The Village Voice
A sure-bet time-waster with a clutch of big laughs? A hundred-minute brief on Hollywood's lack of imagination? Grist for future essays about how quickly the idea of Ice "Fuck tha Police" Cube playing a gun-happy hero cop became routine? Whatever you make of Ride Along 2 beforehand is certain to be what you make of it as you cruise with it. Tim Story's sequel — to a buddy-cop comedy that itself was only "original" in the legal sense — is made up entirely of scenes you've seen before, starring actors you're familiar with doing the kinds of things that they usually do. Like your smartphone, it's a testament to the theory of interchangeable parts, a perfectly engineered product that, if you're charitable, you might also think of in terms of art. There's certainly culture-pretzeled weirdness to behold here, some of it deliberate: the tense early scene where Cube confronts Atlanta's top drug dealer, a scary white man, until pipsqueak Kevin Hart bounces up in a low-rider Impala, bumping Iggy Azalea's "Fancy"? When I fire my pistol, you can start your think pieces.