It seems Kevin Hart has established himself as one of the most in-demand actors in the buddy comedy genre. Within a few years, we've seen Hart pair up with celebrity actors from Will Ferrell (Get Hard, 2015), The Rock (Central Intelligence, 2016) and Ice Cube (Ride Along, 2016) to Woody Harrelson (The Man From Toronto, 2022).
From his days as a stand-up comedian to a major star, Hart has always been Hart. I mean, if you enjoy his typical underdog hero character whose delivery involves loudly whining, yelling and non-stop complaining, you will get all that in almost every movie he's in. However, his certain typecast also has a downside because no matter how well he can pull off a character, it always depends on a good script. But the magic will not work each time.
Hart is back in Netflix's new comedy Me Time, where he plays the role of Sonny Fisher, a devoted stay-at-home husband and dad who finds himself free for the first time in years when his wife encourages him to take a break. While his wife and kids are away to visit her family, Sonny decides to reconnect with his former best friend Huck Dembo (Wahlberg) from his school years and attend his birthday bash over the weekend. That's when all hell breaks loose for Sonny.
While looking into the credits of Me Time, I noticed it was directed by John Hamburg, the filmmaker who has previously made decent comedies like Along Came Polly (2004) and I Love You, Man (2009), so I was somewhat confident this film could be a good one. But unfortunately, this is not the case for Me Time.
There's nothing new about the plot of this film. We've seen this kind of story many times before, and though it may not be the same execution, it is certainly a typical buddy movie in which there's one who's boring and the other who's crazy. These two then go on an adventure and we see a character go nuts, get into all sorts of self-made trouble, and make a mess of everything that he holds dear. Then, he has to learn a lesson in order to put everything back together again. The visuals of this movie are also nothing special. In fact, there are a couple of times where CGI is used and it is poor. Whether it's the opening scene where there is a skydiving sequence, or later when a character is being chased by a mountain lion, the CGI looks fake and constantly reminds us that this is just a TV movie.
I did enjoy the dynamic between Sonny and Huck, especially the sarcastic moments shared between them. The actors both have some decent chemistry, but I really wish the script would have been a little more interesting and dove more into character conflicts. Regina Hall plays Sonny's wife Maya, and I liked her for what she gets to do, but a lot of the time her character is just in the background. All she did in this movie was just react to Sonny's idiocy in different situations.
The biggest problem I found about Me Time is it isn't all that funny. What's the first thing a comedy has to do? It has to be funny. I know this is supposed to be just a mindless buddy comedy and I'm willing to forgive some of the flaws, but I couldn't do it because I wasn't laughing that much. It's full of unfunny, forced slapstick comedy and high jinks we must sit through until the credits roll. The script is exceptionally lazy, as it too often relies on Hart and Wahlberg to keep the fun going rather than generate genuine love from actual jokes.
Ultimately, if you have something else to watch on your "me time", then I'd suggest skipping this movie.
- Me Time
- Starring Kevin Hart, Mark Wahlberg, Regina Hall
- Directed by John Hamburg
- Now streaming on Netflix