Movie Review: ‘Playing With Fire’

Review by Monique Thompson

STARRING: John Cena, Keegan-Michael Key, John Leguizamo, Brianna Hildebrand, Judy Greer, Dennis Haysbert, Tyler Mane, Christian Convery, Finley Rose Slater

When straight-laced fire superintendent Jake Carson and his elite team of firefighters come to the rescue of three siblings, they quickly realize that no amount of training could prepare them for their most challenging job yet — babysitting. As their lives, jobs and depot get turned upside down, the three men soon learn that children — much like fires — are wild and unpredictable.

I’ll start by saying, don’t let the extremely low Rotten Tomatoes ranking steer you to believe this film isn’t any good! Quite honestly I am very surprised to see such a low rating. I’ll toss it up to the fact that some are critical about wrestlers becoming actors; lead actors at that. But John Cena is no newbie to acting and surprisingly isn’t doing a bad job at it (he’s been wrestling for years and we all know that’s acting 😃). Playing With Fire is a other film professional wrestler Cena can put under his belt.

Playing With Fire is a very funny film about a group of firefighters…wait correction, SMOKEJUMPERS, (all single without children) who have to face one of their biggest missions yet, babysitting. Jack “Supe” Carson (Cena) is fulfilling his lifelong dream of following in his father’s footsteps and is running things at the same depot his father ran. After rescuing 3 siblings from a burning cabin, he and his team of smokejumpers take the kids back to the depot and quickly find out they’re in over their heads.

The oldest sibling, Brynn (Hildebrand), immediately gives the smokejumpers a run for their money with her smart-elec demeanor and response. Brynn informs them that their parents are away celebrating their anniversary so Supe decides the trio should stay at the depot. The hijinks shall start to commence from that very moment. Supe and his boys Rodrigo (Leguizamo), Mark (Key), and Axe (Mane) , don’t realize what hit them in the form of a a teen, pre-teen, and toddler.

The entire film is filled with many laugh out loud moments courtesy of Key and Leguizamo. This is one of those comedies that the entire family can enjoy, especially the littles. Obviously hijinks are predictable in this type of movie but that’s what makes it.

*Hint: Stay for the blooper reel during the closing credits.

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