Review: “Reno 911! Miami”

Essentially a “Police Academy 5” remake with even less plot and interesting characters, ‘Miami’ will obviously please fans of the “Reno 911!” show but newcomers will have to make do with the occasional fun, if obvious puerile laugh. Short of the new setting and slightly raunchier tone there is little to differentiate this from the TV show – right down to the shaky handicams, cheap production values and skit nature of the film.

A half-hour comedy show formula is different from a near 90-minute movie, a fact many TV comedy to film endeavours forget in translation and ‘Miami’ is no different. Setting up the thinest of premises early on that a bioscare has left these guys as the only cops in the Miami area, the film is essentially a loose collection of skits of different members of the team up to wacky patrolling or night time endeavours.

The only vague subplot involves a drug lord (a tanned Paul Rudd doing a Scarface impersonation) but otherwise it’s essentially three weaker episodes of the show strung together – a shame considering the Miami locale lends itself to some great ideas for lunacy, ideas that are rarely explored except for the odd gag. All that’s left is the standard jokes about these cops being their usual inept, narcissistic selves.

Then it comes purely down to a matter of laughs and if there are enough to sustain it – sadly no. Sure some moments are giggle worthy – the exploding whale on a topless beach, the golf cart high speed chase, the occasional lack of unabashed sex and drug humour on display, but otherwise it’s pretty requisite one-note gags involving either incompetence or bodily humour.

The cast are all old pros at their characters, Lennon’s Lt. Jim Dangle in particular a fun creation, which makes the moments of dead air easier to swallow. As does the celebrity cameos which range from fun (Rudd, Michael Ian Black, Paul Reubens) to just plain silly (The Rock, Danny DeVito). Ultimately though there’s simply not enough to separate this from weaker episodes of the show, so it’s not worth bothering with except for those hardcore fans.