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Bon Cop N’est Pas Bon

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Bon Cop, Bad CopBon Cop, Bad Cop

Dir: Eric Canuel

C’est dommage — le premier film Canadien complètement bilingue est seulement comme-çi comme-ça.

The only chance this movie had to be good was if it was able to be a clever satire on Anglo/Francophone relations in Canada without doing it self-consciously, or tongue-in-cheek, since that’s just cheesy; unfortunately, not only is the entire thing self-referential from beginning to end, it even ups the fromage factor at many points throughout with dumb gags and stupid jokes based on boring, facile Canadian stereotypes that simply leave you rolling your eyes.

The story revolves around two cops — Martin Ward (the ubiquitous Colm Feore), who hails from Toronto, and David Bouchard (l’omniprésent Patrick Huard), de Montréal. They are forced onto a murder case together when a body is found draped over the sign at the Ontario/Québec border; that starts them on their quest to locate a serial-killer targeting people who have done some major grievance to Canadian hockey — such as the guy who sold the Québec Fleurs-de-Lys (aka the Nordiques) to Colorado. It wasn’t bad enough that Ward is a ‘typical’ by-the-book, well laundered-and-pressed (read: prissy) Toronto cop, while Bouchard is a ‘typical’ unkempt, messy, smokey, plays-by-his-own-rules (read: hot) French cop, but to have the bad guy be a hockey serial killer is, well, overkill (press fingers to temples and groan now).

Even aside from all these issues, the pacing is constantly being thrown off by awkwardly placed comedic and ‘culture-bridging’ set-pieces — at one point, after just having their car blown up, the duo make a dramatic statement that they only have 24 hours to find their next lead before they have to report a failure to their superiors, but then the very next scene has them at Bouchard’s house casually eating dinner, the only point of which is to generate comedic tension by having Ward flirt with Bouchard’s ex-wife. Another scene has them appearing on a hockey call-in show — hosted by ‘Tom Berry’ (Rick Mercer doing his best Don Cherry impersonation) — which devolves into Bouchard jerseying Berry and Ward beating the crap out of some poor female floor director. It was really pretty sad.

The only portions of the film that are half-decent are when it momentarily forgets it’s a Telefilm Canada English/French co-production and becomes a straight-up buddy-cop movie; where the two leads are humourously arguing about something based on personality instead of cultural background. If the whole thing had managed to maintain that sort of tone it would have been a success — unfortunately, it’s simply another waste of another good opportunity for the Canadian film industry.

That being said, it will almost certainly make back its estimated $8 million budget, which should make everybody involved very happy. 03971semaj


10 Comments leave one →
  1. Monday, August 21, 2006 1:15 pm

    Too bad that you didn’t enjoy it. Was it corny? Yes. Definitely high on the cheese factor. But was it really any worse than any number of American films out there? It was what it was (at least for me): an amusing 2 hours.

  2. Yohan permalink
    Friday, January 5, 2007 9:53 pm

    This movie is one of the best I have seen in a long time and believe me I do watch a lot! I don’t know if you just could not get all the french jokes by reading the subtitles but this movie was funny man!

  3. James17930 permalink
    Monday, January 8, 2007 8:31 pm

    I’m pretty sure I did get all the jokes — which is the problem.

  4. James17930 permalink
    Wednesday, February 14, 2007 11:04 am

    This just won Best Picture at the Genies, showing once again that the Canadian film industry is just retarded.

  5. Wednesday, February 14, 2007 12:52 pm

    Yeah, I haven’t even seen it and I agree with you.

  6. Toebar permalink
    Tuesday, February 20, 2007 2:08 am

    @ graeme… It’s generally best to see a movie before you judge its merit.

    Although there are cheesy bits, they are *intentionally* cheesy.

    Come down off your high horse and chuckle with the rest of us.

  7. Tuesday, February 27, 2007 8:19 am

    Now that I’ve seen this genie awarding-winning film, I like my high horse just the way it is, thank you very much.

    I completely agree with my colleague’s opinion. The jokes, both the English and French ones, weren’t funny, and consisted of 8 year old boy humour – people getting blown to lots of bits, characters with names like ‘Buttman’, and yeah, the hockey serial killer thing was just embarassing.

    I can’t deny there was lots of talent involved – it looked very professional, the acting was mostly solid, and there were moments of genuine quality, but overall, what a sad, sad waste of resources.

  8. James17930 permalink
    Tuesday, February 27, 2007 9:58 am

    You’re my best friend.

  9. Tuesday, February 27, 2007 11:49 am

    Aw shucks.

  10. Monday, July 2, 2007 6:33 pm

    @ gp:

    ‘Buttman’ was just a way of making fun of the NHL’s ‘Bettman’, who as you may know isn’t very well liked this side of the border.

    Sure it was a corny, mediocre movie but jeez, your humour is too grown up for your own good. Or at least you’re acting as though it is. Either way, it’s been a while since I’ve laughed as hard as I did during the early scenes of the film.

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