Paul Blart: Mall Cop

MPAA Rating: PG

Entertainment: +3

Content: +3

Kevin James, Keir O’Donnell, Raini Rodriguez. Comedy. Written by Kevin James, Nick Bakay. Directed by Steve Carr.

FILM SYNOPSIS: A single, suburban dad tries to make ends meet as a security officer at a New Jersey mall. It's a job he takes very seriously, though no one else does. When Santa's helpers at the mall stage a coup, shutting down the megaplex and taking hostages (Paul's daughter and sweetheart among them), Jersey's most formidable mall cop will have to become a real cop to save the day.

PREVIEW REVIEW: It’s January, folks, don’t expect the studios to be releasing comedies in the class of Ninotchka or Dr. Strangelove. Paul Blart is more like a kickback to Jerry Lewis after Dean Martin. Kevin James plays Blart as a good-hearted bumbler everyone else (except his adoring daughter) considers a loser. As Mr. James establishes this character and his plight, the loser routine becomes a bit embarrassing, the attempts at humor a bit overdone. But here I am expecting subtlety in today’s screen humor. What am I thinking?

But finally, after the bad guys take over the mall, the film’s action kicks in and we find ourselves involved and rooting for the mall cop.

A clean film, Paul Blart: Mall Cop is a nice outing for the family. Both kids and adults will get some laughs. Just don’t expect any nominations next awards season.

Preview Reviewer: Phil Boatwright
Sony Pictures

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Some name-calling by the bad guys and a few fat jokes, but mostly the filmmakers are family-friendly.

Obscene Language: I caught one obscenity (the s-word), not from the lead; a couple of expletives from other characters.

Profanity: Two “oh my Gods” but no other misuse of God’s name.

Violence: Some pratfalls and the lead comes up against thieves at the mall and must outthink them; a couple of fights and some gun shooting; hostages are held; but the action is not overly graphic; that said, parents should be there with little ones in case the need for reassurance arises.

Sex: Paul is a lonely single parent (his wife ran off leaving him and his daughter), the family tries to get him to find a lady with an online dating service; he falls for an employee at the mall; one kiss, no sexual situations.

Nudity: None

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: None

Drugs: Though he doesn’t drink, Paul accidentally gets drunk at a party and behaves like a klutz, and later winds up with a huge tattoo; the film doesn’t promote drinking, but rather shows the negative consequences of overindulgence.

Other: None

Running Time: 91 minutes
Intended Audience: Family

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