Movie Jail: This week’s defendant is…Kevin Hart!

Last Updated on August 5, 2021

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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

Kevin Hart

The Case

The Prosecution: Get Hard, The Wedding Ringer, Think Like a Man Too, Ride Along, Grudge Match, Superhero Movie, Fool's Gold, Scary Movie 4, Meet Dave, Soul Plane, Scary Movie 3

Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, Kevin Hart first got noticed for his recurring role on Fox's Undeclared, which led to parts in bottom-of-the-barrel movies such as Soul Plane, Meet Dave, Superhero Movie, and Scary Movie 3 and its sequel. Mr. Hart's career didn't really start to take off though until the release of his 2011 stand-up flick Laugh at My Pain, but he's continued to appeared in mostly negatively reviewed films since then, and it doesn't look like that trend is going to change anytime soon.

Several of the actor's more recent movies have done well at the box office, but not so much with critics. Get Hard, The Wedding Ringer, Think Like a Man Too and Ride Along all have sub 30% Rotten Tomatoes scores, while Grudge Match was a financial and critical disappointment. As for his upcoming film projects, Central Intelligence looks promising, however that's mostly due to Dwayne Johnson's involvement, and the prosecution has extremely low hopes for Ride Along 2. The prosecution also personally doesn't think Mr. Hart is that funny as a stand-up comic. He has his moments, but he's certainly not the second coming of Chris Rock like some have suggested.

Mr. Hart's big screen career as a leading man is going to flame out pretty damn fast if he keeps starring in bad films. The prosecution doesn't believe he has earned a maximum prison sentence, but maybe he will be more selective with his movie roles after spending a couple of months behind bars.

Get Hard Kevin Hart Will Ferrell

The Defense: Real Husbands of Hollywood, About Last Night, Let Me Explain, The Five-Year Engagement, Think Like a Man, Laugh at My Pain

Ladies and gentlemen, although my client may not be "the second coming of Chris Rock," he's still a very solid funnyman who, unfortunately, has done more bad movies than good ones. It's true that Mr. Hart needs to appear in more films like About Last Night and The Five-Year Engagement and less like The Wedding Ringer, but he finds a way to squeeze out laughs even when he doesn't have a lot to work with, and he's built a loyal following with his stand-up tours.

We believe one of the reasons why the prosecution is down on Mr. Hart is because he still hasn't found a movie project that best utilizes his talents, and he also hasn't done much outside of the comedy genre. The defense isn't trying to say my client needs to take a purely dramatic role in a "serious" film, but we shouldn't toss him in prison just because he's stuck to comedic work, and he's only been a prominent actor since the early 2010s, so he probably hasn't been offered that many great roles. Besides his big screen credits, Mr. Hart also co-created and stars on the BET series Real Husbands of Hollywood, which has received high marks from most critics.

Maybe Mr. Hart needs to be put on probation, but he definitely doesn't belong in Movie Jail, and the defense is confident that the jury will agree we should give him a few more chances.

About Last Night Kevin Hart Regina Hall


What should we do with Mr. Hart? Are you a fan of the short-statured comedian/actor and his movies, or do you think he needs to be locked up for a bit? Is Kevin Hart 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. Anyway, 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.


Kevin Hart


Idiocracy Luke Wilson

Things weren't looking good for Luke Wilson early on in last week's trail, but in the end he was found NOT GUILTY of all charges. Jury members said although Mr. Wilson is a very hit-or-miss actor, he excels at playing everyman characters, and that he's shown he can be quite good when given the right material. Maybe the jury will change their tune after The Ridiculous 6 is released, but he is a free man for now.


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, Chris Rock, Mark Steven Johnson, Mickey Rourke, Ashley Judd, Uma Thurman, Josh Duhamel, Saw Franchise (Halloween Edition), Zach Braff, Sam Worthington, Melissa McCarthy, The Wachowski Siblings, Kate Bosworth, Garry Marshall, David Goyer, Akiva Goldsman, Avi Arad, Damon Lindelof, Hayden Christensen, Dennis Dugan, Sharon Stone, Jessica Biel, Nick Swardson, Simon Kinberg, Alex & Stephen Kendrick, Eli Roth, Paranormal Activity Franchise (Halloween Edition)

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 Edition), 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, Dennis Quaid, Rob Reiner, Gwyneth Paltrow, Mel Gibson, Pierce Brosnan, Roberto Orci & Alex Kurtzman, Ivan Reitman, Stephen Sommers, Shawn Levy, Jai Courtney, Ridley Scott, Peter Jackson, Jamie Foxx, Luc Besson, Jason Reitman, Mila Kunis, Jennifer Connelly, Sienna Miller, Ben Barnes, Simon West, Len Wiseman, Brendan Fraser, Megan Fox, Neal McDonough, Cameron Crowe, Katie Holmes, Elijah Wood, Tarsem Singh, Reese Witherspoon, Burt Reynolds, Ed Helms, Sean Astin, Michael Polish, Kelsey Grammer, Queen Latifah, Mark Wahlberg, Vin Diesel, Barry Levinson, Aaron Eckhart, Luke Wilson

UPDATES: Robert De Niro, Nicolas Cage and Roland Emmerich, Jim Carrey, Robert Rodriguez and Gerard Butler, Jessica Alba, Julia Roberts and The Farrelly Brothers, Ben Stiller, Tim Burton and Shia LaBeouf, Johnny Depp, Kevin Smith & Chris Rock, Ice Cube, Owen Wilson & Vince Vaughn


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