Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Kevin Hart & Ice Cube Buddy Cop Flop That's Arresting Audiences On Netflix

Kevin Hart and Ice Cube brought audiences on the trip of a lifetime with 2014's "Ride Along." While the film failed to impress critics, it seems that the buddy cop comedy has had more staying power with audiences, who helped the feature hit a major milestone on Netflix. 

The film tells the story of fumbling security guard Ben Barber (Kevin Hart) who embarks on a day-long patrol of Atlanta with no-nonsense police officer James Payton (Ice Cube) in order to get James' blessing to marry his sister Angela (Tika Sumpter). Along the way, the two get involved in the hunt for a merciless crime leader (Laurence Fishburne). When initially released, "Ride Along" was panned by critics. Currently, the Tim Story-directed film holds a measly 18% Tomatometer score on Rotten Tomatoes. Reviewers largely commented that, despite the solid performances, the film's mix of mismatched cop movie cliches and weak comedy made it a forgettable venture, to say the least. 

This did little to deter audiences, however. "Ride Along" managed to bring in over $154 million worldwide on a $25 million budget, likely due to the star power of Cube and Hart attracting crowds. And that appeal has yet to wane. Currently, "Ride Along" is Number 2 on Netflix's Top 10 Most Streamed U.S. Movies, only being bested by "Puss in Boots: The Last Wish." Meanwhile, it's performing better than such films as "Bird Box: Barcelona" and "65." It's clear that "Ride Along" struck a chord with audiences, and the film's box office success didn't go unnoticed. 

The duo reunited for a sequel in 2016

"Ride Along" was far from a critical darling, but its numbers at the box office and presently on Netflix prove that there is an audience for such comedies. So it should come as no surprise that Universal brought Kevin Hart and Ice Cube back for the sequel, "Ride Along 2." 

The follow-up sees the crime-fighting duo venture to Miami, where they work with a new team to take down a powerful drug lord. Released in 2016 and bringing on other stars such as Ken Jeong, Benjamin Bratt, and Olivia Munn for the ride, the new installment shares a similar legacy to its predecessor. While not quite as big a box office hit as the first film, it still was deemed a success with a total gross of $124 million on a budget of $40 million. Notably, it became the first film to take the top spot at the box office away from the historic run of "Star Wars: The Force Awakens." 

The sequel's critical response was even harsher, scoring a 14% Tomatometer score on Rotten Tomatoes, with many noting that the sequel repeats the formula of its forerunner. You won't find it sitting alongside the first film on Netflix, however, as "Ride Along 2" is currently only available to rent through platforms such as YouTube, Amazon Prime, Apple TV, and Redbox. A third "Ride Along" entry was announced in 2016 but has yet to move out of development due to Ice Cube and Kevin Hart's conflicting schedules.