My son convinced me to watch "The Other Guys," and I had to admit it was a lot of fun. Here's the logline: Two desk cops get their chance to step up to the big leagues, but do they have what it takes to go toe-to-toe with the city's top criminals?
"The Other Guys" reinforced a valuable storytelling lesson: keep 'em guessing. This movie was like one long opposite day. Here's what I mean:
- The tough, hunky NYPD cop (Mark Wahlberg) is drowning in insecurities. He plays the harp and dances ballet. Oh, and he's hated by all of New York because he accidentally shot Derek Jeter in the leg.
- The goofy, awkward police accountant (Will Ferrell) is married to jaw-dropping, out-of-his-league Eva Mendes. And he's the one with an exciting, dark past.
- A Toyota Prius, which is mocked early in the movie, becomes the kick-butt car that muscles through a chase scene with killers (while saving gas at the same time).
- The mellow "Monday, Monday," by The Mamas & the Papas, is background music throughout the fast-paced chase scene. A fun contrast.
- The nerdy captain quotes TLC lyrics without realizing it (or does he?)
- It wasn't high-powered rifles that brought down the bad guy's helicopter. Nope. It was golf balls.
- I expected another "the top brass is in on it" ending, but the writers didn't resort to that tired gag. Another surprise.
This story was packed with hilarious dialogue and fun twists that kept me guessing. Although I don't write comedy, I still learned important lessons about ditching stereotypes and surprising the viewer/reader by weaving in the unexpected.
Have you learned storytelling lessons from a movie? Please share!