Head of State

Bomb Rating: 

Rock's directorial debut, "Head of State" posits that it would be funny if Rock ran for president. It's not.

Bernie Mac had the gall to go on "Oprah" last week and call Chris Rock the most talented comedian in America. More talented than who? Carrot Top? And since when did Oprah decide to turn her talk show into a bloated infomercial? It seems that whenever superstars have a product to hawk, they're suddenly on "Oprah" talking about their spirit. Congratulations to Bernie Mac and Chris Rock: You've officially sold out.

Rock's directorial debut, "Head of State" posits that it would be funny if Rock ran for president. It's not. This movie undermines every potentially funny moment by making it so preposterous the audience doesn't have to think too hard. It's not like Hollywood and politics mix well anyway: What other community boos a peace activist off the stage while giving a standing ovation to a child molester, all in the same night?

Washington, D.C., alderman Mays Gilliam (Rock) is single and sports a goatee. As everyone knows, America has never elected a president with a goatee, and there's only been one unmarried president in modern history: Bill Clinton. Combine these two characteristics, and nobody would believe for a second that Rock could be a viable candidate.

As director, Rock's mise en scène consists mainly of a two-shot that looks emptier than the inside of Donald Rumsfeld's heart. Had Rock wanted the audience to identify with this film in any meaningful way, he might have done a little research into how people are actually nominated for president. Apparently, Rock believes one falls into the job like one falls into a stupor. Ultimately, "Head of State" is just a poor excuse for Rock to perform bits of stand-up, bits that were never good enough to make it into his act in the first place.

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