|Directed by:||Richie Keen|
|Written by:||Van Robichaux|
|Cast:||Ice Cube, Charlie Day, Christina Hendricks, Jillian Bell, Dean Norris, Dennis Haysbert|
Fist Fight follows Charlie Day as a high school teacher named Andy who ends up getting Cube’s fellow teacher Strickland fired, causing Strickland to challenge him to an after school fight. Andy then attempts to find anyway to get out of the fight as one would if they had to fight Ice Cube. The story is is just an excuse for Charlie Day to be the same Charlie Day you’ve seen in other stuff. Even if he’s relatively toned down compared to his other work, he works out okay as a straight man because even if he does the shittiest stuff possible, he comes off as a likable guy. It’s a lot of what I’ve seen before from him and it still worked for me here. Ice Cube plays the same angry black guy role that Ice Cube plays which is fine. It’s just that after so many roles like this, there’s not much else he can do with it. But he does manage to get some laughs when he can. Honestly, I was kind of on his side for a lot of the movie even if he does seem to take certain things too far. It had a lot to do with the fact that I hated the kids in this so much that I was sympathizing with what he had to go through trying to be a teacher dealing with these rowdy kids. I know this is basically a cartoon but they just came off too douchey to really find enjoyable.
This movie overall has a pretty great cast and it was nice seeing who they got to be in this. Dean Norris is the principal and he’s also picking on Andy and it’s part of that whole you have to stand up for yourself message that the movie has going for it. There’s also an LOL Random running gag about him being followed by a mariachi band that got old pretty fast for me. Tracy Morgan as the coach is pretty good even though it’s basically him just being himself although he’s maybe more low key than he’s been in other roles. I did appreciate it since this movie is essentially a cartoon and he’s one of the few characters in the movie that seems to be acting the closest to an actual person. Jillian Bell from Workaholics has a whole backstory about how she does meth and has a thing for some of the students. That’s about the whole joke and it’s barely funny the first time but she’s still funny despite that Christina Hendricks is some teacher with some weird unexplained history that wants Charlie Day killed with a knife for some reason. Honestly, she was such a weird addition to the movie as she has very little relation to the plot but it was nice seeing her in something.
I can’t say that I was howling with laughter but it was amusing enough thanks to a pretty solid cast. Everything else about it is paint by numbers and most of the gags you can see coming a mile away but Charlie Day and Ice Cube are good even if they don’t necessarily elevate the material. Some of the humor worked for me even if this just amounts to just being a bunch of randomness spread out until the actual fight of the movie. For the most part, there are gags that work but I never elicited more than a chuckle. It’s just a lot of the same kind of jokes you see in a lot of these modern R-rated comedies these days. They even manage to fit in a lesson about standing up for yourself that you’ve seen many times before and it’s no surprise how that results in the last act of the movie, which is fine. There’s also a message about inspiring students and the state of the school system that doesn’t mesh well with the rest of the movie. I just want to wanted to laugh, movie. If I want to see something about how messed up schools can be, I would’ve stayed home and watched PBS. Other than that, it’s totally watchable if you like a lot of the people in this movie. It sometimes lagged from here to there due to the bare bones plot is but it does fortunately pick up in the second half. The actual fight itself is the best part of the movie and is worth all the time it takes to get there. It’s as silly as the rest of the movie but it’s well done enough to get you invested as to how it’s shot. Other than that, this is an okay movie that has some hit and miss moments. A lot of the elements are predictable but if you don’t want for much, it's a decent movie to sit through.