Picks and Pans Review: Cop and a Half

updated 04/19/1993 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 04/19/1993 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Burt Reynolds, Norman D. Golden II, Ray Sharkey, Ruby Dee

When sweet oversteps its bounds, as it does in nearly every scene in Cop and a Half', it becomes cloying. And what we have, in this formulaic movie about a smart-mouth 8-year-old who persuades the cops to let him carry around a badge and handcuffs in exchange for information about a crime he witnessed, is about 87 minutes of cloying.

The kid, played by newcomer Golden, is teamed up with a gruff, aging detective, played by Reynolds. That these two will end up developing a father-son bond is a foregone conclusion.

Golden mugs big-time and delivers his lines with annoyingly smug precocity. Reynolds, making an uninspired return to feature films, yells a lot and grunts. As, respectively, Golden's grandmother and Reynolds's boss, Dee and Holland Taylor give better performances than the movie deserves; Sharkey, playing the head villain, seems to be auditioning for a dimwit-crook role in Home Alone HI. (PG)

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