Movies You Aught Not Watch: National Security
Movies You Aught Not Watch is Nick Rogers’ weekly, alphabetical look back at the 52 worst films of 2000-2009.
Were rampant misogyny and coarse racial intolerance meant to be laugh riots, 2003’s “National Security” would have been the blockbuster to end all blockbusters — the “Avatar” of asininity.
Yet another wretched excuse for a film from director Dennis Dugan, this “comedy” turned aggressively unpleasant and squirm-worthy.
Cringe comedy saw a welcome Zeroes renaissance on TV with “Curb Your Enthuasiasm” and both iterations of “The Office,” but there were on-point social ills and conventions in those, as well as a touch of heart.
“Security’s” ineptitude lied not with using race commentary to spark comedic fire, but a shtick so full of hatred from star Martin Lawrence that no ethnicity went unscathed, even blacks.
All of this is wrapped in a formulaic buddy-cop package, with a pair of security guards — L.A.P.D. reject Earl Montgomery (Lawrence) and former cop Hank Rafferty (Steve Zahn) — teaming to take down evil precious-metals smugglers.
Not even good action could temper this film’s repugnance, but “Security” lacks even that. Every gun battle is the prototypical slow-motion two-gun John Woo shootout, and every car chase ends with a car rocketing off what must be some sort of hidden jump ramp.
Otherwise, it’s all loud-mouthed ugliness spewing forth from Lawrence’s mouth. “National Security” reaches a true low when Earl, in a position to help Hank with a failed relationship, realizes Hank’s girlfriend is black and changes his mind.
Lawrence’s littered The Zeroes with turds — “Black Knight,” “Rebound” and two “Big Momma’s House” films — but this was the steamiest and smelliest.