Kevin Hart Gives His Best Performance In Crime Comedy On Max

By TeeJay Small | Updated

These days, straightforward comedy movies are few and far between, with studios recognizing that these films fail to draw major box office numbers like they did in the mid 2000s. While this makes financial sense, it’s still a real shame that these films are no longer thriving, as some of them offer stand-up comedians an excellent platform to flex their acting chops. For Kevin Hart, no example shines brighter than 2015’s Get Hard, which he starred in alongside comedy icon Will Ferrell.

Not Exactly A Critical Darling

Kevin Hart starred in numerous comedies around the time that Get Hard premiered, including outings like Central Intelligence, Ride Along, and The Wedding Ringer. Unfortunately, Hart’s over-saturation within the comedy market quickly caused the comedian to develop a reputation for appearing in low-brow, middle-of-the-road movies. This may help to explain why Get Hard was reviewed so harshly by critics, resulting in the film holding a paltry 28 percent rotten score on the review aggregate site Rotten Tomatoes.

Helmed By Men In Black 3 Screenwriter

The 2015 film was written and directed by Men In Black 3 screenwriter Etan Cohen, in his directorial debut. Unfortunately, after finding major success with Kevin Hart and Will Ferrell on Get Hard, Cohen’s follow-up, Holmes & Watson, bombed spectacularly, derailing the filmmaker’s career for the foreseeable future. Despite the massive misstep, Cohen is listed as the director of an upcoming film titled Mandrake the Magician per IMDb, with Sacha Baron Cohen attached in the leading role.

Hedge Fund Hi-Jinks

A number of talented performers join Kevin Hart and Will Ferrell in the cast of Get Hard, including Alison Brie, Ron Funches, Dan Bakkedahl, rapper Tip ‘T.I.’ Harris, and Young Sheldon‘s Craig T. Nelson. The film centers on a wealthy Caucasian finance broker who is arrested by the FBI after allegedly committing fraud and embezzlement at his firm. Despite his complete certainty that he will be found innocent during his trial, the judge sentences the broker to a 10-year sentence in the highly dangerous San Quentin State Penitentiary.

Learning How To Get Hard

The broker, as portrayed by Ferrell, comes to befriend a black man who owns a local car wash facility as he awaits his impending incarceration. Ferrell’s character in the film is kind and well-meaning, though he exhibits casually racist traits due to his blind belief in stereotypes, leading him to the unfounded conclusion that the car wash owner, played by Hart, has prison experience. Despite having never been to prison in his life, Kevin Hart accepts Ferrell’s offer of $30,000 to teach the soon-to-be-prisoner how to “get hard” to survive in San Quentin.

Not An Award-Winner, But Still Hilarious


As the film progresses, the duo engage in a gauntlet of hardening techniques, including simulated riots, exposure to gang activity, and even a drill on how to escape the advances of an inmate intent on committing assault. The film was certainly never on pace to win any Pulitzer Prizes, but it’s a carefree fun watch, perfect for a group of college-aged students to catch on a weeknight. Kevin Hart’s performance is a major highlight of Get Hard, and serves as one of the funniest of his storied career.

If you’re a Kevin Hart fan, you can stream Get Hard on Max today. Just be sure to have a Wall Street Journal and a forty by your side, so you can relish in the perfect afternoon after your viewing.