Think “Home Alone” on wheels minus the charm and you’ve pretty much pegged this latest Ice Cube comedy, a depressingly routine one-gag comedy about a road trip where two annoying kids try to make life hell for the boyfriend of their single mom. The result is sequences that range from the puerile (needing to pee on an expressway, obnoxious radio channel surfing) to some that are kind of dangerous and make one really question as to whether kids should be seeing this stuff as they’ll probably imitate it and cause a serious accident.
The script and gags are tired as hell. Cube does a decent job in a leading role but this stuff seems beneath him (it makes the “Friday” franchise seem like art), and whilst many of the jokes are purely idiotic, some are just downright gross (the petrol station scene) which is at odds with all the predictable and completely unrealistic moralised ending. Cube spends most of his time playing pissed off or scared, Long plays her role as such a sweet innocent you’re not sure whether you want to admire her or scream at her to get some god damn common sense.
The kids do half-decent jobs, Jay Mohr comes and goes with barely a glance or care, and the less said about Tracy Morgan’s work as a quip-dropping bobble-headed baseball legend doll on the front dashboard the better. The writers and director have no sense of pacing or logic, thus the gags purely come off as Hollywood schill slapstick out of a bad direct-to-video comedy. It’s only 96 minutes but feels much longer. Take a drive somewhere else.