Posted on Thursday, January 12th, 2017 by Ethan Anderton
The more we see TV shows like Baywatch and CHIPs turned into movies, the more realization sets in that the success of 21 Jump Street as a quality comedy was a small miracle.
While Baywatch doesn’t look bad, it just seems to be trying too hard to have the same blend of R-rated comedy and action that directing duo Phil Lord and Chris Miller delivered wonderfully with Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill. And now we have the first CHIPs trailer, revealing Dax Shepard (who also directs the comedy) and Michael Peña as unlikely partners in the California Highway Patrol. And if Baywatch is trying to be 21 Jump Street, than CHIPs is trying even harder to be its cool PG-13 cousin.
Watch the first CHIPs trailer after the jump.
Maybe I’m being a bit of a comedy snob here, but there wasn’t really anything here that made me laugh. This feels like Starsky & Hutch but without any of the chemistry and Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson had, and none of the style to make it stand out. Every joke seems painfully forced and not even Isiah Whitlock Jr. (who we didn’t even know was in this movie) can bring a chuckle.
Outside of Shepard and Peña, who can be funny individually but don’t seem to have any spark between each other in this trailer, the supporting cast includes Rosa Salazar (The Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials), Adam Brody (The OC), Kristen Bell (Forgetting Sarah Marshall) and Vincent D’Onofrio as the film’s villain, a corrupt cop.
It’s creative to have Peña’s character be an undercover cop given the alias of Frank “Ponch” Poncherello, but it’s not enough to make the movie as a whole that much more interesting. Maybe it’s just a rough first trailer, but I feel like I’m going to need some convincing to get excited for Dax Shepard’s latest turn as a director.
In CHIPs, Jon Baker (Dax Shepard) and Frank “Ponch” Poncherello (Michael Peña) have just joined the California Highway Patrol (CHP) in Los Angeles but for very different reasons. Baker is a beaten up pro motorbiker trying to put his life and marriage back together. Poncherello is a cocky undercover Federal agent investigating a multi-million dollar heist that may be an inside job—inside the CHP. The inexperienced rookie and hardened pro are teamed together, but clash more than click, so kickstarting a partnership is easier said than done. But with Baker’s bike skills combined with Ponch’s street savvy it might just work… if they don’t drive each other crazy along the way.
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