Starring: John Cena, Brianna Hildebrand, Judy Greer, Keegan-Michael Key, John Leguizamo, Brianna Hildebrand, Christian Convery, Finley Rose Slater
OUR RATING: ★★½
Comedy directed by Andy Fickman. The story follows straight-laced fire superintendent Jake Carson (John Cena), and his elite team of expert firefighters (Keegan-Michael Key, John Leguizamo and Tyler Mane), who come to the rescue of three siblings, Brynn (Brianna Hildebrand), Zoe (Christian Convery), and Zoey (Finley Rose Slater), in the path of an encroaching wildfire. They quickly realize that no amount of training could prepare them for their most challenging job yet, babysitters. Unable to locate the children’s parents, the firefighters have their lives, jobs and even their fire depot turned upside down and quickly learn that kids , much like fires, are wild and unpredictable.
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Our Favorite Quote:'The people you care about, and that care about you, aren't distractions. They're the thing that keeps you going.' - Commander Richards (Playing with Fire) Click To Tweet
[referring to Jake and his team after one of their rescues]
Woman: You are the bravest man I’ve ever seen. And the hottest.
Jake Carson: Thank you, ma’am. But for us, it’s just another day at the office.
[as Jake and his team are being lifted into their helicopter]
Woman: My husband sells insurance! Take me with you!
Husband: I’m literally standing right here.
[as he’s trying to rescue the kids from the burning house]
Will: Are you really a fireman?
Jake Carson: I’m a smokejumper, which is like a firefighter, but way cooler.
Will: What does a smokejumper do?
Jake Carson: We jump into fires to fight them.
Will: Firemen fight fires.
Jake Carson: Yeah, but there’s over a million firefighters, there’s only three hundred and thirty-six smokejumpers.
Will: A million is more than three hundred.
Jake Carson: In this case, less is more.
[as he’s trying to rescue the kids]
Jake Carson: No! No, we do what I say, and we do it now!
[overhearing on the radio comm]
Rodrigo: Copy that. We’re a go for extraction.
Jake Carson: No. Wait, what? Wait!
[he suddenly gets pulled by his rope line]
Jake Carson: Stop!
[as his rope line is being pulled he smacks into the roof]
Jake Carson: Wait!
Rodrigo: The button, it’s jammed.
[he keep getting smacked into the roof]
Jake Carson: Release! Stop!
[finally falls to the ground]
Will: Ooh. This must be why there are so few smokejumpers.
Jake Carson: What the heck are three eight year-olds doing alone in the middle of nowhere?
Brynn: Eight? I’m not eight.
Mark: Hey! If he says you’re eight, you’re eight.
Will: What kind of firefighter are you?
Jake Carson: I told you. I’m a smokejumper. Which, again, is way better.
Jake Carson: No shenanigans on my watch!
Brynn: Yeah, no monkeyshines, tomfoolery, or hijinks.
Jake Carson: You finished?
Brynn: As long as there’s not a hint of malarkey.
Mark: Woh! Now, if I didn’t know any better, I would say that that was sarcasm. So why don’t we just take it down a notch, sister, okay? Maybe a little gratitude would be helpful. Yeah?
Brynn: Sorry, bud, we just don’t speak oldsey-timesy.
Mark: Oh, my gosh. But she’s not stopping. It’s just, that’s just sarcasm, right? I mean, that’s not just me, right? It’s just sarcasm.
Rodrigo: No, it’s not just you. I just, I felt it now, little miss.
Jake Carson: My name isn’t “bud” or “man” or “dude.” It is Superintendent Jake Carson. But you can call me that. The whole thing. This is Captain Mark Rogers. Lieutenant Rodrigo Torres. And that is Axe.
Zoey: Hi, Axe.
Will: Does he always carry that axe?
Rodrigo: Yeah, because he’s always ready to roll.
[as Brynn leaves her mom voicemail message]
Brynn: We were rescued by these smokejumpers, which I’ve heard are actually way cooler than firemen. Apparently, there’s only three hundred thirty-nine of them in the entire country.
Mark: Three hundred thirty-six. And this, when you do that…
[he mimics that salute that Brynn mockingly gave them]
Mark: That’s not helpful.
