Coffee & Kareem makes me angry. Not the movie itself, just its title – because that’s one hell of a forced pun, and it’s doubly hilarious because Coffee is white and Kareem is black. What have I done that’s so bad as to warrant this punishment? Pun intended, because if I have to suffer, so do you.
Anyway, it’s Netflix’s upcoming R-rated odd-couple action comedy from director Michael Dowse (Stuber, Goon), and was written Shane Mack (making his feature debut). It stars Ed Helms, Taraji P. Henson, Terrence Little Gardenhigh, Betty Gilpin, RonReaco Lee, Andrew Bachelor, and David Alan Grier.
The official plot synopsis is as follows:
While police officer James Coffee (Ed Helms) enjoys his new relationship with Vanessa Manning (Taraji P. Henson), her beloved 12-year-old son Kareem (Terrence Little Gardenhigh) plots their break-up. Attempting to scare away his mom’s boyfriend for good, Kareem tries to hire criminal fugitives to take him out but accidentally exposes a secret network of criminal activity, making his family its latest target. To protect Vanessa, Kareem teams up with Coffee — the partner he never wanted — for a dangerous chase across Detroit.
Let’s take a look, but before we do here’s the obligatory NSFW warning due to some salty language:
If you’re looking for a comedy with some subtlety or smarts you’ll want to look elsewhere. This is about as subtle as your ex hurling a brick inscribed with “I hate you!!!” at your head while screaming, “I hate you!” She never did tell me why.
To be fair there were a couple of moments that made me chuckle, it looks decently directed, and I appreciate a movie that isn’t afraid to let the language fly, but I suspect we’ve seen all the best moments this movie has to offer. If you’re going to watch this, make sure to switch off your brain so you can just sit back and go with the flow.
Take a moment and imagine Nic Cage as Coffee. What do you think? Yes, that’s what I thought.
Coffee & Kareem is due to premiere on Netflix on 3 April.
Last Updated: March 25, 2020