Follow TV Tropes

Following

Film / Central Intelligence

Go To

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/might_as_well_just_freakin_delete_this.jpg
"Saving the world takes a little Hart and a big Johnson."
Advertisement:

Central Intelligence is a 2016 Action/Comedy film starring Kevin Hart and Dwayne Johnson. Calvin Joyner (Hart) peaked in high school and is now undergoing marriage problems outside of his job in the office, but his mundane life is turned upside-down when former high school loser Robbie Wierdicht turned buff CIA agent Bob Stone (Johnson), re-emerges and seeks his expert accounting skills to help end a crisis of international concern.

The film also features Danielle Nicolet, Amy Ryan, Aaron Paul, and Jason Bateman. You can view its trailer here.


Advertisement:

Tropes displayed in Central Intelligence:

  • Action Survivor: Calvin.
  • Adorkable: Robbie Weirdicht was this in high school and still geeks out appropriately twenty years later.
  • Ambiguous Disorder: Bob has absolutely no inhibitions in physical interactions with other people or in speech, confesses to having absolutely no friends except for one "best friend" whose only interaction with him was a single moment of public kindness twenty years before, and kills and maims people unhesitatingly while rambling innocently.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: According to Phil, while the money was a good reason to do what he did, he also turned double agent because of Bob's quirky rambling.
  • And Show It to You: Bob tears out Phil's throat after Calvin distracts him with a failed Jet-Flip.
  • Bad "Bad Acting": Phil "panicking" over the bomb in the elevator and telling Bob to get away.
  • Advertisement:
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: In high school, Calvin was one of the only people to show Robbie compassion. Twenty years later, Bob will do anything to help him.
  • Berserk Button: Stone does not like bullies.
  • Big Bad:
    • Pamela Harris, who would go so far as to frame Calvin's wife for treason to get Calvin to rat out Bob's location.
    • The Black Badger, AKA Phil, who wanted to frame Bob Stone out of sheer spite and annoyance.
  • Big Bad Friend:
    • The CIA claims Bob Stone is this for Calvin.
    • Phil, the real Black Badger, is this for Bob Stone.
  • Brick Joke:
    • In the beginning of the film, a then fat Robbie is thrown into the gym butt-naked and laughed at. Near the end of the film, Robbie, now buff and named Bob Stone, strips himself in front of the entire reunion, now cheered by his fellow schoolmates.
    • Calvin tries to recreate his "Golden Jet Flip" early on in the movie, and fails. Fast forward to the confrontation with Phil, the Black Badger, where he tries to Flip behind him, and fails again, leaving the Black Badger confused and unimpressed by the whole thing. Though this does distract the Big Bad long enough for Bob to rip out his throat and kick him off the bridge — like Patrick Swayze in Road House, just as Bob Warned Him he'd do.
    • During his first conversation with Bob, Calvin points out that Bob never gave him back the letter jacket that he gave him to cover his nudity. During the ending scene where Bob picks up Calvin for his first day with the CIA, Bob finally gives it back to him and confesses to having used it as nightwear.
  • Buddy Picture: From Stone's point of view, at least.
  • Bullying a Dragon: The movie shows two cases:
    • A group of thugs in a bar threaten Bob and Calvin over a chair. Bob demolishes them with ease.
    • For some reason, Trevor thinks it's a good idea to pick up his bullying of Robbie right where he left it off in high school, despite Bob now being a towering mountain of muscle. He gets away with it the first time, but not at the reunion.
  • The Cameo: Melissa McCarthy appears at the end as Darla McGuckian, the woman Robbie had a crush on in high school.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Bob Stone is an adorable weirdo who sometimes seems to not understand how other adults act. The movie uses this to bolster the Red Herring claims that he's the villain via being a madman.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Calvin is completely out of his element once things get heavy, but later frees Bob from CIA custody entirely on his own initiative.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Bob versus four toughs in the bar. They didn't stand a chance.
  • Digital Head Swap: Used to put the Rock's face on a fat high school kid (played by body double Sione Kelepi).
  • Enhanced Interrogation Techniques: After Bob is captured, Agent Harris calls for the "extraction tools".
  • Face–Heel Turn: Phil.
  • Fake Defector: Bob Stone.
  • Fingore: Agent Harris bashes Bob's hands, and later we see one of his fingers pointing the wrong way.
  • Formerly Fat: In high school, Bob was a chubby nerd; Robbie "Weird Dick" Wierdicht. As an adult he is The Rock, err... "Bob Stone."
  • Future Loser: Downplayed with Calvin. He was the Big Man on Campus in high school, and is still reasonably successful with a stable accounting job and a loving marriage, but he feels he hasn't gone as far as he wanted to.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: Agent Harris does something unpleasant to Bob to make him talk, but it's below the level of the shot.
    • Averted later, when we see Bob's dislocated finger.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Pamela Harris suddenly stops acting malicious after it's revealed that Phil was the Black Badger all this time. Presumably it was all Just Business to them.
  • Hero Insurance: Bob Stone and Calvin Joyner do a lot of questionable things to stop the bad guy.
  • Ice Queen: Pamela Harris, the strict, no-nonsense CIA agent pursuing Bob.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills: Bob shoots Calvin in the neck, grazing him perfectly enough to leave a convincing splatter of blood, but do him no real harm. He also goes to a lot of trouble shooting at the agents pursuing him and managing to impede them without killing them.