[continues her voicemail message]
Brynn: So we couldn’t be in safer hands. I guess you can take your time.
Jake Carson: No! No, no.
[he takes the phone from her]
Jake Carson: Hello, ma’am. Uh, hello, ma’am. Hello, ma’am?
Brynn: It’s still a voicemail.
[Zoey runs towards Jake for a hug]
[Jake spins her around]
Jake Carson: No hugs.
[to Brynn, Will and Zoey]
Jake Carson: I’m legally bound to take care of you, so that’s what I’m going to do. In turn, you’re going to ditch the attitude and be obedient, so we can do our job. Fighting fires.
Brynn: Why does it have to be fighting the fires? Can’t it just be containing it, or resolving it?
Mark: Oh, my gosh! For crying out loud. I can no longer hold my tongue. So what needs to happen right now, like literally, this second, is you got to watch your tone, little sister.
Brynn: Or what?
Mark: Or what? Or what?
[as Jake’s dog is about to attack the children]
Zoey: No! No!
[the dog stops and whimpers]
[the dog sits, whimpers and Zoey pats him on the head]
Zoey: Good doggy.
Jake Carson: What just happened?
Rodrigo: I think the baby broke your dog.
Zoey: [to the dog] Sparkle Pony.
Jake Carson: Her name’s Masher.
Zoey: Sparkle Pony.
Jake Carson: Her name is Masher.
Zoey: Sparkle Pony!
[over the phone]
Commander Richards: I understand you’re Dan Carson’s boy. He was a world-class smokejumper. Died in that blaze in Yosemite, as I recall. No greater honor for a smokejumper than burning to a crisp.
Jake Carson: Would’ve preferred he didn’t die, sir.
Jake Carson: Okay, well, anything in here is outdated and unfit for use.
Will: You mean like your fanny pack?
Jake Carson: This is a FUPA.
Brynn: Did you just say FUPA?
Jake Carson: Fire Utility Pouch Apparatus. Yes. I did.
[as Zoey is shrieking]
Jake Carson: What is going on out here?
Mark: I don’t know! She’s broken!
[referring to Jake not being able to stop Zoey crying]
Brynn: Maybe don’t come at her all aggro next time. “Me fireman. Can’t turn my neck.”
Rodrigo: [laughs] That was a good impression.
[Will runs towards them with flare guns in his hands]
Will: Hey, guys! I found these cool Nerf guns! Reach for the sky, cowboy.
Jake Carson: Those aren’t Nerf guns!
Rodrigo: Put it down! Put it down!
[Will shoots the flares, one at Rodrigo and one at Jake]
[referring to the fire extinguisher powder all over Jake]
Dr. Amy Hicks: I never imagined I’d have to tell a smokejumper this, but you know the correct way to use a fire extinguisher is you point the action end away from you, right?
Jake Carson: Dr. Hicks. What’s your problem?
Dr. Amy Hicks: Why do you think there’s a problem?
Jake Carson: You always blink really fast when you’re angry.
Dr. Amy Hicks: I’m not blinking fast. But there is a problem.
Dr. Amy Hicks: You dive-bombed my lab and scooped up water from Fisher Lake. That is a protected wildlife area. That kind of activity is devastating to the habitat of the Western Spadefoot!
Jake Carson: Forgive me if I’m prioritizing human life over a frog pond.
Dr. Amy Hicks: They’re toads.
Jake Carson: It’s the same thing.
Dr. Amy Hicks: Like firemen and smokejumpers?
Jake Carson: Dr. Hicks, have you ever felt a void in your life that could be filled by one to three small children?
Dr. Amy Hicks: Wait, what?
Jake Carson: I just need your help with a big problem that I have. Them
[points to the kids]
[Jake finds the kids watching a My Little Pony cartoon on TV with Mark, Rodrigo and Aze]
Will: Why is Pinkie Pie so mad at Rainbow Dash?
Rodrigo: She found out that Rainbow Dash was secretly throwing away Pinkie’s pies. It was so shady and unponyish, I don’t even want to go into it.
Mark: How do you know that?
Rodrigo: In San Quentin, they only let you watch three shows. Cooking, history, and kids. So now I’m an expert in all three.
