Movie Jail: This week’s defendant is…Chris Rock!

Last Updated on August 5, 2021

Movie Jail

This is Movie Jail, a unique maximum security prison that houses some of the worst writers, directors, actors and producers from Hollywood and beyond. Their crimes? The offenses vary from convict to convict but most of these inmates have contributed negatively to the film world to some capacity and his or her misdeeds have covered a long enough period of time that the authorities had to intervene. In each column a defendant is put on trial, arguments are made, and then it is up to YOU, the jury, to decide if the person is guilty or not guilty of crimes against cinema. Their lives are in your hands, dude.

The Defendant

The Case

The Prosecution: Grown Ups 2, What to Expect When You're Expecting, Grown Ups, I Think I Love My Wife, The Longest Yard, Head of State, Bad Company, Down to Earth

Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, many consider Chris Rock to be one of the greatest stand-up comedians of all time, however his films haven't been nearly as impressive as his work as a comedian. The jury might think the prosecution is only going after him because of the Grown Ups movies (although we are pretty sure his Nat X from Saturday Night Live would slap the shit out of him for appearing in the Adam Sandler flicks), but the prosecution is more bothered by the awful films written and directed by Mr. Rock.

The comedian doesn't always pick the best projects to work on as an actor, but this trial shouldn't be about his bit roles in bad films (You Don't Mess with the Zohan) or some of the stuff he appeared in after SNL (Sgt. Bilko, Beverly Hills Ninja). A man's got to eat (or cameo in his friends' movies), right? However even when Mr. Rock does has a bigger part, it's usually in terrible movies like Bad Company and What to Expect When You're Expecting, and it's even worse when the comedian is also working behind the scenes as a director and/or screenwriter. Disappointing is probably the best way to describe his Down to Earth, Head of State and I Think I Love My Wife, but lazy and unfunny work as well. Mr. Rock's screenplays have been bland and uninspiring, especially compared to his brilliant stand-up material.

Based purely on his movies, the prosecution believes Mr. Rock needs to spend some time behind bars for his crimes. The prosecution isn't trying to suggest he's no longer funny or has lost "it" (he was actually quite hilarious at this year's BET Awards) and we're not pushing for a long sentence, but Mr. Rock definitely deserves to go to Movie Jail, at least for a couple of months.

The Defense: 2 Days in New York, Death at a Funeral, Madagascar series, Bee Movie, Good Hair, Osmosis Jones, Nurse Betty, Dogma, Lethal Weapon 4, CB4, New Jack City

Ladies and gentlemen, this case reminds the defense of a Mitch Hedberg joke about comedians, and what they have to deal with in their line of work:

When you’re in Hollywood and you’re a comedian, everybody wants you to do other things besides comedy. They say “All right you’re a stand-up comedian, can you act? Can you write? Write us a script.” They want me to do things that’s related to comedy, but it’s not comedy. That’s not fair. It’s as though if I was a cook, and I worked my ass off to become a good cook, and they said “All right you’re a cook… can you farm?

The point the defense is trying to make is most people identify my client as a comedian, and not an actor. It's not fair to judge him based only his movies since many consider him to be a stand-up comedian, and not a straight up actor, or even a comedic actor. Jim Carrey and Eddie Murphy are both comedic actors since they are now more known for their films than their stand-up, however in the defense's opinion, Mr. Rock is more like a Patton Oswalt or David Cross; stand-up comedians who are very funny, but don't depend on movie roles. Also like many pure comedians, Mr. Rock has done a lot of voice work, and did a great job in animated films like Bee Movie, Osmosis Jones and the Madagascar series.

Not all of my client's films have been winners, but he has done some great work on the big screen, most notably in New Jack City, Nurse Betty and Dogma. While those are older movies, Mr. Rock has also had some recent success as well: the prosecution thought he was fantastic in Good Hair, Julie Delpy's 2 Days in New York and Neil LaBute's Death at a Funeral remake. And although the prosecution probably doesn't think it should count since it's not a movie, the defense really enjoyed Mr. Rock's Everybody Hates Chris.

The prosecution isn't a fan of the movies written and directed by my client, but the defense isn't ready to give up on Mr. Rock, and has high hopes for his upcoming comedy Finally Famous. Maybe Mr. Rock's filmography isn't as great as it should be, but the defense still doesn't think Mr. Rock belongs in Movie Jail.


Should Mr. Rock get a free pass since he is more known for his stand-up than his acting, or do you think he needs to at least get a slap on the wrist for his movie crimes? Does the prosecution have a case against Mr. Rock, or do you believe it's ridiculous he's up for Movie Jail? Is Chris Rock GUILTY or NOT GUILTY?


*The cases for and against a defendant going to Movie Jail by the author are not necessarily his views and opinions but they are some of the beliefs that one would use to effectively make an argument for both sides. Not quite a devil's advocate but you get the point. Anyways, this is all in fun so don't take it too seriously. We have a separate jail for those people called "Troll Tower" and believe me you do NOT want to go there.



Susan Sarandon was found NOT GUILTY of all charges in last week's trial, with most jury members saying although the actress has appeared in some garbage during her career, her good films definitely make up for her bad ones. Many jury members also said it isn't easy being an older actress in Hollywood, but Miss Sarandon has still been able to find solid roles in great films.


GUILTY Adam Sandler, Eddie Murphy, Vince Vaughn, Tim Burton, The Farrelly Brothers, Michael Bay, Jessica Alba, Ice Cube, Gerard Butler, Halle Berry, Marlon Wayans, Julia Roberts, M. Night Shyamalan , Katherine Heigl , Cuba Gooding, Jr., Tyler Perry, Cameron Diaz, Kate Hudson, Ashton Kutcher, Happy Madison Productions, Jennifer Lopez, Bruce Willis, Paul W.S. Anderson, Matthew Broderick, Sarah Jessica Parker, Brett Ratner, Rob Cohen, Renee Zellweger, Shia LaBeouf, Renny Harlin, Diane Keaton, McG, Demi Moore, King Joffrey (Game of Thrones Special), David Spade, Spike Lee, Kevin James, Joel Schumacher, Ehren Kruger

NOT GUILTY Robert De Niro, Val Kilmer, Nic Cage, John Travolta, Oliver Stone, Ben Stiller, Jim Carrey, Wes Craven, Matthew McConaughey, Robert Rodriguez, Kristen Stewart, Roland Emmerich, Kevin Costner, Sandra Bullock, Hilary Swank, Al Pacino, Keanu Reeves, Kevin Smith, Channing Tatum, Jennifer Aniston, Owen Wilson, Anna Faris, Robin Williams, Charlize Theron, Ray Liotta, Jason Statham, Paul Walker, Will Smith, Salma Hayek, Michael Cera, Johnny Depp, Ryan Reynolds, Milla Jovovich, John Singleton, Jon Voight, Jack Black, Brian De Palma, Jerry Bruckheimer, Nicole Kidman, Justin Timberlake, Freddy Krueger (Halloween Special), Johnny Knoxville, Orlando Bloom, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Dan Aykroyd, Sylvester Stallone, Gavin Hood, Jason Lee, Jennifer Garner, Carrie-Anne Moss, Kate Beckinsale, John Cusack, Chris Columbus, Clive Owen, Terrence Howard, Andrew Niccol, Drew Barrymore, Steve Martin, Joel Silver, Michelle Rodriguez, Kiefer Sutherland, Dario Argento, Susan Sarandon


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