Earl Montgomery (Martin Lawrence) is a cocky L.A.P.D. cadet who would probably be a great cop if it weren't for his rebellious behavior. When his attitude gets him kicked out of the police academy, he can only find employment as a lowly security … see full wiki
The Bottom Line: Don't waste your money. You will be VERY disappointed in Martin Lawrence after this film, should you not listen to me and watch it.
My husband and I enjoy watching movies. Let me correct that: My husband and I enjoy watching movies at home. It seems as though every weekend, we go to Blockbuster and rent a few movies.
Two weeks ago, we rented Bringing Down The House, Solaris, and National Security. Unfortunately, I was disappointed with all of these movies. However, I was most disappointed with National Security.
I am usually a Martin Lawrence fan. I loved Big Momma's House, Bad Boys and Blue Streak. National Security, however, was absolutely horrible- in my humble opinion.
THE PLOT Hank Rafferty (Steve Zahn of Riding in Cars With Boys and Joy Ride), is a Los Angeles cop that watches his partner get killed. Immediately following the funeral, Hank returns to his patrol without a partner. During a routine patrol of Echo Park, he sees a black man trying to get into a car. This is Earl Montgomery (Lawrence), a wanna-be cop who believe that "The Man" is holding him back in every situation. After a strange (and silly) incident during this routine traffic stop, Earl accuses Hank of police brutality. Of course, it is all caught on video tape and supports Earl's claim. Hank ends up in prison.
Even after he loses his job with the LAPD, Hank is still determined to find his partner's killer. He follows all of the leads he possibly can. Once again, he runs into Earl. The two are involved in this major gun fight, and end up in Lt. Washington's (Bill Duke of Red Dragon and Exit Wounds) office. Even though they are warned to stay away from the case and each other, Earl and Hank team up to find the killer.
Of course, they bust the case wide open. Hank is reinstated and Earl becomes a cop. Hank gets his life back, after losing it because of Earl's stupidity, and everyone lives happily ever after.
And, yes, this is supposed to take place in LA.
THE SCRIPT I can't believe how many "reverse-racism" jokes riddled this script. It was offensive even to me, and I'm probably the most politically-incorrect person I know. Earl is a stereotypical black dude from "da hood" who wants to become a cop. He is totally ignorant and quick to blame everything on white people.
Hank, on the other hand, seems like a regular guy who happens to have a little bit of a rage problem he needs to deal with. And who can blame him with Earl getting on the African American soapbox in every scene? Good grief! There was a scene when Hank finally punched Earl, and I said, "It's about time!"
Lawrence can usually deliver a poor joke so that it is funny, but that was not this case in this film. And, Zahn just wasn't good enough as the "straight man." It wasn't his fault-- The script was just awful. Completely uncreative and relied heavily on stereotypes. You'd think that these seasoned actors would know how to choose a script!
THE CHARACTERS As I've stated before, Earl Montgomery is an ignorant, stereotypical bigot who happens to be African American. Believe me, he doesn't let you forget it. He's obnoxious and rude, and you can't help but dislike him. Even Martin Lawrence couldn't bring humor to this role.
Hank Rafferty is a bland, quiet patrol cop. He's not the stereotypical LA cop at all throughout this movie, which surprised me. Zahn plays the low-key character well enough that you feel sorry for him at times, and really do take his side in whatever conflicts arise between him and Montgomery.
The other characters leave little to no impression on the viewing audience. That's a good thing, I suppose, since you can't really remember who was in this God-awful film.
THE STUNTS The trailers for National Security were a real tease. They showed all of the "good" stunts, and in a way that the film actually looked good. Folks, what you saw in the trailer is what you get with the film. Nothing more.
The stunts get downright silly: a shootout in a beverage warehouse, a car driving off a bridge onto a garbage barge, the final action scene taking place in the LA water basin. Man, it is just cliche and has been done BETTER in so many other movies.
IN CONCLUSION Don't bother renting this movie. It probably wouldn't even be funny while under the influence of something Take my advice on this one, people. Move to the next rack in Blockbuster.