New Line Cinema’s “The Man” is classified as an action-comedy, though it seems to lack both characteristics. The premise unfolds as federal agent Derrick Vann (Samuel L. Jackson) is investigating the murder of his partner. Meanwhile, Andy Fiddler (Eugene Levy) is in town to speak at a dental suppliers convention. Their paths unite through an occurrence of mistaken identity as Andy gets caught at the wrong place at the wrong time, and becomes involved in Agent Vann’s case.
Directed by Les Mayfield, the film places polar-opposite actors Jackson and Levy together as a crime-fighting duo – Jackson as a badass black cop, and Levy as an awkward, middle-aged white man. It’s classic Jackson, as seen in “S.W.A.T.,” “Changing Lanes,” “Shaft” and “The Negotiator.” As for Levy, everyone is familiar with his deadpan comedy in “American Pie” and many of Christopher Guest’s films. Together, these two actors play their roles perfectly, but fail to cause more than a few cheap laughs from the audience with scenes involving references to bed-wetting, nuns and fart jokes; these receives the biggest laughs.
If you happen to love cheap humor, then you might enjoy “The Man.” If not, save your time and your money – you’re better off studying.
The Man is playing in theaters nationwide.