Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2

The sequel no one wanted

Sometimes you just have to go watch a movie because your significant other says so. With most guys that would mean being dragged to a sappy, saccharine Nicholas Sparks movie. For me, it means going to “Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2.”

Yes, my girlfriend is a huge fan of Kevin James. She’s seen every episode of “The King of Queens” at least three times and has seen all of his films as well. And once she decides she likes someone, she’ll stay totally loyal to them. I remember her telling that me that she was really into Eddie Murphy, and to this day still loves “Norbit.” Yes, “Norbit.”

Kevin James as “Paul Blart” in Columbia Pictures’ comedy Paul Blart: Mall Cop.While I should be grateful that she has a thing for goofy fat guys, I just cannot share her passion for James. I do find him very likable, especially in the movie “Hitch,” but just haven’t enjoyed any films where he was the lead. Some actors just aren’t meant to carry a film. “Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2” doesn’t do anything to change that opinion.

Taking place six years after the original film, the sequel opens very ominously with Blart experiencing both a divorce and a close death within the first minute. I should have known at that point that laughter would be scarce going forward. Blart then gets invited to a security guard convention in Las Vegas and my hopes were up for a quick moment because I love everything about Vegas, but the story might as well have been set anywhere because the movie can’t figure out how to effectively use Sin City as a meaningful backdrop. The audience is basically forced to sit through a 90-minute commercial for the Wynn hotel (Steve Wynn makes an appearance as well), and the film never ventures anywhere else in the city.

blart2Ever listen to a speaker attempt a joke only to be followed by a deathly silence from the audience? That’s the feel of this film in a nutshell. I literally can’t remember anything about the first “Mall Cop” film, but was Blart always this stupid? There is nothing about his character that makes you root for him. He’s pompous, ignorant and just plain obnoxious. James tries extremely hard to throw his body around and make you laugh, but fails miserably every time. Chris Farley made a career (as short as it was) playing similarly out-of-place, surprisingly graceful for their size characters but he was super likable in every role. James is the type of ugly American that no one wants to acknowledge.

“Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2” is unfunny, unoriginal and unwanted. Even my Kevin James loving girlfriend hated the film. I hope that finally means we can stop watching reruns of “The King of Queens.”