Rather surprisingly, there is a good film somewhere within Dax Shepard’s cinematic remake of the 1980’s television series, CHiPs; even if it is buried deep within the foundations. Shepard, the poor man’s Zach Braff, writes and directs what it is, in places, a perfectly functional buddy cop movie. The action sequences are handled well enough, the two leads have some decent chemistry, and there are a few chucklesome laughs along the way.
The issue, however, as is the case with most contemporary “comedies”, is the completely juvenile way in which it deals with sex and its constant leering at women. For what seems like the majority of the film, this feels far more concerned with sex-addiction and breasts than it does crime and motorcycles; the story reaching its lowest point where ‘Ponch’ and Baker discuss an oral sex act for what seems like a good ten-minutes, and which, of course, becomes a recurring “joke” through the rest of the film.
As somebody who is unfamiliar with the source material, I’m in no position to judge whether this is faithful to original show or not, but judging from the older audience I saw this with, who hardly laughed at all, I’d hazard a guess that this isn’t the case. Had more time been spent on building Story and character away from this outdated and immature style of comedy, I get the sense that this would have been perfectly passable. As it stands, the film’s tagline, ‘Chip Happens’, just about sums it up.
Image credit to http://www.impawards.com