Kevin Smith "Cops Out" In New Film
Kevin Smith's police buddy comedy Cop Out has its share of shoot'em up action, which likely required on-set gun experts and stuntmen, but one expert they forgot to hire was a dialect coach for the language stunts.
Bruce Willis and Tracy Morgan are NYPD detectives on the hunt for a Mexican drug cartel in New York in Cop Out. Mexican actress Ana de la Reguera plays a kidnapped victim of the Mexican drug cartel, delivering all her lines in her native language which gave the character authenticity. However, the drug cartel characters who are supposed to be Mexican speak Spanish with a Nyorican accent.
The film lives up to its name in this aspect. While most viewers will never catch on, the Spanish speaking audience caught the faux-paux and it took them out of the movie experience. The Spanish language press were especially disturbed by director Kevin Smith's own cop out and felt another slap in the face from Hollywood. Kevin Smith should know that feeling after his "too fat to fly" scandal.
Studios and filmmakers spend millions of dollars on special effects, stunts, and continuity research, but when it comes to non-Anglo characters they end up with stereotypes and incorrect dialects. I guess we shouldn't be surprised from an industry that turns to British accents for many period films that have nothing to do with England.
There have been countless offenses in filming, not just on the big screen, but on television shows for years. ER constantly made the mistake of casting actors who obviously struggled with the Spanish language, delivering their lines with major 'gring'o accents. It made for a good laugh once or twice, but seeing it happen over and grows tiresome.
Tony Scott's Man On Fire is an example of getting it right. Denzel Washington speaks Spanish for a good portion of the film, and it's obvious he worked with a language coach to get the American in Mexico lingo accent down. It was quite impressive. Tony Scott also didn't play up the usual stereotypes of Mexico. Instead he captured an accurate portrayal of Mexico City culture similar to "Amores Perros," therefore staying away from the tacos and mariachi version.Continued on the next page