What do we know about Chris Rock films? Well, we know that they suck—every single last one of them. Much like fellow African American comedians Eddie Murphy, Richard Pryor, Dave Chappelle, and Martin Lawrence, Rock has struggled with transferring the smallest iota of his hilarious standup comedy to the big screen. Sure, the premises that Rock finds himself in have always been promising (Rock as an angel, Rock as the president), but the results are always horrendous. As his film career stands, Rock is one box office disaster away from donning a fat suit and teaming up with Lawrence for Big Momma's House 3: Big Momma Eats Food, or perhaps with Murphy, for Norbit 2: Big Fat Boogaloo.
Since Rock wrote, directed and stars in I Think I Love My Wife, he has no excuse for making it his least funny movie to date. Rock plays Richard Cooper, a happily married investment banker with a perfect life—except his wife no longer wants to sleep with him. Enter an old friend, Nikki Tru (even her name is sexy! OMG!), whose bountiful cleavage and flirtatious advances threaten Cooper's deteriorating marriage. Will he fuck her? Or stay with his wife? Can he do both? Well, actually, it doesn't really matter, since Rock's once-hilarious take on relationships is now both heavily neutered and just plain uninteresting.
Rock's not helped by his wooden acting skills and cumbersome dialogue, and his predictable, labored jokes are closer to Everybody Loves Raymond then Everybody Hates Chris. Taking comedy to truly David Alan Grier-ian levels, Rock's soulless effort barely earns a chuckle, and the film's lone laugh (yes, there's exactly one—I counted) belongs to Steve Buscemi, as Rock's smarmy coworker who happily cheats on his wife. Throw in a "buying-condoms-sure-can-be-embarrassing!" scene, a "Sure-I'll-put-lotion-on-your-back-oh-no-this-is-reminiscent-of-premature-ejaculation!" gag, a few lame Viagra jokes (are there any other kind?), and some Three's Company-esque gay-confusion shenanigans, and what do you have? The down payment for a fat suit. Congrats, Chris Rock. You've earned it.