Coffee and Kareem is Simply Awful

This movie was painful to watch and definitely not enjoyable.


Press Release, Netflix.

James Coffee (Ed Helms) and Kareem (Terrence Little Gardenhigh) gave a lackluster performance within the new Netflix film, Coffee and Kareem.

Taylor Dunlap, Staff Writer

Officer James Coffee, played by reputable actor Ed Helms, stars in this film and his goal is to protect the community of Detroit, but in reality, he sucks at his job and manages to mess up every little thing. This clumsy officer is in a relationship with Vanessa Manning and Kareem is her son, played by Terrence Little Gardenhigh. Kareem takes an instant dislike to Coffee and teams up with criminals to remove Officer Coffee from his life. The plot, much like Ed Helms character, is messy and the acting falls short. Everything was overdramatized, and there were more things wrong with the film than right. For a Netflix Original Film, I was more hugely unimpressed.

The film opens when Kareem’s mom lets Coffee pick Kareem up from school. The two of them haven’t had a good relationship thus far– so his mom tries to help by making the two of them spend more time together. James tries to put in the effort, but Kareem’s resistance makes it really hard for them to get close.

Kareem gets driven to a friend’s house by James after school. Little does Coffee know, he had driven Kareem to a local drug dealing spot, where Kareem’s plan of arranging criminals to scare Coffee away would soon ruin Vanessa’s relationship with him. Unfortunately, Kareem walks in on a murder and after hearing gunshots from within the building, Coffee bolts in. Due to his cowardly demeanor, he doesn’t really do anything that a normal cop would be trained to do, but he and Kareem decide to run from a scene. Let me remind you the Coffee is a Police Officer. Plotholes much? Throughout their run from the murder, Coffee tries to win Kareem’s heart over, so that everything will work out with Vanessa. This is only the start of the trouble they got in for the day and to make matters even worse, Vanessa gets involved too. The chase continues for the rest of the movie, and they all become closer through the major inconvenience.

As for the film itself, it really wasn’t any good. Helms directed and played in the movie as one of the main characters and his performance was majorly cringe-worthy. He seems to always play the awkward and mildly annoying characters, as he also did in The Office, as Andy Bernard. Gardenhigh did pretty well, considering his age for such a ‘mature’ movie. However, one thing that surprised me was how much he cursed as a young child, being only 12 at the time of filming. It wasn’t a turn off for me personally, but I know that for other viewers it may be. That’s always something that should be taken into account when writing the script for a movie on a streaming platform due to the easy access to any rating.

It was really hard to follow towards the end, as there were so many unnecessary characters. It was almost like there were two plots or storylines in one movie, which can be done well– but in this particular film, it was all crammed in and unorganized. It honestly appeared as a group project pulled together five minutes before the presentation. All of the actors in it looked like it was their first time acting, none of it was natural or flowed, which was surprising for a Netflix film. It wasn’t convincing and even the way it was edited was overly dramatic. I really can’t find anything that stood out about it that was good, as even the humor in it wasn’t funny or placed correctly. Of course, everyone has a different sense of humor, but personally I didn’t laugh, not even once.

If I had to rate this movie, I’d give it a 1/10. I’d save your time and watch something better, which if you’re already on Netflix, there’s definitely something else to watch.