The hit Comedy Central laffer makes its big-screen debut

Reno 911!: Miami

on February 23, 2007 by Chad Greene
“You don't have to thank us,” says Jim Dangle (Thomas Lennon), the sheriff's lieutenant with a penchant for converting his uniform pants into cut-off shorts so he can spring into action “like a law-enforcement cheetah.”

“I know,” replies a Homeland Security official. “You did your job — barely. So what?”

That exchange, which takes place following the climax of the big-screen debut of Comedy Central's Reno 911!, pretty much says it all. This is workaday stuff from the Cops -channeling comedy troupe that traces its origins back to the MTV sketch show The State.

There are laughs here — the deepest due to hilarious cameos courtesy of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Paul Rudd — but the overall levity level seems more in line with a TV movie. I mean, why does the chicken cross the road? No, really. Why?

Anyhow, the plot as scripted by co-stars Robert Ben Garant and Lennon (the writing partners behind Balls of Fury, Let's Go to Prison and Night at the Museum ): Not-so-fresh off a four-day bus trip from Reno to Miami to attend the American Police Convention, Washoe County's finest are informed they aren't actually registered for the event. The deputies are forced to check into a motel so seedy (“the kind of place you'd go for a good old-fashioned rapin'” as Dept. Trudy Wiegel (Kerri Kenney-Silver) describes it) that the desk clerk is convinced they're in town not for a cop convention but a “suck fest,” but this actually turns out to be their saving grace.

When they show up at the convention center the next day, they find out that every other law enforcement official in town in quarantined inside because of a bioterrorism attack — leaving the crew that Dangle affectionately calls “the dumbest group of people I've ever met who aren't legally retarded” to patrol the streets of Miami.

While the result — including a climactic golf-cart chase through a gated retirement community — isn't exactly the most arresting comedy ever, it's nothing to call the cops over, either. Distributor: Fox
Cast: Carlos Alazraqui, Mary Birdsong, Robert Ben Garant, Kerri Kenney-Silver, Thomas Lennon, Wendi McLendon-Covey, Niecy Nash and Cedric Yarbrough
Director: Robert Ben Garant
Screenwriters: Robert Ben Garant & Thomas Lennon & Kerri Kenney-Silver
Producers: Danny DeVito, Stacey Sher, Michael Shamberg and John Landgraf
Genre: Comedy
Rating: R for sexual content, nudity, crude humor, language and drug use
Running time: 80 min.
Release date: February 23, 2007

Tags: Fox Cast: Carlos Alazraqui, Mary Birdsong, Robert Ben Garant, Kerri Kenney-Silver, Thomas Lennon, Wendi McLendon-Covey, Niecy Nash, Cedric Yarbrough, Danny DeVito, Stacey Sher, Michael Shamberg, John Landgraf, Comedy, old-fashioned, law, bioterrorism, golf-cart

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