Here Comes the Boom Review
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From TV funny guy to comic leading man, Kevin James has built quite a career on being stocky, acting clueless, and falling down. If you take a physical comedian like James, then, and put him in a movie about a physical sport like mixed martial arts, you might expect a hard-hitting and hilarious comedy. You definitely wouldn’t expect something as dull or as preachy as Here Comes the Boom.

High school biology teacher Scott Voss (James) isn’t the kind of teacher to care about things like teaching biology…or even showing up for class on time. But when he hears that the school is about to cut its music program—leaving music teacher Marty (Henry Winkler) without a job—Scott decides to do something about it.

In order to save the music program, Scott will need to raise $48,000—a whole lot more than he can make helping immigrants prepare for their citizenship test. So when one of his students introduces Scott to the world of mixed martial arts, he decides to give it a try.

Really, it’s hard to say what Here Comes the Boom is supposed to be. If it’s supposed to a comedy, it falls seriously flat. If it’s supposed to be an inspirational drama, it’s certainly a goofy one. And if it’s supposed to be a sports story, it’s a pretty pathetic one.

James may be known as a funny guy, but the comedy of Here Comes the Boom is so half-hearted that it’s almost depressing. The real laughs are few and far between, while the other obvious attempts at comedy earn little more than mercy chuckles. Perhaps the audience is supposed to find it absolutely hilarious that Voss keeps taking a beating—but it’s mostly just sad.

The rest of the film, then, is a mix of short fight scenes and long sermons about the problems with today’s educational system and the importance of extracurricular activities in schools. It’s surprisingly sappy and oddly preachy. And even though James’s character is supposed to be a rousing kind of everyman who takes a stand and makes a change, it’s hard to find him inspiring—especially when you consider that he starts the film as a lazy, apathetic drone, who goes out of his way to slack off. Is that really the kind of guy who’s going to care whether the music teacher loses his job? Probably not—so his sudden transformation into a guy who cares about something other than himself seems completely unnatural.

Granted, Here Comes the Boom has its heart in the right place—and it has a couple of amusing moments, too. For a comedy about no-holds-barred fighting, though, it sure is dull.

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