. Cube’s all-too-serious character and I suppose the action sequences weren’t terribly choreographed and filmed. Oh, and Tyrese does show up for about 5-minutes reminding you you’d much rather be watching one of the Fast movies over this.
Along with Cube and Hart, not to mention Tika Sumpter and Bruce McGill, the latter making more of a cameo appearance, Tim Story returns to the director’s chair proving I think to be the next McG or Brett Ratner, someone that’s not going to give you a great action movie but more serviceable and will please general audiences.
Returning to the director’s chair is Tim Story and its fairly standard fare for the guy. I don’t think he’s a lousy filmmaker but, as with the Fantastic Four films, doesn’t really bring anything new to the table. He can point and shoot, make action scenes watchable enough and doesn’t get a whole lot from his cast, not that the material is special anyway.
In the end, Ride Along 2 is the type of sequel that will be forgotten soon after the credits begin. The cast at least make it tolerable but no amount of talent can overcome script issues and unremarkable action sequences that one has seen in numerous movies that have come before, namely any number of the terrible direct-to-video flicks.
SPECIAL FEATURES – 2.5/5
This release comes with a title-embossed slip cover. Inside is the DVD Copy and redemption code for the Digital HD.
Deleted Scenes (8:40; HD) – Here we get six scenes that failed to make the cut and presumably it’s due to pacing issues; none of these were particularly interesting, funny or added to the plot.
Ride Along With Us (1:48; HD) is a promotional video with Hart and Cube in character advertising to join the Atlanta Police Department.
Gag Reel (3:47; HD) filled with the usual line flubs and on-set fun.
Behind the Scenes of Ride Along With Us (1:24; HD) are outtakes from the “Ride Along With Us” video.
The Ride Along Roundtable (15:52; HD) has actors Ice Cube and Kevin Hart along with Producer Will Packer and Director Tim Story sitting around discussing the sequel.
The Ride Diaries (20:28; HD) are a collection of short featurettes focusing on various scenes from the film. These were, from what I can tell, originally released online as a promotional tool.
Kevin & Cube: Brothers-in-Law (6:52; HD) – This focuses on the relationship between the pair and coming together for the sequel.
The New Recruits (6:21; HD) breaks down the new characters introduced.
Inside Black Hammer Vision (3:24; HD) shows how the car chase sequence was filmed, in particular Hart’s Barber drive and utilizing his GTA skills.
Ride Along with Kevin Hart (5:26; HD) is the day in the life (like) featurette of Hart during filming.
Cori’s Wedding Commercial (1:36; HD) is merely a mock ad for one of the film’s more useless characters.
Audio Commentary – Director Tim Story sits down for a basic but still informative track recounting the filming, brining Ice Cube and Kevin Hart back together and other general tid-bits. He probably could’ve used someone in the room just to keep things a bit livelier.
VIDEO – 4.5/5
|Universal Studios speeds Ride Along 2 onto Blu-ray presented in its original 2.40 widescreen aspect ratio and given a solid 1080p high-definition transfer (MPEG-4 AVC codec). It’s easy enough, given the bulk of the movie takes place in Miami, the bright, neon colors look brilliant in HD and detail is rather sharp and crisp throughout.|
AUDIO – 4.5/5
|The movie comes with a robust DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track which especially comes to life with the few action-centric scenes while all others, basically chatter and joke-making, provides clean dialogue levels. Everything else is pretty standard like the music yet still it’s a nice lossless track that may not be overly impressive, nor reference quality, is more than adequate for the movie this is…|
OVERALL – 2.75/5
|Overall, Ride Along 2 is no better or worse than the original. You’ve pretty much got the same type of jokes and the performances from its core cast isn’t anything special, though presumably they at least had a good time while filming. The action is rather ho-hum and although I don’t mind Kevin Hart, even he seemed to be going through the motions. All in all, this is a film that, like the first, will be instantly forgotten. The Blu-ray release has great video and audio transfers and some so-so bonus material.|
Check out some more screen caps by going to page 2. Please note, these do contain spoilers.