Devoted lifeguard Mitch Buchanan butts heads with a brash new recruit. Together, they uncover a local criminal plot that threatens the future of the Bay.
Now, this movie has been getting the cold shoulder right from the first trailer, it just seemed like the marketing for this movie never really seemed like what this movie should’ve been and all the way up to the first reviews coming out, this seemed like it was destined to fail on arrival with a 19% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and many calling it one of the worst movies of the year.
So, I was going into this with a lot of trepidations, now that I’ve seen the movie, I can fortunately tell you that this movie is nowhere near as bad as people are making it out to be. In fact, I would be willing to go as far to say that it is an overall enjoyable movie.
It’s a decent comedy, the cast worked really well, Dwayne Johnson once again proves that his charisma and charm can save the film, he’s so committed to this role and he’s having a ball with this performance, Zac Efron is great playing essentially an even douchier Ryan Lochte and he works really well in this. The ladies in this surprisingly were given a lot more to do here, Alexander Daddario has more than proven her worth as an actress and she does a good job here but people like Kelly Rohrbach as CJ was one of the big surprises here, they actually gave her character more to do in this movie than they ever did in the TV series. Ilfenesh Hadera who plays Stephanie Holden is overall decent in this, Priyanka Chopra is a great over the top villain, she has fun with the role and she does a good job of coming off as threatening by not really showing too much of her evil side.
Even characters that I thought were going to be really annoying, Jon Bass’ Ronnie surprisingly was not as bad as I thought he was going to be, he has a couple of decent moments in the film and he is a generally likeable character. I also liked that the movie actually gave him and CJ a legitimate chemistry and not just having her be friends with her because of his low self-esteem.
I laughed pretty hard a couple of times, and the movie definitely knew that it was stupid for the most part.
Some of the negative things I can say about the movie is that the plot is very much the same plot taken from the Jump Street movies, I mean, there are definitely points where you can easily pinpoint several plot elements taken from the Jump Street films. You would think with how long this movie has been in development, they would’ve taken the time to develop an original satirical script for this but nope, just do what Jump Street did.
As much as I liked many of the characters in this, there were some pointless characters like Hannibal Burress’ character I felt had no real purpose, his character is never fully realized and when he shows up in the film doing something different that before, you keep wondering if somebody had edited out scenes with him in them.
Also, Rob Huebel being the jackass police chief, I swear to god, that role was written for Bill Paxton and when they couldn’t get him and got Huebel, they just said, do what Paxton would’ve done. Not to mention, the cops in this movie were fucking jackasses for no real reason. They just scold the Baywatch because “you’re suppose to watch the beach, not the crime scenes”, there’s no real reasoning behind it, they’re just doing it to be jackasses.
There’s also a noticeable lack of raunchy humor except for showing male penis. I mean, for a movie based on a TV show known for its’ beautiful big boobed women, there’s a noticeable lack of that in this.
But that leads into the biggest insult this movie does to the TV show. Of all the things you’re going to carry over from the TV series….why the hell would you not include the friggin’ theme song?
I mean, really? Out of all the things from the original Baywatch to cut out of this movie, why would you not include the theme song? The theme song is just as iconic as the show itself, maybe even more than the show itself, and this movie just decides not to include it. The movie doesn’t even open with the theme, it would’ve been the perfect place to put the theme song in there but nope, just give us a bland CG heavy opening. I can honestly see why people wouldn’t like this movie because it’s like this movie is afraid to make fun of the iconic stuff about Baywatch itself, the fact that they can’t even include the iconic theme song, how do you omit an important aspect of the show?
Regadless, I did end up enjoying Baywatch. It’s no classic but it certainly beats the hell out of the shitty R rated comedies we’ve gotten recently….and to come this summer. Yeah, neither Girls Trip nor Rough Night looked any good from the previews they showed. If they weren’t afraid to go all out and make fun of every aspect of Baywatch there is, then you might’ve had something here but as it stands, this is a movie that’s okay but nothing spectacular. Wait until it comes on FXX or Comedy Central in a couple of years and then give it a watch.
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