Hart & Wahlberg have perfect comedic timing

Writer-director John Hamburg’s films (Why Him?) are renowned for using unexpected combinations of friendship and love to produce resonant comedy effect and hidden opportunities for character growth. In his most recent film, Mark Wahlberg learns to accept responsibility for his actions while Kevin Hart develops a sense of spontaneity. Although Hamburg’s screenplay isn’t comparable to his previous work, Hart and Wahlberg will get the most out of the writing by timing their jokes perfectly. In Me Time, nothing terribly exceptional happens, but there are plenty of easy laughs to be had on a quiet Friday night.

Sonny Fisher (Hart), devoted husband and “super dad” to his successful architect wife Maya (Regina Hall) and his two children Ava (Amentii Sledge) and Dashiell (Che Tafari), desperately needs time for himself. Sonny works as a devoted stay-at-home dad, president of the PTA, and director of his children’s school talent show. Sonny finds himself alone and with nothing to do when Maya offers to take the kids for some mother-child quality time during their spring break. Sonny reconnects with his former best friend Huck Dembo after finding himself with no fatherly obligations or responsibilities to keep him busy (Wahlberg). What begins as a reasonably low-key celebration of Huck’s 44th birthday slowly turns into a weekend that puts Sonny’s reputation as a family man in jeopardy.

Through her character Huck, Hamburg attempts to examine adult indecision and the process of considering job opportunities in Me Time. But rather than dive deep into those accessible ideas, it uses Huck, played by Wahlberg, as the catalyst for Sonny’s impending problems. The plot would have benefited from relying more on these concepts, in particular to reflect the contrasting lifestyles of the two protagonists. Huck struggles to let go of his reputation as a party animal and eternal bachelor, which ends up getting him in trouble. Sonny is dull but has his life together. Me Time provides reliable laughs and heartfelt moments when needed, but the execution isn’t always there when it comes to portraying the dynamic between Huck and Sonny.

While Netflix’s newest comedy doesn’t add anything new or intriguing to the comedy genre, viewers can still expect a passable viewing experience that should keep them entertained on a lackluster Friday night. Hamburg’s lessons in self-care and exploration come through loud and clear through the characters of Sonny and Huck, even if it only scratches the surface of vital topics like stay-at-home parenting or sloth-till- adulthood. Me Time isn’t a particularly groundbreaking addition to Netflix’s library, but it offers reliable laughs for anyone looking to escape their own hectic lives.