Movie Review: Here Comes the Boom is a run of the mill inspirational, underdog story
Here Comes the Boom is the story of schoolteacher Scott Voss (Kevin James) as he tries to save the music program of his struggling high school. When teaching night classes won't yield him enough of the $48,000 he needs to try and save the program, he turns to an unlikely source. After learning that simply losing a UFC match earns you $10,000, Voss starts training MMA with Niko (Bas Rutten) one of his night class students, and the plot picks up from there.
As a big Kevin James fan in King of Queens, I’ve been disappointed in most of his prior movies (Zookeeper and Paul Blart: Mall Cop come to mind instantly.) This movie, however, goes back to his roots and delivers a performance he can be proud of. While this isn’t a comedy that will make you cry with laughter, there are a lot of funny parts scattered throughout the film. However the movie also knows when to be serious, and makes sure to keep the audience aware of Voss' intentions of saving the schools music program. Also present is Bella Flores (Salma Hayek,) who serves as James’ love interest in the movie. He tries to impress her throughout the film which serves as a good arch throughout.
The fighting scenes were done well as different camera angles showed all the action. In the last fight, some of the scenes were shot from Kevin James’ perspective, which looked incredible. The sense of MMA authenticity was certainly there, thanks to Bas Rutten being a professional MMA fighter himself, and made both the training and fight scenes certainly more believable. Rutten's character Niko actually turned out to be my favorite character in the film, as his awesome dances and different sense of humor shines. He is the perfect complement to Kevin James and the on-screen chemistry is felt throughout.
I was surprised at how inspirational Here Comes the Boom was, as it displays a true underdog, fighting (literally) for what he believes in. Not only does he genuinely care about saving the music program, he starts being a better teacher as a result of his hardcore training. You’ll notice the huge difference from his teaching by the end of the movie.
Overall, Here Comes the Boom is not a movie for fans of strictly comedy. There are a lot of inspirational messages and touching moments found throughout that make the movie well rounded. While there were some laughs, a lot of the funny parts were already ruined in the trailers, which happens to be a case with a lot of comedies these days. Needless to say they weren’t as funny the 10th time around (attempting to dunk the basketball off the trampoline and missing.) Here Comes the Boom is definitely worth seeing whether you’re a fan of action and comedy mixed together or a fan of a little more drama in your comedy films.