Mark: Well, it all makes sense now.
Jake Carson: You don’t understand. I am stuck with these kids overnight. I was hoping that maybe you would know how to take care of them. Because…
Dr. Amy Hicks: Because I am a woman?
Jake Carson: No. No! No. No! You’re a scientist, who knows how to care for living creatures.
Dr. Amy Hicks: So it’s my scientific opinion you’re looking for.
Jake Carson: Yes!
Dr. Amy Hicks: Well, in my scientific opinion, you’re a terrible liar.
[looks down at Jake’s pants]
Dr. Amy Hicks: Pants on fire.
Dr. Amy Hicks: [to Jake] I have devoted half of my life to my career. I am a well respected field scientist! I am not some pushover that you can get to babysit for you! If you can survive in the epicenter of a raging wildfire for days on end, you can handle a few kids for one night.
[referring to Amy]
Brynn: That your girlfriend?
Jake Carson: No. She’s an angry scientist I thought I could unload you on.
Will: Your Alexa is broken.
Jake Carson: That’s a clock.
Brynn: Don’t you remember what it’s like to be a kid?
Jake Carson: Of course I do. That corner over there is where I did my first one-handed pushup. Learned to fold my dad’s parachute in that bunk right there. Christmas intermittent fasting. Sprints till exhaustion. Speculating on banana futures. I’ve been training here since I was four years-old.
[after Jake admits he’s never cried]
Brynn: You’ve never cried?
Jake Carson: No.
Brynn: And you’re proud of it?
Jake Carson: I get sad. I just don’t show my emotions with water dripping out of my eyes.
[as he’s trying to sing a lullaby for Zoey to sleep]
Jake Carson: There once was a man from Nantucket.
Jake Carson: That’s a limerick. That’s not a lullaby. I’m not going to use that.
[as she’s talking to her toads about Jake]
Dr. Amy Hicks: He’s gross. Unless you’re into sort of a tall, like really fit, muscly, like sculptured face, and clean-cut, kind of somehow-always-has-a-tan, guy-in-uniform kind of thing. Which, I don’t know, I’m not into that kind of thing. I’m just not. I never have been.
Jake Carson: Boom-boom? What’s boom-boom?
[Zoey breaks wind and poops, Jake starts gagging]
Zoey: No more boom-boom.
Jake Carson: [to Brynn] Looks like your sister needs an oil change.
[as he’s about to change Zoey’s diaper]
Jake Carson: You think I’m going to let this rattle me? I put out an entire canyon fire with my bare hands.
Mark: That’s right. Nobody handles poop better than Supe. That sounded a lot better in my head.
[Jake turns up wearing his fireman’s suit and a SCBA mask to change Zoey’s diaper]
Jake Carson: I’m going in.
Mark: Oh, it’s all yours, Supe. I know you were asking for a little space lately, and I think now’s the time I gave it to you.
[as he goes to leave Jake stops him]
Jake Carson: Sweet misery. How is that smell getting through an SCBA? This thing’s designed to keep out nuclear particles!
[as Rodrigo is playing with Will in the fire simulator]
Will: I know you’ve never believed in yourself, but I do! And your team believes in you. And now I need you to believe in yourself! You got this.
Rodrigo: Yeah. Yeah, I got this. I got this. As Lance Armstrong once said, “That’s one small step for man, but you better watch out for the next one.”
Will: It’s Neil Armstrong. And that’s not what he said.
[after knocking over Jake with their motor vehicle]
Will: Supe? Did we kill you?
Zoey: Are you dead, Supe?
[after Jake manages to catch up to Brynn trying to escape with Will and Zoey]
Brynn: Our parents, they’re not coming.
Jake Carson: Why?
Brynn: They died, two years ago.
Jake Carson: Who have I been texting with?
[Brynn holds up her phone to indicate it’s been her texting]
Jake Carson: You know, I lost my parents at a young age too. I was too young to remember my mom. My dad died on the job when I was a kid.
Jake Carson: Brynn, you got to stop running. You should be in school. You should be making friends. Causing a different type of trouble. Trust me, you don’t want to look back on all this and realize you never had a chance to be a kid.
