Cop & 1/2
Cop And 1/2, or Cop And A Half, is a 1993 family-comedy film starring the late Burt Reynolds, the late Ruby Dee and Norman Golden II. The film was written by Arne Olsen and directed by Happy Days co-star Henry Winkler.
The film was followed by a sequel in 2017 titled Cop and a Half: New Recruit.
Devon Butler (Norman Golden II), a smart, eight year old kid who's obsessed with becoming a police officer witnesses a murder and perseverates to become a police officer, however Detective Nick McKenna (Burt Reynolds) doesn't approve of the idea of a kid working with an experienced law enforcement officer. Nick's commanding officer, Captain Rubio (Holland Taylor) tells Nick to take Devon with him. Later on, Nick decides that Devon is not that bad and the two stop the bad guys from causing more harm.
- Devon is rather young to be with a police officer, but he's super intelligent when it comes to knowledge of law enforcement and is sometimes rather rude and annoying.
- The police officers are portrayed as very incompetent and let a child ride along on a dangerous job.
- Weird acting.
- Annoying cop clichés.
- Minor plot holes that are pretty useful and useless at the same time.
- The villains are laughable and the main villain spends most of his time recording jazz albums.
- When the henchmen come looking for Devon at the playground, each kid stands and says "I'm Devon Butler!", obviously spoofing the famous scene from Spartacus where each man stands and says "I'm Spartacus!".
- Devon is a good kid and doesn't take any nonsense.
- Despite most of the film not being amusing, there are some bits of humor that work.
- Nick McKenna is for the most part quite amusing and is a good police officer.
- The idea of a cop and a kid film is quite interesting instead of the typical "cops and robbers" films.
- The ending is extremely heartwarming.
- Kids or adults who haven't seen this film may have a good chuckle seeing this film.
The film currently holds a 14% "rotten" rating on Rotten Tomatoes, but doesn’t have a consensus yet. Film critic Roger Ebert gave the film a 3 out of 4 stars while Gene Siskel despised it and got into a heated argument with Roger about their differences. Gene would later call it his worst film of 1993 and for years, would mock Ebert for liking it. Gene stated in his written review, "The villains are lame; the stunts are tired, and the dialogue wouldn't work on a network sitcom." and also said "The only thing more unnerving than this picture is my esteemed colleague across the aisle, so wise, so often, is the only major film critic in America who actually recommended "Cop and a Half"." Roger described the film as “a cheerful example of the "wunza" movie, so named because of its popular formula, as in: "Wunza cop and wunza robber," or, in this case, "Wunza cop and wunza 8-year-old kid." Years later, after Ebert convinced Siskel to change his vote on the film "Broken Arrow" to "Thumbs down", Siskel unsuccessfully tried to get Ebert to admit that "Cop and a Half" is a bad movie, causing the two to argue again.
Despite the many negative reviews it received, the film has gotten a cult following for many years.
Cop & 1/2 opened at #1 on its opening weekend with a domestic gross of $6,027,285. It would later make a total domestic gross of $31,889,691. In foreign countries, it made $8,800,000. Overall, the film grossed $40,689,691 against its $4 million budget making it a moderate success at the box office.
Awards and nominations
The film was nominated for one Razzie Award for Worst New Star for Norman D. Golden, II. It managed to win one Award for Burt Reynolds as Worst Actor. For the Stinkers Bad Movie Awards, it was nominated for Worst Picture and two Worst Actor Awards for Burt Reynolds and Norman Golden, II.
- Burt Reynolds stated in an interview that he enjoyed working with Norman on set.
- Norman Golden, II also stated in an interview that he enjoyed working with Burt Reynolds on set.
- Burt Reynolds had said that he mainly did the film to have a movie that his son Quinton could see it with him.
- The film was originally proposed as a sequel to Kindergarten Cop.
- Macaulay Culkin was originally cast as Devon, but dropped out.
- Kurt Russell and James Belushi both turned down the role of Nick.
- Lee Ross was considered for the part of Devon.
- This was the final film to star actor Ray Sharkey before his death in June of 1993.