Following the success of their Comedy Central series, it looks like Key & Peele are moving on to take on the big screen.
In a world where the streets are ruled with an iron fist by gangs of criminals, its up to two unlikely heroes to save the day. Or the cat. Or save the day by saving the cat. Well really, just saving one of them from suffering from a bad breakup by getting him his cat back. So I guess its not really as big as saving the day. I’m getting off track, lets start again. After Rell’s (Jordan Peele) girlfriend dumps him, he adopts a stray kitten that he names Keanu. Keanu quickly becomes the only meaning in Rell’s life, but when an evil drug kingpin kidnaps Keanu, Rell will stop at nothing to get him back. This includes dragging his cousin, Clarence, along with him as they impersonate a couple of psycho-killers to infiltrate the gang that has their cat. But as they get deeper and deeper and the stakes get higher and higher, these two nerds are going to have to figure out a way to man up to save the day and get out alive.
While director Peter Atencio along with Key and Peele deliver relatively consistent laughs throughout the film, the plot just doesn’t have enough meat on its bones to sustain its run time of only an hour and forty minutes. While it never comes to a complete stop, there are a couple segments in the middle that just feel so disjointed when compared to the rest of the film and run for far too long. One scene in particular has a “big celebrity cameo” reveal that falls flatter than Wile E. Coyote off a cliffside and it nearly brings the whole thing to a screeching halt.
With it’s disjointed plot but passable laugh to joke ratio, “Keanu” feels like it was made for a rental movie night. You know the kind where you grabbed that movie that you never got around to seeing off the shelf at Blockbuster Video on a Friday night. Go home and pop some popcorn and settle down to watch it, only to either fall asleep or get distracted halfway through so you never finish it before you have to return it on Sunday. Then you see it on TV a year later and finally catch the last half even though its edited for language and has commercials playing during it. Yeah, it’s that kind of movie.
I also saw this film and largely agree. It felt like a stretched out skit from their show. I enjoyed my time with it, but not something I’d buy or rewatch unless it was on already playing on TV. If you enjoy the K&P humor, this is a good movie for you. If you like kittens, this is an ok to good movie for you. I liken this film’s quality to a the late 90’s films based on SNL properties like Wayne’s World or (Mary Katherine Gallagher) Superstar. Not as good as some of them, but worth some laughs and not the worst either.