Filmmaker Etan Cohen has a history of poking fun and playing on stereotypes. For evidence take a look at the Ben Stiller comedy, Tropic Thunder scripted by Cohen. Stiller famously played an actor known for playing a mentally challenged farmer called Simple Jack opposite Robert Downey Jnr as Five time Academy award winning Aussie actor Kirk Lazarus who decides to surgicaly dye his skin to play a black man for his latest role.
Get Hard is Cohen’s directorial debut and stars Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart two of the biggest names in comedy. The concept behind this strained comedy is that millionaire hedge fund manager James King has been convicted of fraud, and is now facing a 10 year stretch in San Quentin. Desperate to survive life on the inside, he turns to the black car cleaner Darnell Lewis (Hart), to prepare him for life on the inside. The only problem is Darnell has never been to prison, he is infact a chino wearing prospectiing small business owner who happily accepts thirty thousand dollars and attempts to immerse King in the world inside prison.
Throughout the 100 minutes, Ferrell and Hart attempt to find the funny in jokes about anal rape, joining a prison gang, (aryan brotherhood or black colours gang), gender and class in America. Opportunities to satirise stereotypes are ignored in favour of more rape and gay jokes. A scene in a gay cafe where King attempts to suck dick, (yes their is a fast cut to a limp dick), are borderline offensive. Perhaps Get Hard is equal opportunity offensive, from the empty headed materialistic fiancee played to the hilt by Alison Brie, to the Boys in the Hood inspired gang members who end up getting business coaching from King, “the stock market is gangsta.”
Get Hard is a Gary Sanchez production who have previously produced Eastbound & Down, Anchorman and Funny or Die. So going in you know what to expect.