“Ride Along 2” (Universal)
By Catholic News Service
In following up on his 2014 comedy, director Tim Story benefits from a script (by Phil Hay and Matt Manfredi) that tones down the original’s relentless vulgarity. An elevated vocabulary fails to carry with it a higher quotient of laughs, however. Nor does the second chapter of this odd-couple story pairing a crusty Atlanta cop (Ice Cube) with the happy-go-lucky wannabe policeman (Kevin Hart) who’s about to marry his sister (Tika Sumpter) feel any more convincing than its predecessor.
The newcomer’s exploits in the last go-round have won him a tryout on the force. But his easily exasperated brother-in-law to be remains unconvinced. So he brings the neophyte along on a trek to Miami, hoping their investigation of a Florida philanthropist (Benjamin Bratt) whose wealth may be based on underworld activities will prove that the novice lacks what it takes.
All but the least demanding viewers would be well advised to skip this trip. Considerable gunplay and other violence, cohabitation, about a half-dozen uses of profanity, frequent crude and crass language.
The Catholic News Service classification is A-III — adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 — parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.