It was inevitable that the full-length debut from Key and Peele would be compared to their sketch show, and be referred to as “a sketch stretched out into a movie.” Remember how the Simpsons movie felt distinctly like a full-length movie, but people still referred to it as “three episodes stuck back to back?” You just can't escape it. It wouldn't matter if their first film had been 12 Years A Slave, people would have still stuck K&P gifs into their recaps.*
You gonna kidnap Chiwetel Ejiofor** and make him a slave and think he's not gonna find a way to escape? YOU DONE MESSED UP, A-ARON!
**I can now spell Chiwetel Ejiofor without looking it up, which I think is a testament to how good Ejiofor has been in everything he's done that this is now the case.
The thing is, Keanu is not really a sketch stretched out to movie length. It's just a movie built on a fairly slight premise – a gang kidnaps a small cat that Jordan Peele's character has adopted when they break into his house, and Key and Peele try and pose as gangbangers in an attempt to get the cat back. It's basically a Wayans brothers movie with a much more ridiculous MacGuffin.
Unsurprisingly, the movie itself doesn't totally work, but it wanders into a lot of interesting, funny places – the subplot of Key slowly selling gang members on the appeal of George Michael's music is great, and cameos by Will Forte as a forgetful drug dealer and Anna Faris as a coked out version of herself both get huge laughs – so that even though it never hits any particularly glorious heights, it's still a pleasant ride the whole way through.