By Khaleel Herbert
Teddy Walker (Kevin Hart) thinks education is for the birds and the day of his SAT test, he quits and drops out of high school.
Years later, Teddy has the life he’s always dreamed of: he’s the top salesmen at a barbecue grill store, he has a beautiful fiancé (Megalyn Echikunwoke) who loves and respects him and he’s not living at home with his parents. But when the grill store goes up in flames (literally), Teddy struggles to find employment.
His friend and financial adviser (Ben Schwartz) suggests that Teddy get his GED for a marketing position at a bank. Teddy reluctantly returns to his old high school with his former nemesis as the new principal. But with the help of a strict teacher (Tiffany Haddish), she enrolls him into her night school class.
“Night School” is the lovechild of 1985’s “The Breakfast Club” with Hart’s “Central Intelligence” but without the action and The Rock (which isn’t all bad). Hart brings his classic aggravated side out while Haddish brings some of her wild-child side from last year’s “Girls Trip” and a heavy dose of no-sh** attitude.
The cast includes Romany Malco, known for his work in “The 40-Year-Old Virgin” and “Think Like A Man,” and rapper Fat Joe, who plays a convict attending night school via Skype.
Malcolm D. Lee, the director behind “Welcome Home, Roscoe Jenkins,” “Soul Men,” “The Best Man” and more, knows how to incorporate the funny and seriousness into his films. “Night School” not only makes you laugh, but gives you inspiration. In “Soul Men,” Sam Jackson’s Louis Hinds thinks he’s a washed-up entertainer. But Bernie Mac’s (rest in peace) Floyd Henderson perseveres to get Louis on board so they can make a comeback in music. When they worked together through their hilarious trials and tribulations, they recognized their true potential and had a comeback performance at the Apollo.
Lee’s characters struggle with pain either in real time or in their pasts. But when they recognize their worth, they overcome the pain often in a hilarious way.
“Night School” mixes the comedy stylings of Hart and Haddish into a class of funny all its own that you don’t want to miss. But the scenes with vomit, pubic hair and awkward butt-grabbing were unnecessary. The soundtrack is also on par, playing classics from T.I., and OutKast instead of today’s mumble rappers.
Studio: Universal (1hr. 51 mins)
Cast: Kevin Hart, Tiffany Haddish, Keith David, Megalyn Echikunwoke, Bresha Webb, Rob Riggle, Ben Schwartz, Fat Joe
Director: Malcolm D. Lee
Story: When a high school dropout wants a change in his career path, he must attend night school to get a GED.
Final Score: A-
This review was first published on Blackflix.com