Movie review – Paul Blart: Mall Cop
Kevin James stars as the titular “Paul Blart: Mall Cop,” a PG-rated comedy from Adam Sandler’s Happy Madison production company.
James plays an overweight, hypoglycemic “security officer” who takes his self-imposed oath to protect the mall very seriously. He’s a single father who lives with his mother and daughter, and has failed the state trooper entrance exam eight times. Naturally, the hottest woman in the mall finds him attractive.
Amy (Jayma Mays, “Ugly Betty”) sells hair extensions, and notices Paul when he crashes his Segway into a minivan.
She invites him out with a group of mall employees, where he accidentally gets drunk and makes a fool of himself.
The film looks as if it will be a boy-meets-girl, boy-loses-girl, boy-gets-girl-back romantic comedy. But on Black Friday, the mall is taken over by a gang of robbers. “Mall Cop” then moves into full-on “Die Hard” parody.
The group of robbers, going by Santa’s reindeer code-names, skateboard and parkour and bicycle through the mall. They plan to appropriate the day’s credit card payments. They clear the mall (except for some hostages, including Amy). But they don’t realize Paul Blart is still in the mall.
Steve Carr, the director of “Daddy Day Care,” isn’t able to give the action scenes the sense of excitement and suspense they need. And the editing is at times confusing. Furthermore, the screenplay (co-written by James) also doesn’t make much sense. Trying to figure everybody’s motives and reasoning once the secrets are revealed is largely impossible. But the film does limit the number of times it goes for a cheap laugh, which is appreciated.
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