Whether you find him funny or not, Kevin James has been racking up the hits since focusing on movies. While not all were hit with the critics, he has managed to garner a following. The trailer for his latest Here Comes The Boom looked like a mix of the same old fair that he normally delivers, but does it have any chance of working to deliver a funny comedy or will it end up being just another forced goofy addition to his resume.
Here Comes The Boom follows a biology teacher who is determine to save the music program from being cut in their school by becoming a mixed-martial arts fighter. While the premise is a bit out there and some of the scenarios are a bit far-fetched this movie works surprisingly well. There are plenty of laughs here that work on numerous levels, but depending on how big a fan of James you are will determine how funny they are. The real surprise here was the fact that there was so much more here than just a stupid comedy. The story is a typical underdog tale with comedy, but enough heart to keep you rooting for James throughout the whole film. Gone is the usual over the top bumbling funny fat guy, in its place was a cooler everyman that works perfectly for this story. James steps up to really deliver more than he has to date. He shows not only a good range with some different emotions, but is pretty impressive with his ability to carry the fight scenes. It was nice to see that while this was a comedy, they still took the fighting side of it seriously to deliver something not only believable but entertaining and will suck you right into the action. The rest of the cast do a great job of bringing everything together, with the real highlights being Henry Winkler who is a spitting image of the band teacher in the Simpsons and former MMA legend Bas Rutten. Both of these guys never take themselves seriously and deliver some funny memorable and likable characters.
This movie was a real surprise on almost every level. It delivers an almost Rocky like underdog tale with some over the top funny moments to create something completely unexpected. Kevin James really knocked it out of the park here and hope he sticks to these kinds of roles and continues to stretch his acting range.