    • Averted with Calvin; he accidentally shoots and grazes an agent's head to get him off of Bob while fighting over the gun with another agent (in fact, Calvin was trying to relinquish the gun to the agent and get out of the fight). Later, he accidentally shoots Bob in the ass with his eyes closed, but Bob thought he did it on purpose to trick Phil into confessing to being the Black Badger.
  • Improbable Weapon User: Bob is a master of this, creating cover for himself by throwing a cartridge of printer ink at his foes and shooting it midair, splashing a cup of hot coffee in a man's face, and knocking another out with a banana.
  • It Works Better with Bullets: During the climax, Calvin shoots Bob in the ass, then pulls the trigger on Phil, only to find the gun is empty. Calvin then throws the gun at him, and he catches it and loads a fresh magazine.
  • Jerk Jock: The group of guys who threw Weirdicht into the assembly naked in the first scene, particularly Trevor. The latter of which gets socked in the face in the climax of the movie.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Jerk: Trevor so much. When Calvin and Bob meet up, Trevor initially seems to apologize to Bob, only to reveal he was joking and continues to mock Bob.
  • Karma Houdini: The Buyer, presumably a dangerous international criminal, gets away during the climax.
  • Laser-Guided Karma:
    • Trevor chastises Weirdicht from the beginning to the end, even after witnessing his insane transformation into towering muscle. At the high school reunion, Stone does not hold back from decking him in the face, knocking him unconscious.
    • Calvin's coworker Steve is extremely perverted and can't stop talking about genitalia; cue him being tasered by Pamela twice in the same scene.
  • Manic Pixie Dream Guy: Bob is this for Calvin with his weird personality quirks and vaguely homoerotic feelings for Calvin. He doesn't (in the strictest terms) serve as a love interest for Calvin, but he comes along at a time in Calvin's life where he is becoming jaded and cynical, and his marriage is starting to fall apart. Bob finally gets Calvin out of his rut with a heavy dose of Silly Rabbit, Cynicism Is for Losers!.
  • Mugging the Monster: The bar bullies when Calvin goes out drinking with Bob, who, when their initial target turns out to have an absolutely massive friend who reacts with calm authority to their threats, keep on escalating.
  • Naked People Are Funny: The first scene has a group of Jerk jocks throwing the then fat Robbie Weirdicht into an assembly where the entire student body sees him naked. Fittingly, the reunion twenty years later features Robbie deliberately shedding his clothes and embracing his naked, now rock hard body.
  • Nice Guy: Stone. Calvin was this in high school and, once he pulls himself together, as an adult.
  • No Name Given: Thomas Kretschmann is simply "The Buyer" even in the credits and on IMDB.
  • Offscreen Teleportation: A specialty of Bob Stone's, constantly startling Calvin and generally Played for Laughs.
  • Only Friend: Bob tells Calvin that he is his only friend. This is particularly sad considering they have not spoken in 20 years and the only interaction they were shown having younger was Calvin helping Bob while everyone else laughed at him.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Played With, one scene has Bob Stone masquerading as a therapist in an attempt to get Calvin and his wife apart, though it's extremely obvious to the audience and Calvin. Calvin's wife, however, completely falls for it even after her husband freaks out from it.
  • Punny Last Name: Robbie Weirdicht, which might explain why Robbie changed his named to "Bob Stone".
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Stone wears a shirt with a unicorn on it, a fanny pack, and loves 80's schlock like Sixteen Candles and Road House.
    Stone: I'll never be like Molly Ringwald!
  • "Rashomon"-Style: Three versions of Phil's death are shown. A tragic one from Stone's point of view, the official CIA version where Stone is the villain who killed him, and the real one where Phil faked his death and visibly hated Stone's quirky behavior.
  • Red Herring: Two for the Black Badger. One is that Bob Stone is insane and made the Badger up, to the point where he commits the Badger's crimes. The other is Pam Harris, which Calvin believes. It's really Stone's assumed-dead partner.
  • Schoolyard Bully All Grown Up: Trevor. When Bob is reunited with him, he at first appears very sorry for what he did in high school, before revealing that he was acting and then starts insulting Bob.
  • Shot in the Ass: Calvin grazes Bob in the butt to make him drop to the ground and leave Phil vulnerable.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Bob is fond of Sixteen Candles and "Road House".
    • Maggie remarks that Calvin sounds "Like Ray Liotta at the end of Goodfellas".
    • The buyer quotes the "Honey Badger Don't Give A F***" YouTube meme to mock how overly melodramatic he thinks the "Black Badger" codename is.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Bob must be CIA Batman for how often he drops in and out of scenes whilst people are talking.
  • Took a Level in Badass: After being humiliated at the beginning of the film, Stone spends the next twenty years grinding levels in badass, and it certainly shows.
  • This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!: Phil drops one of these towards the film's climax, poking fun at a certain other famous role of Aaron Paul's.
  • Unflinching Walk: Subverted. When Stone blows up a car, Joyner hurriedly walks away and flinches when the grenade goes off without actually turning around.
  • Unreliable Narrator: Calvin receives two versions of Phil's death; one is from Bob, who claims the Black Badger lured them into a trap and killed Phil as Bob looked on helplessly; the other is from Pam, who claims Bob betrayed and murdered Phil. One of them must be lying. They're both wrong; Phil faked his death to frame Bob. However, it's still a downplayed case for Bob, as Bob's version has Phil begging him to flee while Phil's version has him acting flippant throughout.

Top

Example of:

/
/

Feedback