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Kindergarten Cop

A lot of past culture is difficult to explain to posterity. Luckily, here at REWIND, we only have to try to explain movies; the degree of difficulty is high, but the stakes are fairly low. For example: why did Arnold Schwarzenegger start doing family comedies? We’re not complaining, we’re just asking the question – he went from doing the movies he was born to do (The Conan movies, Terminator, Predator) that made him the biggest star in the world, to Twins (wherein he plays Danny Devito’s twin brother), Junior (in which he gets pregnant) and Jingle All the Way (somehow even less realistic than those other two) in a snap. Arnold Schwarzenegger owned the entire genre of action movies, so naturally somebody decided he needed to be a comedian and a romantic lead. Then, 10 years later, he was the governor of California. Maybe Arnold is just the single most broadly talented, well-rounded individual ever born. Who knows.

Anyway, in the middle there he starred in Kindergarten Cop, which has a little of both Arnolds in it. It’s a buddy-cop action comedy pretending to be a kid’s movie. But it’s not! It has tons of kid actors, but is definitely not appropriate for children (much like another of director Ivan Reitman’s films, Ghostbusters, which has some very-not-kid-friendly material in it but nevertheless got turned into two Saturday morning cartoons; as a culture we basically had no idea how to do children’s entertainment until the first Shrek movie came out). It’s gently funny, it’s brilliantly composed, and Arnold is in a class by himself. Come enjoy Kindergarten Cop, and then spend the drive home confounded by why it ever got made.

1h 51m / PG-13 / Comedy / 1990
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