CHIPS

★★★

GREAT FUN AND MOTORCYCLES

THEATRICAL REVIEW
By Jess Fenton
5th April 2017

Over the years, Dax Shepard has proven himself to be more than just Ashton Kutcher’s celebrity prank monkey - surprising us all. But it wasn’t until 2012 that he showcased his skills behind the scenes by writing, directing and starring in the romantic action flick ‘Hit and Run’. It was Dax’s passion and encyclopedic knowledge of cars that gave ‘Hit and Run’ its edge and great action sequences, with Shepard performing his own stunts, and the romance just came naturally with his wife Kristen Bell (‘Forgetting Sarah Marshall’) as his co-star. Both of these winning elements have come to play again with Shepard being handed the reigns to give yet another aged TV show the big screen treatment: ‘CHiPS’.

SWITCH: 'CHIPS' TRAILER

Michael Peña ('War On Everyone', 'The Martian') plays an FBI agent who’s cocky and reckless with a slight sex addiction and proclivity for women in yoga pants. He’s assigned a case in LA to track down a group of bandits who’ve stolen millions and left one officer dead. Suspecting that it’s the work of crooked cops, he goes undercover with the California Highway Patrol (CHP) as Francis “Ponch” Poncherello to help solve the case. Unfortunately he’s saddled with clueless CHP rookie John Baker (Shepard) as his partner. Baker may not be the best officer but his keen eye, and an open and sensitive nature- plus his expert knowledge of motorcycles makes him invaluable to the investigation. After a shaky start, the pair become fast friends and confidants in their hunt for the bad guys.

There’s no doubt that Shepard has a great ear for comedy and eye for action, especially if it comes with a motor attached.

There’s no doubt that Shepard has a great ear for comedy and an eye for action, especially if it comes with a motor attached - seriously, I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s tapped to direct ‘Fast and Furious 37’ down the track - but these two elements does not a good movie make. Shepard has assembled a great cast filled with fun cameos and great comedic actors to help him along the way. Dax’s storytelling and editing skills need some work, but he’s definitely displaying some mad skills in other areas and the rest will come with time and experience.

If you’re looking for the fun and success of the ’21 Jump Street’ movie franchise, then we’re just not there yet, but it’s most definitely better than ‘Dark Shadows’ and ‘Bewitched’. First and foremost it’s good fun with a great cast. It may not be up there with ‘Charlie’s Angels’ and ‘The Brady Bunch’ when it comes to all-time greatest TV movie remakes, but it’s not far off.

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