A rookie officer is teamed with a hardened pro at the California Highway Patrol, though the newbie soon learns his partner is really an undercover Fed investigating a heist that may involve some crooked cops.
Jon Baker (Shepard) and Frank Ponch Poncherello (Peña) have just joined the California Highway Patrol (CHP) in Los Angeles, but for very different reasons. Baker is a beaten-up former 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 the hardened pro are teamed together, but clash more than click, so kick-starting a real partnership is easier said than done. But with Baker's unique bike skills and Ponch's street savvy it might just work...if they don't drive each other crazy first. Written by
As a preface, I have never seen an episode of the original show; I knew Estrada was in it and that's all. So, if you're a fan of the series, I cannot say whether you will enjoy this film (though based on other reviews I've read, it seems unlikely).
What I can tell you is that I had low expectations and just wanted a laugh. Dax Sheppard's films have always been hit-or-miss for me. When I bought the tickets, I wasn't even aware that it was rated R.
I was very pleasantly surprised! My friend and I both laughed non-stop at the off-the-wall humor. The success of the jokes was in the delivery
often very deadpan and unexpected. Some reviewers complained about
the sex addiction/masturbation jokes, but I found them hilarious due to Sheppard's sincere concern and Peña's awkward embarrassment.
As a motorcyclist, I very much enjoyed all the bike action and liked that they kept it relatively realistic (but don't look for realism as a general rule; that's not what comedy is about) regarding the necessary skills (Ponche thought he could match Baker and was sorely mistaken) and the comparative speed of a lightweight sport bike vs. the clunky cruisers. I also loved that, when they upgraded to sport bikes themselves, they wore proper full-body riding gear instead of promoting riding in street clothes as most films do.
In short: this is a riot, not an Oscar-winner. Go for laughs, not for a serious cop film.
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