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Film / Let's Be Cops

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Ryan O'Malley and Justin Miller aren't satisfied with their current situation. Justin is an ignored employee at a video game company, and Ryan is a jobless ex-football player with no real direction in life, mostly living off his royalties from being in an ad for herpes medication. The directionless feeling of their lives is only underscored when they attend their college reunion and mistake a masquerade ball for a costume party, showing up dressed as cops. On their way home, however, they discover that the costumes are real enough that they can fool basically anybody. Even actual cops.

The new found respect the outfit entails is exactly what Ryan has been looking for, and after studying YouTube videos of police procedure and buying a used cop car off eBay, he drags a reluctant Justin along on their new "career" as LAPD officers.


  • Abhorrent Admirer: Annie is this for Justin, who's also taken for. Ryan, on the other hand, basically fell in love with her.
  • All Women Are Lustful: One of the things the guys have to deal with is a Cat Fight because one of the sorority sisters cheated with another sister's boyfriend. Josie pretty much throws herself onto Justin when she got a chance to, prompting him to back off and claim that things escalated too quickly, and let's not even get into Annie.
    Annie: If that little guy wasn't here, some seriously weird stuff would be happening right now.
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  • Ax-Crazy: Kasic is completely out of his tattooed gourd.
  • Bad Boss: Everyone hates Kasic, according to sources.
  • Brick Joke: Justin jokes early in the movie that he'd like to meet the "6'1 Chinese guy" who could fit his "Officer Chang" uniform. As they leave the Mossi bust near the end, they pass by said 6'1 Chinese guy. Also named Chang.
  • Brief Accent Imitation: Ryan unconsciously imitates Pupa's accent.
  • Becoming the Mask: Ryan very quickly starts to believe he's a real cop. In fact, the ending sequence sees him become a cop for real!
  • Buddy Cop Show, except, y'know, they're not really cops.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Justin and Ryan have their revenge on the people who hit the latter's car, but were unaware that they are members of the Albanian mob.
  • Cat Fight: Justin and Ryan attempt to break up one of these. They fail. Miserably.
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  • Dirty Cop: Detective Brolin is Kasic's partner, and the head of the LAPD's organized crime unit.
  • Dragon Ascendant: Mossi caps his boss Brolin, who is the Bigger Bad, when Ryan convinces Mossi that said boss would sell him out for a lighter sentence.
  • Dude, Not Funny!: In-universe. This is the policewoman's reaction when Justin tried to explain to her that he and Ryan were joking when they decided to be cops.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: None of the gangsters in the movie can shoot worth a damn. Neither can Ryan or Justin— though to their credit, they know this, and mostly only shoot to provide covering fire for Seagers to escape.
  • Impersonating an Officer: The basic premise of the entire movie. Justin and Ryan acquire realistic LAPD uniforms from Justin's 'Patrolman LA' video game presentation pitch, and Ryan later buys a used police cruiser, decals and a sergeants patch on eBay.
  • Intoxication Ensues: Justin, after getting "cranked out" (smoking meth) twitches excessively and suggests they build a porch.
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Attempted and failed miserably by Ryan and Justin. Their attempt to waterboard a perp consists of saran-wrapping him to an ironing board and lightly spraying his face with the hose from the kitchen sink.
  • Jerkass:
    • KASIC.
    • Also Todd, Justin's arrogant boss, absolutely refuses to take his video game pitch seriously. In the third act, mobsters attack him in the middle of his game pitch, and, thinking it's part of the pitch, is finally sold on Justin's idea.
  • Karma Houdini: Ryan and Justin appear to suffer little to no consequences for impersonating police officers for weeks. In fact, Seagers helps get them off the hook, though it's justified in that they saved his life and also helped take down a very dangerous criminal
  • Loser Protagonist: Two of them.
  • Megaton Punch: After going to Kasic's party and getting roped into a fight with someone, Justin finds himself on both sides of one. He gets hit, then he hits back. Surprisingly hard.
  • The Mole: Pupa becomes one after he's kidnapped by Ryan and Justin, then liking them and Justin's video game.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Mossi is not unpleasant to look at.
  • Ms. Fanservice:
  • Mood Whiplash: The last half of the movie dispenses with most of the comedy and becomes a more serious cop flick.
  • Ridiculously Average Guy: Again, two of them!
  • Ruthless Foreign Gangsters: Mossi Kasic and his crew are Albanian and scary as hell.
  • Stockholm Syndrome / Lima Syndrome: Pupa is a low-level Mook that Ryan and Justin kidnap to "interrogate". They end up sharing a beer and playing video games with him instead, and he takes enough of a liking to them to tell them everything they need to know. Pupa even sticks around to become Ryan's informant when the latter joins the police force for real!
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: Annie, upon meeting Justin and Ryan. "I'm totally not on ecstasy!"


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