Brynn: Sorry for all the monkey business. That’s what the old guys call it, right?
Jake Carson: [chuckling] Apparently, we do.
[after Jake sets the barbecue on fire and Mark uses an extinguisher to put the fire out]
Rodrigo: “Teach a man to light a fire, and he’s warm for a day. Light a man on fire, he’s warm for life.” Ben Franklin.
Dr. Amy Hicks: I was just dropping off some puzzles for the kids, and I was just very surprised to see you doing something so fun.
Jake Carson: Me?
Dr. Amy Hicks: Yeah.
Jake Carson: I’m Mr. Fun, okay?
Dr. Amy Hicks: Oh.
Jake Carson: Yeah.
Dr. Amy Hicks: I feel like Mr. Fun would go by his first name and not Mister. But I don’t know, you know. I don’t know.
Dr. Amy Hicks: I knew you could handle it. I mean, kids are like fires. You know, you can’t control them, you just have to contain them till they burn themselves out.
Jake Carson: That’s actually right.
Dr. Amy Hicks: I know.
Jake Carson: I didn’t know you knew anything about fire.
Dr. Amy Hicks: Well, someone I went on two point five dates with talks about them a lot. Maybe I listened a little more than I let on.
Jake Carson: And here I thought all you cared about was the Western Spadefoot, because their secretions smell like peanut butter and can cause sneezing. Somebody I went on two point five dates with talks a whole lot about toads. And I listen a little bit more than I let on.
Dr. Amy Hicks: Maybe we don’t hate each other.
Jake Carson: There’s no way that can be true.
[after he lets Amy go without inviting her to join them for dinner]
Jake Carson: What?
Brynn: You’re just going to let her go?
Will: What a whiff.
Jake Carson: Whiff? How did I whiff?
Mark: Well, you were talking to her, and then she left, and it was a bit of a whiff.
Brynn: Open your eyes, dude! She’s spending the weekend alone. In an eco lab.
Jake Carson: No kids. No crying. It sounds like a dream come true.
Rodrigo: J-Dawg, come on, man. That’s mad absurd. People like being around people! “People who need people are the luckiest people in the world.” Barbara Bush.
Mark: So close.
[referring to Amy]
Will: You should invite her back.
Jake Carson: Huh? What, here?
Rodrigo: No, “In the Kingdom of Equestria, where everything is twenty percent cooler.” Rainbow Dash.
Mark: That might be right.
Jake Carson: No. Nope. I told you, attachments, distractions in this line of work? No, it doesn’t go good.
Brynn: Jake, you need to practice letting your guard down.
Jake Carson: I’m not good with any of that stuff.
Brynn: Well, this is my area of expertise.
[after Jake invites Amy to join them for dinner and she brings toad cookies]
Rodrigo: Ooh! Oh! Toad cookies.
Mark: These look toad-ally delicious.
Rodrigo: [tasting the cookie] Do I detect a hint of nutmeggery?
Dr. Amy Hicks: No.
Rodrigo: No? Really? Cimmanom?
Dr. Amy Hicks: Hmm?
[after Jake plays on the piano Glenn Frey’s The Heat Is On]
Brynn: Don’t tell me you only know how to play songs that are fire related.
Jake Carson: No. Yes. I grew up in a fire depot.
[Jake is telling the kids a bedtime story]
Jake Carson: Once upon a time, there was a Yeti. A brave Yeti. He protected all the other Yetis, and he had the most shipshape cave on Yeti Mountain. And one day the Yeti had a kid named Jake. And the Yeti had to take care of the kid all by himself. Now, the Yeti did the best he could to make that cave a home, but sometimes it was hard for the Yeti. But the kid loved it. One day, there was a fire on the mountain. And the Yeti went to go fight the fire, and he got distracted. Never made it back. Maybe the Yeti was thinking of the kid when he took his eye off the ball. The kid felt so guilty that he swore he’d never let anything get in the way of achieving everything the Yeti sacrificed for him. To this day, every time that kid sees fire he can hear the Yeti’s voice.
Will: When you saved us from that fire, could you hear the Yeti?
Jake Carson: You know what, I could. Now get to sleep, or I’m going to give Axe direct orders to eat that cake all by himself.
