What's the worst that could happen? Probably being forced to watch What's the Worst That Could Happen?
from start to finish without a pause button: it's more lame than a three-legged dog. The plot is straightforward enough: two men, each as crooked as the other, come into conflict when petty thief Kevin Caffrey (Martin Lawrence) breaks into the apparently unoccupied beach house of wealthy and unscrupulous businessman Max Fairbanks (Danny DeVito). The house turns out not to be empty: Fairbanks calls the cops, claims that Caffrey has stolen his ring and coolly claims it back in front of his uniformed audience. It's a ring that Caffrey values because it has just been given to him by his new girlfriend Amber (Carmen Ejogo). He's so desperate to get it back that he hounds Fairbanks through the rest of the film, breaking into various Fairbanks properties as he goes.
Words like "zany" and "madcap" could be used in the interests of charity, but actually the film falls flat on its face. Lawrence is certainly no Eddie Murphy and the plot would need an injection of major talent to give it a chance. DeVito yet again relies on his stature to provide the laughs. John Leguizamo plays Caffrey's sidekick as best he can but the fake sheikhs-in-tea-towels scene induces more groans than laughs. This is one for diehard fans of the lead actors only.
On the DVD: What's the Worst That Could Happen? comes to DVD with a choice of two spoken languages (English or French) and many subtitle options. There's also a generous selection of outtakes, an alternative ending, a music video ("Music" by Erick Sermon) and the original theatrical trailer. It's just a shame that the film itself isn't better. --Harriet Smith
This unfortunately named misfire of a comedy stars Martin Lawrence as a home-invasion specialist caught and robbed by one of his targets, a corrupt billionaire businessman played by Danny DeVito. Of course, this means war, so to recover his stolen booty Lawrence launches a series of break-ins and crafty acts of sabotage with his motor-mouth partner John Leguizamo. The film turns Donald Westlakes comic heist novel of the same name into a frantically disjointed comedy played for cutesy cynicism. Lawrence mugs his way through high-tech home invasions and elaborate heists as if they were little more than expensive pranks. The one bright spot is William Fichtner, who steals the film as an effeminate police detective who in his jumpsuits and flair pants looks like he stepped out of a hipper-than-hip 1960s European jet-set drama. --Sean Axmaker