When a mild-mannered Uber driver named Stu (Kumail Nanjiani) picks up a passenger (Dave Bautista) who turns out to be a cop hot on the trail of a brutal killer, he’s thrust into a harrowing ordeal where he desperately tries to hold onto his wits, his life and his five-star rating.
We are currently in the middle of what is regarded as one of the worst summer movie seasons in recent years and the oversaturation of mediocre sequels, remakes, and spinoffs may be to blame. That said, I cannot tell you enough how refreshing it is to watch a movie like Stuber. I was genuinely surprised by how much I loved this action-comedy more than most of the other “meh” movies I have watched this summer so far, and I am here to tell you that it should certainly be on your radar!
If you are going to make a buddy film, one of the first things I watch out for is how believable and authentic the relationship is between the two main characters. More often than not, these two people often come from different backgrounds or have different personalities and eventually gain a stronger friendship and mutual respect for each other. This is an aspect of Stuber that completely delivers. Dave Bautista stars as Detective Vic, a tough cop who is chasing after a cold-blooded criminal. Kumail Nanjiani, on the other hand, plays the role of Stu the Uber driver who aims to please and will do whatever it takes to keep his 5-star rating. When their paths cross over, that is when the stakes really start to pick up as they embark on the wildest ride of their lives (literally). This unlikely pairing is guaranteed to make you laugh hysterically from beginning to end. It is so easy to see how much Bautista and Nanjiani enjoy working with each other because the chemistry between the two feels so natural. Though their actions and personality clashes can be predictable at times, the energy coming from Bautista and Nanjiani is so contagious that everyone in the auditorium was rolling in the aisles.
While Stuber provides ample moments of laughter and a dynamic duo, how did it do story-wise? Because, if I am being it honest, the screenplay does go extremely by the books and does not offer anything groundbreaking for a buddy-cop movie. This can be problematic if you were expecting any unusual twists or turns because, though there is one “big” plot twist, it is pretty underwhelming. It does open the door slightly to conversations about toxic masculinity and codependency but besides that, it feels like we hit a bump in the road. As much as I want it to, this is why I don’t think the film deserves a 5-star rating as it stands.
Despite that, though, I still came out with a huge smile on my face after watching Stuber. I was counting on this movie to break the trend that has made other summer flicks succumb to either negative reviews or box office woes, and I was not disappointed. If you are looking to watch an entertaining movie this summer that is not necessarily a typical blockbuster, Stuber has my recommendation!
My score: ★★★½/5
Be sure to catch Stuber when it arrives in theaters Friday, July 12.
probably at the movies.