Movie Review: Night School

When it comes to stand-up comedy, Kevin Hart is one of the best comedians to come around in many years. His story telling, facial expressions and natural ability to make people laugh are all about as good as it gets. This is why his stand-up movie specials are some of the best ever produced. Unfortunately, his excellent stand-up talent has yet to translate into a comedy movie that has been memorable – and this includes his latest movie also starring Tiffany Hadish, “Night School”. Writing and producing a great comedy movie is probably the most difficult to create and you cannot just put in some slap-stick scenes and think that the movie is going to be funny because of physical comedy. The problem with Night School is that there is too much physical slap-stick comedy with Kevin Hart and Tiffany Hadish – including some ridiculous wrestling scenes that were never funny. The other actors in this movie including Rob Riggle, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Taran Killam, Romany Malco and Ben Schwartz all seemed like they were sleep walking through their roles, hoping that the months of shooting will be over soon. The problem with this comedy movie is as always the obvious problem – its just not funny enough.

I thought that the message of this story was a good one, never give up and Dyslexia is an abnormality of the brain that can be treated and you are not stupid if you have this problem. Perhaps this is another flaw with this story, because Kevin Hart’s learning disabled character has a life affliction that can never be funny.

I remember thinking that this story has some parallels to Kevin Hart in real life because I read his book I Can’t Make This Up: Life Lessons. As I have said in the past within this blog, would any of us be able to go through all that Kevin Hart had to go through to become successful in a field as remote and challenging as stand-up comedy? Kevin Hart in the end was hugely successful after being a shoe salesman and almost a high school drop-out, but how few of us would be able to endure all the years of hardship and disappointment that he had to go through to get where he is today? Kevin Hart was raised by a hard working single mother, his father was a drug addict who was frequently in prison. He struggled for many years making almost no money trying to break into stand-comedy. In 2016 Hart made 87.5 million dollars, making him by far the highest paid stand-up comedian, but the dues he paid to get there are almost unbelievable and what he should be admired the most for.

The Rotten Tomatoes rating for Night School are a very low 30% and for IMDB, the rating is only 5.4. I agree with these ratings and if you are a fan of Kevin Hart, you would be better off renting one of his stand-up comedy movies – and miss this latest unfunny film.