A film that promises  “a little Hart and a big Johnson”… Give the guy in Marketing who came up with that tagline a raise.


After Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story and We’re the Millers, director Rawson Marshall Thurber gives us another comedy film of guilty pleasure level of satisfaction. With Dwayne Johnson, arguably the busiest Hollywood actor right now, and Kevin Hart, whose comedic act is still relatively hot, in the lead roles, there is potential for good laughs.

The film centers on the life of forensics accountant Calvin Joyner (Hart), who goes on a middle age slump as he reminisce his golden days in high school. His mundane life turns upside down when his high school batchmate and former obese man Robbie Weirdicht (Johnson), who now goes by the name of Bob Stone, sends a friend request in Facebook. Because of an act of kindness Joyner committed 20 years ago, Stone asks him to spend the night together and have a few drinks. Little did Joyner know that Stone is a CIA agent tracking down a criminal known as the Black Badger.

There is no argument that Hart and Johnson work well together. Their chemistry is dynamic and fun, and it is evidently shown in the bloopers during the credits and the “couples therapy” scene. It really felt that Johnson was a man-child, and it just bums me out that he did not choose to be Captain Marvel/Shazam in the upcoming 2019 movie.

However, the chemistry between the two stars is the only reason why this movie is barely a film. They have charisma and energy, and they easily gave the best out of a script better suited for  an SNL skit. Some jokes were funny just because of the sheer likability of the principal actors.

Plot points were introduced but were thrown away or resolved in childishly easy ways. The “Who is the Black Badger” sub-plot/question was on its highest point after a well-executed scene but was later resolved quickly and ignored the intrigue of the previous scene.

Central Intelligence is an entertaining guilty-pleasure film mainly because of its two main actors. Remove them and you have a weaker movie. Because of that, this film is just* 


* There is a difference between It is good! and It’s just good.

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