Brynn: Also, you should ask Amy to stay the night.
Jake Carson: That’s inappropriate.
Brynn: Calm down, Romeo. There’s like seven extra bunks in here. And you can’t just let her drive home in the middle of the night. Besides, it’s Zoey’s birthday tomorrow. We want her to be here.
Dr. Amy Hicks: You’re really lucky to have so many memories in one place. When I was a kid, we moved around a lot, so I would have to find whatever lake or pond or stream was closest, and make all those critters my friends.
Jake Carson: Pretty lucky critters, I’d say.
Dr. Amy Hicks: Whatever.
[trying to find Zoey a birthday present]
Mark: A drone.
[to the girl next to him in the store]
Mark: Do you know if this is a good toy for a three year-old girl?
[the girl shakes her head]
Mark: Are you sure she doesn’t want a drone? Is there any world at all where a three year-old girl would want a drone?
[the girl shakes her head again]
Mark: Okay. Alright.
[as Jake gets a My Little Pony t-shirt present from his crew]
Rodrigo: That’s Princess Celestia, the leader of the ponies. Come on. Try it on.
Mark: Yeah, put it on! Put it on!
Jake Carson: Something like this I should probably save for a special occasion.
Mark: Well, what could be more special than right now?
Dr. Amy Hicks: Mm-hmm.
Jake Carson: Fine. I’ll try it on.
[he puts on the t-shirt, which is too small]
Jake Carson: It’s…
Mark: A shirt. See? It fits perfectly.
[as he watches Jake and Amy laughing and talking during Zoey’s birthday party]
Mark: They’re going to fall in love. Then they’re going to move in together. They’re going to rely on each other for everything. Who’s going to need me now?
[as tears form in his eyes Brynn offers him a packet of Kleenex]
[as their division commander, Richards, shows up unexpectedly during Zoey’s birthday party]
Jake Carson: Commander Richards! You said you weren’t going to show up until tomorrow.
Commander Richards: Kind of takes the surprise out of “surprise inspection” to show up on the day I said. Besides, look what I would have missed. I can see seven code violations from where I stand.
[after Child Services shows up at the same time as Richards during Zoey’s birthday party]
Commander Richards: I can’t believe that you are Dan Carson’s boy.
Will: Hey! You can’t talk to Supe like that.
Jake Carson: He’s right. This is what happens when you let your guard down.
Dr. Amy Hicks: Jake…
Jake Carson: You don’t understand. If I get distracted, I can’t do this job effectively. Without this job, what am I?
[after the kids run off and Jake rescues them, with Will’s help, before the car rolls off the cliff]
Brynn: I thought you never cried.
Jake Carson: Please don’t tell anybody.
Dr. Amy Hicks: [to Brynn] I’m really impressed with how you took care of your brother and sister. Most people would not do that. You’re awesome.
[as they’re saying goodbye, Mark gives Brynn a sketchpad and colored pencils]
Mark: That’s for you. Can you draw me something?
Brynn: Sure. I’ll draw you with hair.
Commander Richards: Look, Carson, you said earlier, if you had any distractions, you couldn’t do this job. I don’t think that’s true. The people you care about, and that care about you, aren’t distractions. They’re the thing that keeps you going.
[referring to the division commander job he had offered Jake earlier]
Commander Richards: I know we got off to a rocky start. But after seeing what you did back there, there’s no doubt in my mind that you’re the man for the job.
[as Child Services is about to take the kids]
Jake Carson: Don’t leave. Stay. With me.
Brynn: You mean here? In the depot?
Jake Carson: I don’t live here full-time. I have a house.
Everyone: You do?
Dr. Amy Hicks: You do?
[after Jake’s offers to adopt the kids]
Brynn: What about your big dream job?
Jake Carson: Somebody told me once that kids are kind of like fire. You can’t control them, you just got to contain them till they burn themselves out. That sounds like a dream job to me.
Jake Carson: Right?
[she nods and then kisses Jake]
[after they’ve adopted; as they are about to get married]
Jake Carson: You ready to be Mrs. Fun?
Dr. Amy Hicks: That’s Doctor Fun, Mister.
[they kiss and head off to get married with the rest of crew and the kids in attendance]
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